Founder & CEO
Inspired by my work with the United Nations on the prevention and treatment of severely malnourished children, I have expanded upon my combined learnings of nearly 10 years working with UN agencies, most recently UNICEF, and my learnings from The Division of Nutritional Sciences at Cornell to share both wellness and impact.
One of Plentea Matcha's key pillars is to honor traditional Japanese practices of nourishment through the preparation of hand-whisked matcha. We aim to make self-care accessible and contribute to the development of sustainable programs in underserved communities.
Since inception, Plentea Matcha has supported the Lower Eastside Girls Club; specifically nourishment programs such as the vegetable rooftop garden where girls ages 8-18 are empowered to plant their own seeds. I sit on their Jr. Board and serve as chair for the angel alliance Summer Soirée fundraiser to fund summer programming for the girls.
When I'm not hosting Matcha Morning events, I let my creative energy flow alongside fellow UNICEF supporter and principal designer at Sterling McDavid Design. A cherished opportunity to tie impact with sustainable design for future generations.
I love seeing you at our events and love even more to run into you in the West Village where we live!
Say hi and join us @plenteamatcha
You may recognize Aria Critchley from our Matcha Mornings! She is also our lovely in-house florist.
The dreamy Ikebana arrangements you've come to know as a signature staple at our pop-ups are created by Aria who joined Plentea in late 2020 and founded Milk Weed Botanical in the Spring of 2021.
Milk Weed Botanical is an independent floral design studio located in historic Greenpoint, Brooklyn. She specializes in adding a touch of modern whimsy through permanent silk installations and foam-free fresh arrangements for weddings, events, editorial shoots and everyday life.
Board Certified Nutrition Specialist
Charlotte is a Board Certified Nutrition Specialist professional and a member of the American College of Nutrition. She joined Plentea in 2020 and is the voice behind our notes on wellness blog.
Charlotte's practice, Thrive East, was created out of her passion for real food, nutrition science, and the belief that all people should have access to individualized nutrition.
Charlotte’s approach is practical, goal oriented, and always optimistic. Charlotte works closely with clients to support their health by first teaching why we want to choose real food, then how to create sustainable lifestyle changes.
Southampton based with universal tips, recipes and wellness inspiration. As she says, don’t miss a beet, and keep up with Charlotte on Instagram: @ThriveEastNutrition
Susanna Blavarg is the eye behind the lens and an absolute master at capturing the essence of Plentea matcha.
Check out her food photography here.
ORIGIN OF OUR MATCHA
Plentea is centered around traditional Japanese practices of healing and self-care achieved through the nutritional properties of matcha. Instantly evident by our vibrant green color, scent and delicious umami, our matcha has been cultivated with love from one of the few remaining award-winning family farms on the hillside of Uji, near Kyoto in Japan. What makes our matcha ceremonial grade? It’s shade grown, handpicked, de-stemmed, deveined, air dried (to stop oxidation) and stone-ground as has been tradition for the finest and purest matcha for over 800 years! Learn more below and feel free to reach out with any questions.
What makes matcha sweet with no traces of bitterness? Our Tea Masters carefully shade the matcha leaves in the time leading up to harvest. This not only boosts nutrients but also L-theanine (the feel good amino acid responsible for green tea’s umami flavor. Exposure to sunlight decreases this component and increases catechins causing the leaf to become more astringent and bitter. In general, tea leaves that have more umami are considered higher in grade, this is why we chose the highest grade: Ceremonial Grade Matcha.
How is our matcha so vibrant green? well, location above all. Uji is the birthplace of matcha for a reason. The very best matcha is chosen by hand —our tea masters do this once per year, typically in May. Only the topmost, youngest pair of leaves on the very top of the tea plants are handpicked to produce premium matcha in a laborious method called Niyou Tsumi (two leaf picking), making it electric green in color.They are then steamed to preserve the color and nutrients, and to stop the enzymatic action within the leaves, then thoroughly dried with heated blowers.
Why is it powdered? when we consume matcha green tea, we are consuming the whole leaf, rather than seeping our tea in warm water. With that comes so many more health benefits.Before it even gets to powder, matcha is sorted for grade (with the youngest, greenest, most tender leaves earning the highest marks) which is ours!
The leaves that make it through the rigorous process of destemming and deveining are called tencha and of course the quality of tencha varies widely.