Matcha latte has taken over the cafe scene. But there are only a handful of cafes that specialises in matcha. The common names that come to mind are Hvala, Matchaya and Tsujiri. However, they are not the only brands around.

Here are the eight best places to get of matcha powder in Singapore, from culinary grade to ceremonial grade for the perfect matcha drink.

Matcha grades

To determine the quality of the matcha powder, we have to first understand the two main grades of matcha- Ceremonial and Culinary.

culinary grade versus ceremonial grade matcha powder colour difference
Culinary Grade (left), Ceremonial Grade (right)

The highest quality of them all, the ceremonial grade, distinguishes itself apart with its vibrant green colour. Its delicate nuances, such as grassy or smoky notes, renders it best consumed straight with hot water only. Adding sweeteners or other flavourings may tarnish the innate fragrances. On the other hand, culinary grade is often used for cooking and baking. However, culinary grade matcha powder are suitable agents for matcha lattes as well.

Additionally, the place of origin matters as well, since factors like temperature and soil humidity can affect the growth of the plants. For example, Uji, Japan is the revered birthplace of matcha powder, where the highest grade of matcha was farmed for only the royals of Japan.

1. Naoki Matcha

Source: Naoki Matcha

Naoki Matcha is a local brand that sells a wide selection of matcha powder. Aside from recognising barista grades and ceremonial grades, they take it a step further with specific types of ceremonial grade matcha powders. For example, the Fragrant Yame Ceremonial Matcha ($25.99) boasts floral nuances and Chiran Harvest Matcha (USD$32.99) is infused with natural umami and nutty flavours and paired with a creamy full-body texture.

Their specialists have also precisely listed out the type of powder for a specific type of drink. For example, the Superior Ceremonial Matcha is a better choice for matcha latte whereas the Chiran Harvest Ceremonial Matcha will be better for matcha shotsr to better appreciate its nuanced flavours. All this information can be found from their ‘Recipe’s tab.

Available online.

2. Craft Tea Fox

craft tea fox uji matcha powder

Craft Tea Fox, one of the latest contender to the market, stands out with its bold contemporary design. Dissatisfied by the lack of decent matcha lattes in Singapore, founders Kai Xin and Elias decided to import their own matcha powder from Uji, Japan. Craft Tea Fox sells three different grades- Patissier ($12.9), Barista ($16.9) and Ceremonial ($19.9) at a reasonable price for their qualities.

craft tea fox essential whisk set includes bamboo whisk, Uji Matcha powder, uji hojicha powder

Craft Tea Fox’s Matcha Whisk Set (Essential Brewing Kit) ($64) includes 20g of Uji grade Matcha Powder, 20g of Hojicha Powder and a long bamboo whisk.

Available online.

Read our full review here.

3. Tea Cottage

Tea Cottage
Source: Tea Cottage

Tea Cottage’s Ceremonial Grade Matcha Powder from Uji is one of the more affordable options on this list at $18.9 for 20g. The matcha powder comes in individual packets with 2g in each. It stands out with a unique, almost nutty nuance.

Additionally, Tea Cottage houses and an impressive ensemble of tea leaves. Just for Japanese tea, there is Sencha, Genmaicha, Yuzu Uji and Ginger Uji. They also have an array of Chinese tea, featuring a 1990 Pu Er that is famed for its weight loss properties, and an extension to floral teas, speciality teas and detox tea.

Available online.

4. Hvala

Hvala matcha powder with bamboo whisk, chawan and tea scoop
Source: Hvala

Hvala is one of the few cafes in Singapore that serve usucha, translating to ‘thin tea’. Consisting of only matcha powder and water, its astringency is the main reason for its lower popularity among Singaporeans. However, as it is typically prepared with higher grade matcha powder, finding usucha on one’s menu is a good indicator that good matcha powder is used.

Hvala’s Kaze Matcha Powder No. 1 boasts robust vegetal notes that linger on the palate while Hana Matcha Powder No 2 embodies a pleasant astringency. Both cost $38 for 30g. Those who prefer instant gratification can also opt for their Instant Latte Powders at $18.

Available online and in store.

Read our full review here.

5. Matchaya

matchaya Okumidori ceremonial grade matcha
Source: Matchaya

Matchaya is famous for its velvety Matcha Cold Brew which is easily achievable at home with their Matcha Milk Blend ($14.9). Alternatively, you can purchase their Uji Matcha Powder ($16.9 for 30g) that promises bittersweet, umami and notes of white flower. While it is culinary grade, it remains a solid choice for matcha latte recipes. Meanwhile, for a more robust and umami profile, opt for their Okumidori Ceremonial Grade Matcha ($59.9)

Available online and in store.

Read our full review here.

6. Tsujiri

tsujiri Ume no Shiro matcha powder
Source: Tsujiri

Tsujiri has the longest history among other brands in this listicle. Founded in 1860 by Riemon Tsujiri in Uji, Japan, Tsujiri was not only a tea store, but it is also an avenue for Riemon to be involved in research to enhance to flavours of the tea. Currently, while the matcha store boasts a wide range of desserts, it only has one type of matcha powder, Ume no Shiro, priced at $32 for 30g and $70 for 100g.

Available in store.

7. Green Tea SG

Green Tea SG
Source: Green Tea SG

Just like Naoki Matcham, Green Tea SG offers a multitude of options as seen from the eight types of ceremonial matcha, two types of culinary matcha and three types of organic matcha. Their best-sellers include the Tenyu Premium Nishio Organic Ceremonial Matcha ($37), which robust umami flavours results in the perfect koicha, translating to ‘thick tea’. It is essentially a matcha espresso. For a cheaper alternative, go for the Harumi Nishio Daily Matcha ($13). Although it’s culinary matcha, it is relatively sweet and has lower astringency for its grade.

8. Supermarket Brands

supermarket ntuc culinary grade matcha powder

As much as I would love to indulge in premium matcha drinks every day, I am constricted by the measly income of a writer. Hence, I opt for the cheapest alternative on the list- culinary grade matcha powder from supermarkets. Milk and sugar masks the complex undertones of ceremonial grade matcha powders. Hence, the difference between the two grades are marginal when making a matcha latte. This brand is available in NTUC for $11.

Available in store.

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