Here I go again – me and my obsession with tea tumblers. I’m starting to buy these things as if they are accessories that go with my purse.
Today’s travel tea tumbler is special though, the DAVIDsTea’s Matcha Maker, which is a unique design and the first time I seen a tea tumbler that focuses on matcha.
First off, I need to address a question that is probably is on some of your minds.
“Why is this a thing – can’t I just use a mason jar/any other tea tumbler to shake up hot matcha?”
You can, go ahead and try it shaking hot matcha in a mason jar if you would like to have the rest of your day turn into a bad one. Trust me on this.
Without some sort of pressure release, shaking an air tight vessel with hot liquid causes the air to expand. Minimum, the lid will leak and hiss out burning water. Next worse case scenario – the body cracks. After that – the lid pops off. Worst – blasted thing explodes!
DAVIDsTea Matcha Maker Review
Now that we got that out of they way, let’s take a look at the DAVIDsTea’s Matcha Maker.
The specs on the DAVIDsTea’s The Matcha Maker tea tumbler:
- Double Walled Plastic (BPA free Tritan material).
- 14oz / 421ml Capacity
- Leak Proof
- Special frother attachment
- Special pressure release valve
- Tea Filter attachment
The design is slim and sharp – I do love the white cap making it look clean and modern, along with a pretty contrast to it full of green matcha. I found carrying this tumbler around caught me a few extra glances, with a few people asking what the hell I was drinking.
Special Frother is made of clear material that snaps on. Very interesting looking!
The lid is the same size as DAVIDsTea The Carry and will fit. The tea filter is the same model. To compare more to the DAVIDsTea The Carry, the Matcha Maker is a bit taller and also much lighter. Actually, why did they send a grey filter with the Matcha Maker? I think it should match and be white or clear.
Upon opening the package there is a HUGE RED sticker saying to press the button. If I was designing this tumbler, I would of have it printed on to completely idiot proof the thing. Either way, get into the habit of pressing the button just in case you forgot you shook it or not.
Both on the underside of the top lid and drinking cap are removable rubbery/silicone(?) bands to keep the tumbler leak proof. Be sure to clean under those often!
DAIVDsTea Matcha Maker Performance
I’ve used the DAVIDsTea’s Matcha Maker for over a month now and overall happy with it despite a couple issues with it.
The Matcha Maker body is double walled, with the printing on the inside layer so that it doesn’t come off over time. There is a line printed to show how high you can fill up the tumbler. I think the double wall design is overkill for matcha since matcha is made with not very hot water, but as a regular travel tea tumbler it’s a beneficial design.
This tea tumbler is indeed leak proof. You have to shake it to froth up the matcha and that never sprayed or leaked on me.
The pressure valve is what I love most about this tumbler, above even the matcha ability. Shake shake (or jostle around in your purse, or get kicked back and froth on the table by Tea Owls) then press the button. You’ll hear a hiss of the air releasing. From my experience of flippy double lid tea tumblers, is that you should always put the first lid then the cap, not the lid/cap together – not following this order will make it leak even though it is a leak proof design. This unit is an exception as you can simply hit the pressure button after you screw on the lid.
Matcha Froth-ability? It does the job and is pretty similar to me using an electric frother. You could probably get a better job whisking, but I can’t put a matcha bowl in the car cup holder, can I? As the instructions say, if you pour it out through the frother and screen it will remove the foam, so be sure to unscrew the lid if you want matcha foam.
One critique I had with the DAVIDsTea The Carry was the fat lip to sip out of, which is kind of annoying if you have a small mouth like me. The design is the same for the Matcha Maker as it’s essentially the same part but different colour. However, I didn’t find the fat ridge to be annoying since matcha is a cooler temperature and the unit doesn’t keep tea ripping hot like The Carry does.
DAIVDsTea Matcha Maker Bonus perks
1. Works awesomely with any powdered drink, hot or cold. I’ve put Aiya’s Rooibos Zen Cafe mix in my Matcha maker and it is the bomb! I have also used hot chocolate mix in my Matcha maker. I have also gone into crazy town and put protein powder in my matcha maker for post workout drinks! The matcha frother works just as good as a blender bottle intended for protein powder.
