Japanese convenience stores are often heralded for having service that really renders their name as a massive understatement. While it may seem strange to a first-time visitor to see 7-11's and other convenience stores around every corner, their ubiquitous nature can be justified by just how valuable they are to everyday life in Japan. You can pick up and send packages, pay your bills, buy concert tickets, and of course select from a variety of green teas to sip on. One such all-in-one store is Natural Lawson (affectionately called Natty Lawson by some ex-pats), a more fancy and somewhat hipstery version of major Japanese convenience store chain Lawson. Now, in living up to their organic theme, Natural Lawson is offering Haruka--bottled water that turns into freshly made matcha with a simple twist.


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Carefully selected tea leaves with just the flick of the wrist


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A quick glance at Haruka will probably make you wonder "Why are they selling green tea perfume in the beverage section?", but despite its deodorant-like appearance, it is indeed a bottled drink. With the theme of being able to prepare your own green tea on the go in mind, Haruka offers the convenience of grabbing bottled matcha from the store, but also allowing you to enjoy it fresher than other bottled green teas.

Grean tea powder is stored in the cap


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A quick twist drops it into fresh mountain water


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There's more than meets the eye when it comes to this fancy twist on matcha, as under the glass case is a twistable cap that contains powdered green tea in hidden compartment. Haruka uses specially selected tea leaves from Hoshinomura Village, Yame, in Fukuoka prefecture to guarantee a high-quality matcha experience.

Give it a strong shake to mix it up


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Then pour into the glass container, which doubles as a drinking glass


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All the frothy goodness of a freshly whisked cup of matcha


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Haruka is available in two varieties, matcha, as mentioned above, but also gyokuro--which makes use of tea leaves grown in the shade to offer the same aromatic body of matcha, but with a sweeter and smoother taste if you aren't quite up to taking on raw green tea flavor. Priced at 500 yen ($4.44 USD), it's bit expensive for bottled green tea, but then again it's a much fresher alternative to other options available at a convenience store.

Matcha and Gyokuro flavors


Source: Freshie

By - grape Japan editorial staff.