The name Kamikatsu is not new in a world made smaller by the Internet. Almost every news site online had featured it at least once in the last few years. This small town in the mountains of Tokushima prefecture had made its mark very deeply as the Town of Zero Waste. For Japanese tea enthusiasts, … Continue reading Kamikatsu – The Zero-Waste Town
Phew! Happy new year!! It's already 13 days into the new year and I've just started to update this blog. No reviews today, but more personal ramblings. I really can't contain my excitement but it's premature for me to reveal plans for this year, as nothing is confirmed yet. What I do know is I'm … Continue reading 2018: A year of opportuni-teas?
I was told that Kumazasa (Sasa veitchii) is a specialty of Hokkaido, where it is naturally grown. The kanji characters 熊笹 literally mean 'bear's bamboo leaves' and no surprise it is a favourite among bears before they head into hibernation. The leaves are also known for its anti-bacterial properties, hence why they are commonly used … Continue reading Tea tasting: Kumazasa-cha
Enshuu is the old provincial name for western Shizuoka, which can still be seen in many company names or product brands. Somewhat like the prefix "Tosa" for Kochi products, a tea example would be Tosa Aburicha. Enshuu Kakegawa-cha is actually part of a series of Enshuu teas by the tea manufacturer Hishidai Seicha, based in … Continue reading Tea tasting: Enshuu Kakegawa-cha
In the southern part of Kyoto prefecture lies a small town called Wazuka, famed for its 800 years of history in Uji tea (Ujicha) production and also known as one of the The Most Beautiful Villages in Japan. Every year since 2011, it is host to Chagenkyo Matsuri or Teatopia Festival. The festival is usually … Continue reading Chagenkyo Matsuri (Teatopia Festival)
Entocha is a traditional herbal tea, drunk by the Ainu, who are the indigenous people of Hokkaido. Scientifically known as Elsholtzia ciliata, its Japanese name is naginata kouju, which is of the shiso plant family. I bought this tea at the Ainu village museum called Poroto Kotan in Shiraoi town, over one hour from Sapporo … Continue reading Tea tasting: Entocha
Do you know that October 1 is designated as Nihoncha no Hi or Japanese Tea Day? It was established by popular beverage maker Ito En, based on some historical facts. On the first day of the 10th month in the 15th year of Tensho era (天正１５年１０月１日), the great daimyo lord Toyotomi Hideyoshi held a large-scale … Continue reading Nihoncha no Hi (Japanese Tea Day)