Water is the invisible foundation of every cup of matcha.
It’s easy not to think about the water we use to brew up a cup of matcha, but water is actually just as important for the quality of our cup of green tea as the matcha we use.
Depending on where you live, you may have clean water, or you may have to use filtered or bottled water.
Here are some basic guidelines and resources you can use to think more deeply about the water you use as the base for your matcha.
I’m going to share some tips, sites and books that can help you tumble down the rabbit hole of becoming hooked on high quality water.
When It Comes to Water, What Are Your Options?
Assuming you live in a city or town in the industrialized world, here are the most likely ways you have to access water:
- Tap Water – This can be a good option in some places, but it’s often not a very good idea to drink straight from your tap.
- Bottled Water – If your bottled water comes in plastic, that’s a bad sign. Glass is a better option for bottled water.
- Well Water – If you have an artesian well where you live, and if you’ve tested the water to make sure it’s clean, this can be a great option.
- Spring Water – Spring water is the best option if you have a clean source of spring water near you. Collect your own and develop a deep connection with your water. I’ll discuss this more below.
Why Should I Care What Kind of Water I Use to Brew My Matcha?
Because water is the blood of the Earth.
Our bodies are made up of ~70% water.
Have you heard of the work of Masaru Emoto?
In a nutshell, Emoto’s work involves freezing water and then photographing a crystal from the water sample.
Emoto discovered that the crystalline structure of water looks different depending on the outside factors influencing that particular sample of water.
Where the water comes from, the purity of the water, the type of source and even the intention held in the humans who interacted with the water all influence how the water crystal appears.
While many of his theories are quite controversial, he has interesting things to say about the deeper nature of water that Western science has yet to recognize.
Given that water is of such importance in our health, and given the surprising findings coming out from Emoto and other researchers like him, doesn’t it makes sense to pay more attention to the water we drink?
Search the phrase “water wars” and notice what comes up.
Many experts have stated on the record that in the 21st century, water is going to be one of the main natural resources over which wars may be fought.
Taking a Cue from the Tea Ceremony
If you’ve ever witnessed a Japanese tea ceremony, then you’ve noticed the exquisite attention to detail paid to every element of the ceremony of making tea.
From the placement of the ceremonial tea-making instruments to the proper etiquette with which both host and guest are expected to conduct themselves, nothing escapes the intense Zen-influenced focus on presence that infuses the tea ceremony!
Doesn’t it make sense to pay the same level of attention to the water we use to brew our matcha?
Where to Get Your Matcha Water
Let’s return to the options we enumerated above for where you can get your water.
If you live in a city or town and mainly use your tap water, I’d like to encourage you to think more about what that water is and where it’s coming from.
No matter how effective a municipal water treatment facility may be, the way the water is piped and channeled underground violates some of the principles of how water tends to move in nature.
Water never moves at right angles in nature as it does in plumbing pipes.
Between the residues left in the water after treatment at the treatment plant and the corroded nature of much of the municipal water infrastructure, I highly encourage you to check out your water and at least filter it with the best filter you can buy.
A Brita water pitcher isn’t really going to cut it unless that’s really all you can afford at the moment.
Go with a reverse osmosis whole-house water filter instead if you can.
When it comes to bottled water, just recognize that water reacts unfavorably with plastic.
Plastic has been shown to leach chemicals into water particularly when the plastic is at higher temperatures. This is bad news.
Additionally, of course, plastic is a huge contributor to the pollution that clogs our planet.
It’s best to steer clear of plastic as best as you can–or at least use a reusable plastic bottle with its own filter built-in.
Harvest Your Own Water
Recently, I’ve become very interested in developing a more intentional and conscious relationship with the water I drink.
This process led me to the site www.findaspring.com where you can search for known fresh water springs in your area.
Depending on where you live, there may be some springs nearby listed there, or you can even do the legwork and submit springs you know of to the site.
Going off of that site, I’ve located a few springs near where I live, and I’ve been traveling to harvest my own water every few weeks.
It’s been a great excuse to get into the countryside and explore parts of my area that I’d never seen before.
Not only that, but the water tastes amazing and I am relating to the water I consume on an entirely new level.
Here’s a fascinating discussion about spring water and water issues in general with David Wolfe and Daniel Vitalis, two leading figures in the world of nutrition and “raw” water:
If you do decide to start harvesting your own water, I can share some tips that I’ve picked up off of my own explorations going out and gathering water:
- First off, gather any old wine bottles or other glass vessels that you can find around. These can be totally free depending on who you know who has some extra glass containers they aren’t using. Wine bars may also have extra bottles you can cart away for free.
- If you want to harvest a lot of water at once, a 5 Gallon Glass Carboy is essential. These things are a little heavy and unwieldy, but they are absolutely killer when it comes to gathering a bunch of water at once. I have three of these now, and they allow me to make one trip and have enough water to last for weeks.In order to make the carboy a little easier to carry, I’ve been using this carboy carrier. It works well.
- Finally, be sure to store your water carefully when you get home with it. Fresh spring water is alive. Store it just like you’d store a fine wine–in the dark, preferably in a cool cellar or fridge.
- Last but not least, always make sure to test your water thoroughly before drinking. Better safe than sorry. At home water testing kits are one option, or you can send a water sample away to a lab and get a full-spectrum test on everything in the water for a couple hundred dollars.
Put Your Intention In Your Water
Whichever way you decide to go with for the water you use in your Matcha, above all, put some intention into the water as you brew up your tea.
We have a choice when we’re on Planet Earth–we can stumble through life blindly, or we can aspire to make life as ennobled and uplifted as possible.
Our thoughts, intentions, prayers, presence, consciousness and love can all remain dormant or be activated and used every time we brew a cup of tea.
There’s much more to water than we might first suspect.
I fully predict that many new discoveries will be made about water in the 21st century and beyond. We’re just at the beginning of a process of evolving a much greater awareness of what water is and what it means on Earth and in the universe.
Consider the water you use when you brew up a cup of matcha, and ennoble it with your highest intentions for health, love, kindness and prosperity for all!