2. Can take bag or purse abuse. This tea tumbler did amazing in my purse because of the pressure valve. Even with leak proof tumblers, with one being filled with hot liquid and getting bumped around, they are prone to leak due to pressure. The Matcha Maker can take a day at food festival in my purse with no hissing leaking lids because the hot liquid was being jostled around too much.
3. Light weight and more durable than glass. DAVIDsTea’s Matcha Maker, due to the plastic body, is quite light weight, which makes it easy to carry around.
I’ve gotten a few recommendation requests on a plastic tea tumbler as the user needs something that won’t shatter like glass, but is still see through. Since the DAVIDsTea Matcha Maker comes with a regular tea filter, you can use it as a regular travel tea tumbler and not burn your hands since it is double walled. I don’t know how well it will hold temperature though. If someone wants me to temperature test it, I can do so.
EDIT: Temperature test. DAVIDsTea’s Matcha Maker did very well for a temperature test. It stayed hotter for longer than all my double walled glass tea tumblers of similar size. I learned double walled plastic has excellent heat retention, especially since this model is air tight. You will get hot tea for 1.5 hours or so vs double walled glass for 1 hour. It is still not as good as all steel, but much better than glass!
DAVIDsTea Matcha Maker Issues
I did have a couple issues arrive with this tumbler, mostly having to do with the matcha frothing abilities.
1. Too much froth when matcha is prepared with milk. This might be a soy milk only issue, but I had an issue using the DAVIDsTea Matcha Maker with milk. You can see the froth level on the picture above with the rooibos mix that I made with milk.
I am aware milk will froth up more, so when I tried this Matcha Maker out with soy milk I was careful to add less milk than the line on the bottle. After shaking it, the froth got WAYYY too crazy and was hitting the top. I pressed the pressure release valve which cause it to spray hot matcha milk out of the button! With that said, be very careful when using the DAVIDsTea Matcha Maker with hot milk! Wait until the froth goes down before hitting the pressure release! With cold milk it still froths up like crazy, but there is no pressure due to temperature.
2. Cleaning. First off, the frother attachment has a lot of holes plus nooks and crannies that a brush can’t get into. Matcha will also build and crust up in the frother if you don’t go in and clean it well. The most evil thing is the little hole above the middle droplet shape which matcha will get into – you need to use a tooth pick to scoop out of the gunk.
This is the froth attachment after I tried to clean it with a bottle brush.
The pressure release, as much as I like it, also will get gunk in it especially if you have an accident with it spewing milk.
With that said, owning this tea tumbler you will need a tea soak style cleaner – Mandala Tea’s Smart Soak to the rescue (as always, this stuff is amazing!). I couldn’t figure out how to get this thing clean without a soaking or getting creative with a pipe cleaner and toothpick. Edit: by the way, the instructions on the box say the Matcha Maker is handwash only. Sorry dishwasher hopefuls!
3. Top Heavy. I found the Matcha Maker top heavy, especially since the body is plastic and light. If the bottle is almost or is empty it is prone to fall over. Luckily it is leak proof!
4. Price. At this time this tea tumbler is $35 USD, which is pretty steep for a travel tea tumbler and one of DAVIDsTea’s most expensive travel mugs. You are paying a premium here for the frother and pressure valve.
Is the DAVIDsTea’s Matcha Maker cheaper than an entire traditional matcha set up? An electric frother can run you $1 to $20 (dollar store FTW). Bamboo whisk similarly can be found for under $20. Right now, you can get a cheap Matcha whisk set for under $12 (affiliate link).
Matcha bowls are the bigger ticket item but any wide bowl or mug will do. With that said, the answer is no, the matcha maker is not cheaper than traditional matcha gear if you bargain hunt. However, if you just want one vessel to do it all, the matcha maker might be more optimal.
I found DAVIDsTea’s The Matcha Maker to be a really cool looking tea tumbler and does a good job making matcha and other hot drinks. The Matcha Maker is leak proof and the pressure valve makes this tumbler the only (so far) travel tea tumbler that you can shake hot matcha in without it exploding in your face.
With that said, at high price of $35, you’ll need to decide if it’s worth paying a bit more for a travel tumbler with pressure release and built in frother. I personally found all the extra perks of the unit being light weight, durable and being able to be used with other hot mixed drinks to be worth it for me. I am also a tea tumbler addict.