About Japanese Tea
Tradition and Culture, Refined and Redefined
Tea bushes and the habit of drinking tea were brought to Japan through close inter-cultural ties with China in the 12th century, in particular by a Buddhist monk named Eisai. Thereafter tea production and drinking practices in China and Japan diverged leading to the emergence of a unique Japanese tea culture. The Japanese came to focus on the production of steamed Green teas, such as Sencha, and developed the innovation of shading tea bushes (as in the production of Matcha and Gyokuro). Tea culture in Japan today is like nowhere else in the world, refined into both an art form and fundamental part of daily life.
A Southern Gem
A major producer of tea in Japan, much of it cultivated in organic-certified gardens. Located on Japan’s southern Kyushu island generally large-scale low-lying gardens produce some of Japan’s earliest-picked teas each year. Kagoshima’s climate is well suited to tea production, with plenty of sunshine, enough rain and cooling ocean breezes. The city of Kagoshima itself lies in a bay overlooked by one of Japan’s most famous and active volcanoes, Sakurajima. Ash from the volcano regularly coats the area, adding to the fertility of the soil. We source our excellent Matcha from Kagoshima.
Shizuoka is the largest tea-producing region in Japan, particularly famed for its Sencha. It sits in the central Honshu island of Japan with a Pacific Ocean coastline. Shizuoka is renowned for its natural beauty and varied landscape or rivers, lakes, plains, coastline and mountains. Mount Fuji lies at the northern border of the prefecture. The beauty of this area and its suitability for tea production, is summed up in its name, meaning in English “tranquil hills”.