Drinking matcha is like sipping on regular green tea that's been turned up to 11; the brew is mixed using a powder made from whole green tea leaves, giving it a more intense herbal flavor and bigger antioxidant boost than the typical cup. It's also said to have a plethora of health benefits, and those were at the forefront of Snake River Tea owner Sue Neal's mind when she came up with a novel idea to make matcha more mainstream: infusing the brew with liquid nitrogen, just like caffeine junkies have done with cold brew coffee.
"Those fine little bubbles—just like in Guinness beer—they give it a nice creamy body, and they make it a little bit sweet," Neal told Boise Weekly in July, just after her shop debuted the state's first "nitro matcha."
Neal said sales of the cool, creamy drink have tapered with the dropping temperatures, but it's still a favorite with tea drinkers, with nearly half of the people who try it returning near-daily for a fix. Regardless of the temperature, matcha's reputation for lowering blood pressure and cholesterol, fighting cancer and reducing inflammation will proceed it year-round, and for the nitrogen-infused brew, Snake River is the only game in town.