JFOODO Seminar Explores Japanese Green Tea Potential

Japanese Green Tea Trend Hits U.S. Market as New Non-Alcoholic Beverage Option

Inspire the table

JFOODO organized Japanese green tea seminars & business matching events called "Inspire the table" that targeted restaurant owners, beverage managers, and distributors on Feb. 7 in LA and Feb. 23 in NYC. Due to the demand for non-alcoholic beverages in the U.S., especially among the sober-curious, a group of people who don't drink alcoholic beverages or consume fewer of them, many restaurant operators seek a new beverage option. Zach Mangan, a Japanese green tea specialist and CEO of Kettl, explained the fascinating points of Japanese green tea, each unique feature, and demonstrated how to brew and serve with the participants in these seminars. Akio Matsumoto, a sommelier at Torien that is the first international branch of Michelin-starred yakitori bar Torishiki, located in Tokyo, Japan, described the advantages of offering Japanese green tea at restaurants and approaches of how to pair foods.

In these seminars, Mangan mentioned that the demand for Japanese green tea as a non-alcoholic beverage is increased not only in household consumption but also in restaurant consumption. Many restaurant clients of Kettl, including fine dining restaurants such as Sushi Noz and Sushi Nakazawa, started offering Japanese green tea menus and food pairing menus with this tea due to the demand. Matsumoto mentioned that there are two advantages of including Japanese green tea in drink menus. From a business perspective, even customers who don't order alcoholic beverages often order from the Japanese green tea menu, which helps retain profit margins because restaurants can maintain average customer spending. From customers' perspectives, they can be satisfied with a wide range of variations based on their preferences, and special dining experiences with Japanese green tea pairings. One restaurant participant said, "The seminar was informative and had great suggestions of how to menu-in. I would like to include it in my restaurant menu soon." A distributor participant mentioned, "I realized the high potential of Japanese green tea as non-alcoholic beverages."

Even though only a month passed after these seminars, five restaurant owners already decided to offer Japanese green tea menus: MINE Craft Sushi/GONGOSalt + CharcoalWOKUNITowa, and Tsujita. Teruyuki Takayama, the owner of Salt + Charcoal, an authentic Japanese steakhouse at Williamsburg in Brooklyn, believes "There are not many customers who know about Japanese green tea for now, but I hope this will be a great opportunity for them to get to know the greatness with foods." Takahiro Okada, a manager at MINE Craft Sushi/GONGO, a new modern sushi restaurant, said, "As New Yorkers become more health-conscious, Japanese green tea will become the new option of non-alcoholic beverage choices. Offering high-quality Japanese green tea is beneficial not only for customers but also for restaurant operations."

To learn about Japanese green tea and seminar contents, visit https://greentea-jfoodo.jetro.go.jp/business/index.html

Source: JFOODO (The Japan Food Product Overseas Promotion Center)

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Categories: Restaurants, Bars, and Catering

Tags: beverage, restaurant, tea


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JFOODO, The Japan Food Product Overseas Promotion Center, will devote its resources to the branding of Japanese agricultural, forestry, fishery, and food products.