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The Complete Guide To Japanese Cold-Brew And Iced Tea

Posted by Angelina Kurganska on

As much as we love our daily gong fu tea, the summer days are only getting hotter. We know sometimes as much as you’d like to enjoy a quiet moment with your tea pet, brewing up pot after pot of delicious loose leaf tea, the heat can make the practice unbearable. At times like this, we switch to our favorite summer-time tea brewing method — cold brewed tea!

Japanese green teas are perfect for making cold brews. Because the leaves are much smaller than full-leaf Chinese or Taiwanese teas, you can have a refreshing cold brew tea in less than an hour.

Below are some of our favorite ways of enjoying chilled teas.


cold brew tea


Mizudashi is the Japanese term for cold brew. It is a term that is not only used for tea, but also coffee. When making mizudashi tea, a high proportion of tea leaves are steeped in chilled water.

This method may take slightly more time than the traditional process of making iced tea: making a concentrated brew using hot water, then chilling with ice. However, it is our preferred method when making iced tea. Initially brewing the tea using cold water will result in a mellow, sweet taste with plenty of umami.

This is because the heat helps tea leaves release tannins, catechins, and caffeine, all of which influence the bitter notes in the tea. Mizudashi tea is tea in its purest form. You may even notice many tea shops prefer to let their customers try the tea cold-brewed first. That way, the customer tastes the unhindered flavor profile and strong aromatic notes of any tea.

For Mizudashi Sencha:

  1. Place 10 grams of sencha green tea in a kyusu (or brewing vessel of choice)
  2. Add 200 ml fresh cool water
  3. Place in the fridge for 15 minutes
  4. Stir the tea leaves and wait for them to settle, this helps the tea leaves release more flavor into the water
  5. Enjoy the cold-brewed sencha tea!
    *For the second infusion, brew for 7 minutes.
     For the third infusion, brew for 3 minutes. 

Follow the same steps if you wish to make cold-brewed gyokuro.

For Iced Matcha:

  1. Sift 2 grams (2 chashaku scoops) matcha green tea powder into a chawan (matcha bowl)
  2. Add 60 ml of 80°C water
  3. Whisk the matcha using a chasen (check this article for instructions)
  4. Chill with enough ice and enjoy!
    *Dilute with more chilled water for a less concentrated matcha 

For Shaked Matcha:

  1. Use 1 gram matcha powder for every 100 ml of chilled water
  2. Sift the matcha powder into a cocktail shaker, mason jar, or travel flask
  3. Add chilled water and ice
  4. Shake vigorously and enjoy!

Shaked matcha is our preferred method of drinking matcha on the go. A quick way to get a refreshing drink full of antioxidants and pure energy for the day. You can even pre-sift the matcha and carry it in a small tea container, for when you want to make some iced matcha outdoors.


iced matcha latte recipe

For Iced Matcha Latte:

  1. Sift 3 grams of matcha powder
  2. Add 60 ml of 80°C water
  3. Whisk the matcha using a chasen 
  4. Add your milk of choice to a glass with ice
  5. Pour the whisked matcha over the milk
  6. Enjoy! 

Kori Dashi

Kori Dashi refers to tea brewed with ice. While this process is slightly longer than Mizudashi, the ice is even better at extracting all those sweet notes of tea. We particularly like to reserve the kori dashi brewing method for the Japanese green tea king — gyokuro.

For Kori Dashi:

  1. Place 1 gram of gyokuro tea leaves for every 30 ml of water (ice) in a brewing vessel
  2. Place the ice somewhere where it can slowly drip down on the tea leaves as it melts
  3. Wait for the ice to melt completely (in hot weather this will take a few hours)
  4. Enjoy!

Can I Cold Brew Other Tea Types As Well?

Most certainly! While we love cold brewed Japanese green teas, any tea type can be cold brewed. White teas, green teas, and light oolongs are all great cold brewed. Darker teas like black teas, dark oolongs, and pu-erh can also be cold brewed. However, hot water does an excellent job of highlighting the roasted honey-like notes many of these tea types carry. A traditional iced tea method would also work great!

Shaked Iced Tea is one of our most favorite ways of enjoying cold tea in the summer days. A well-shaken iced tea using a cocktail shaker creates a nice froth similar to beer foam. It’s a must-try for both tea lovers and beer lovers alike.

Read more: The Quick Way To Make Good Iced Tea

How To Brew Tea Over Ice (Kori Dashi)