My last tea trip was autumn of 2019 in Shizuoka and Kyoto, Japan. After three years of unclear directions due to the ever-changing nature of the pandemic, my family and I hopped on the plane for the first time and spent two weeks in the land of the rising sun. We traversed the central area going into Nagoya, Osaka, Fukui, Shimane, and back to Kyoto and Nara before flying out. I came home filled with gratitude for the chance to come back and enjoy the things I love.
This entry will of course, focus on Tea-related activities and the highlights of the trip. That would be our second to the last leg of our trip where we visited my long-time supplier based in Izumo, Shimane, Japan. It has a wonderful nature scenery and you can feel a pervading sense of calm because of the abundant lush forests and its expansive body of freshwater, Lake Shinji. All those elements combined brought us to a completely relaxed state.
Our host, company president Mr Yuta Oka first treated us to a tea tasting session with Gyokuro and Matcha. These variants are available on the shop soon!
Tencha is the raw material used for matcha. It is a completely different material and processing methods from sencha. Here I grabbed a handful of tencha and the aroma wafting through the bag was simply exquisite it would make a very expensive perfume.
After the tea tasting and factory tour, we went to three of their gardens separated by cultivar type: Saemidori, Okumidori, and Yabukita. This garden is the source material for tencha and gyokuro.
We ended the tour with a lovely matcha-houjicha ice cream at one of their customer's shop.
These young, experimental and exploratory Japanese Tea masters are going to change Japan's tea landscapes. Mr Oka is presently the No. 1 Tea Master in all of Japan. I am honoured to have crossed paths with them and grateful as always for the fate that led us to each other.
Matcha and sweets prepared and offered to me by Tango san during my visit.
I ended my Japan journey with a full and happy heart. Please watch out for the new products and restocks we have curated to share with you. Thank you all for your patience.