Posted: Mar 23, 2015 at 2:22 PM
(Last Updated: Sep 17, 2015 at 9:47 AM)
Using a high quality blend of organic green tea and organic matcha, the Traditional variety of Ito En’s Matcha Love Organic line is a great example of a zero calorie beverage that doesn’t need any sweetener or flavoring. The mellow base of brewed green tea has a touch of grassy flavor to it, while the matcha adds the umami flavor that it's know for. The combination of the two works extremely well, with the two flavors complementing each other and making for a smoother experience than you’d get from drinking them by themselves. If there’s any downside to the approach that Ito En has taken, it’s that the three flavors taste somewhat similar. We’re not suggesting that the company dumps in more flavoring or add sweetener, but rather that the three products all probably appeal to the same consumer base. Visually, the 16.9 oz. bottle is almost fully-wrapped, with the exception being an area around the top portion of the bottle. It definitely looks the part of a natural foods product. The company has definitely done a good job of making it obvious that it’s unsweetened and zero-calorie, which seem like two key selling points of the product. On the other hand, the front panel feels text-heavy and doesn’t have the visual pop that their Matcha Love cans do (a tough act to follow, for sure). Overall, Ito En moving the Matcha Love line into the organic category definitely feels like a good move -- and it's done a solid job executing this flavor such that it lives up to the Ito En name.