In the late 1100s and 1200s, the Samurai and later the upper classes of Japan began to enjoy their culture while drinking tea. However, the modern Japanese tea ceremony wasn’t developed until several centuries later. It was begun by Zen Buddhist monks, who were guided by the Sen-no Riku in the 1500s.
The austere and calming ceremony referred to as the “Way of Tea” began in the sixteenth century, it played an important role in feudal diplomacy and negotiations between clan leaders.
For me, leafing through a recently-released compendium of teas with many first-flush single-origin varieties is akin to salivating over those luscious photos of vegetables in a seed-seller’s catalogue: Each entry promising something new, summoning a hopeful if guarded belief in Nature and the growing conditions of my garden. What will the … Continue reading