The 3 Essential Tools of a Japanese Tea Ceremony

  • Tea ceremony has its unique place in Japanese culture and history. Making tea (matcha) is considered an art and there are many schools that teach this together with hospitality and the norms of conducting a tea ceremony. There are many tools used in making tea. Let’s have a look at three of the most important among them.

    1. Chasen (茶筅 – whisk)

    Chasen is a whisking utensil used to mix matcha with hot water to make it foamy. It is one of the main utensils used in a tea ceremony. There are various shapes and types of chasen available and it is said that there are more than 100 types of chasen in the market made up of different materials. It is up to the tea master of a tea school to decide which type of chasen to use. There are basically two kinds of matcha; one is usucha (thin tea) and koicha (thick tea). The formal way of using a chasen is to hold the chawan (tea bowl) with the non-dominant hand and use the thumb, index finger, and the middle finger of the dominant hand to hold the handle to mix. Without chasen, it is impossible to conduct a tea ceremony.

    2. Kuromoji (黒文字 – chopsticks for sweets)

    Kuromoji is an important part of the Sabi aesthetics of the ‘way of tea.’ It is nothing but a pick made from the spicewood plant, ‘Lindera,’ which is known for its refreshing fragrance. Kuromojiare used to consume sweets or cakes during the tea ceremony. One has to pick the cake and eat it using a kuromoji pick. They usually look thin and pointed at one end and a ‘bark’ handle at the other end. They are also used as chopsticks in such occasions.

    3. Chashaku (茶杓 – tea scoop)

    View this post on Instagram

    尺八角盆 ホワイトオーク材 ガラス塗料塗布 内蓋付茶入 φ55H60 カバ材 ガラス塗料塗布 /ナラ材 アンモニア燻蒸着色 ガラス塗料塗布 2種 茶杓 クロガキ材 蘇芳染拭漆 #八角盆 #茶入 #茶杓 #蘇芳染拭漆 ___ ようやく寒くなってきたのか?とはいえ、 なんだかもうひとつ晩秋っぽさを感じられないのですが、 日の短さに季節を感じると言ったところでしょうか。 画像の茶入れ。 ナラ材の物はいずれもアンモニアガスで着色していますが、 材が違うとこれくらい発色が違う、 という事があるようです。 産地の問題なのか、 年輪幅の問題なのか、 暴露時間がそれほど影響しているわけでも無いように感じています、 今のところは。 この週末は岡山のハーフロータスさんでお待ちしております。 23日はお店に着くのが2時過ぎ頃になってしまうかもしれませんが、 皆様のお出掛けをお待ちしております。 <(_ _)> _ 2018/11/17・18・23-25 田澤祐介 木工作品展 於:うつわやhalf lotus 〒700-0823 岡山県岡山市丸の内2-12-14 1F 営業時間:12:00-18:00 在廊予定:11/23・24 #うつわやhalflotus #うつわやハーフロータス #岡山 #岡山市 #うつわや

    森想木工舎 田澤祐介 TAZAWA Yusukeさん(@2thinkforest)がシェアした投稿 –

    Chashaku is a long spoon used to scoop matcha powder. It originally came from China and was initially made of ivory or tortoiseshell. Later on, many people believed that metal spoons can damage the tea bowls and thus started making them with bamboo. Chashaku has a long neck with a leaf shaped scoop. The greatest tea master of all time, Sen no Rikyu of the Sengoku period, is said to have designed the bamboo chashaku. It is considered as one of the functional items of a tea ceremony.

    Without the aforementioned three tools, a tea ceremony is incomplete. These utensils have a special place in Japanese culture or way of life.

    Related Articles:
    The Delicate Art of the Japanese Tea Ceremony
    3 Schools for Learning the Beautiful Art of the Japanese Tea Ceremony