"Zen Buddhists, who cultivated the green tea plant, called "sencha", by growing it under shade conditions thus maximizing the therapeutic benefits of the green tea, or what became known as "Matcha."
The Zen Buddhists were very aware of the meditational benefits of this "Matcha" green tea, which brought to them a greater sense of clarity and well-being.
They found that in drinking this tea before their afternoon meditations that it enabled them to be much more "centered", "focused", and maintain a level of sustained energy throughout the afternoon which they had never experienced before. This special green tea eventually became known as "Matcha, the Ceremonial tea of the temple high priests".
Even the warriors, the "Shogun," saw the remarkable benefits of this "ceremonial" tea, for it gave them that extra sustained energy and mental acuity. Whenever possible, this was their "ceremonial" drink prior to going into battle." - From GotMatcha.com