Expatriates Dive In: Tea Ceremony & Kimono Hospitality


The tea ceremony is a popular experience among foreign visitors to Japan. The tea ceremony is very popular because it offers the experience of actually drinking tea on the spot.

So, which points of the tea ceremony are most popular among foreigners?

In this issue, I would like to share with you what is the tea ceremony overseas. We would like to share with you some of the experiences that our expatriates have had with the tea ceremony overseas!

What is the Tea Ceremony from a Foreign Perspective?

Okakura Tenshin’s Book of tea

If you are interested in “[Examples of Japanese hospitality and cultural experiences practiced by expatriates],” please refer to this article.

Reference article: 【Practice by expatriates! Examples of Japanese Hospitality and Cultural Experiences

In the Meiji era, “Bushido” and “The Book of Tea” were two of the best-selling books about Japanese culture written by Japanese in English.

The author of the tea book is Okakura Tenshin, who founded what is now the Faculty of Fine Arts at Tokyo University of the Arts.

His achievements are all important in terms of Japanese culture, but among them, the influence of his “Tea Book” written in English was international.

In 1906, Tenshin, who was the head of the Department of Chinese and Japanese Art at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, published this book from a New York publishing house.

Japan is long for a long time Japan has been isolated from the rest of the world for a long time. isolated from the rest of the world, the development of the tea ceremony development of the tea ceremony the development of the tea ceremony.

Our Dwelling, customs clothing, food, and ceramic lacquerware, painting painting, etc. — even literature. even literature — all in the shadows. all have their shadows echoes the effects of the

Those who wish to study Japanese culture must be aware of the impact of this echo the existence of cannot ignore the existence of The existence of this influence cannot be ignored. The New translation The Book of Tea P17 P17

As stated, the book of tea teaches that not only matters related to the tea ceremony, but also all aspects of Japanese life are based on the spirit of the tea ceremony.

This book must have been very powerful in the world situation of the time, as it was a very strong statement of Japan’s position in the East against the West.

Tea ceremony experience for dignitaries and state guests

When dignitaries and state guests visit Japan, you often see them experiencing the tea ceremony in the media.

The tea ceremony experience is still one of the most representative Japanese cultural experiences in Japan.

It is very famous that former Prime Minister Nakasone himself served the tea ceremony to former President Reagan.

The tea ceremony is a special space in which people are invited to sit together in a tea ceremony on an equal footing.

A cup of tea in the serenity of the tea ceremony is a relaxing experience for anyone.

The peace of mind is a moment that we would like to offer to you because you are a dignitary.

Tea Ceremony and Kimono

The tea ceremony experience with kimono rental plans seems to be very popular.

Of course, you can enjoy it as it is, but I would like to wear a kimono because it is a good opportunity.

And I want to experience Japan in kimono! It is evident that the image of kimono and the tea ceremony is becoming more and more linked to the increasing number of foreigners who want to experience Japan in kimono.

The tea ceremony is the act of receiving tea through a series of meticulously prescribed movements.

By performing each of these actions in turn, you serve tea to the other person.

In it, the movements, the way you walk, everything is defined.

In this strict atmosphere, the tea is served with a straight back,

The elegance and dignity of the kimono.

The tea ceremony experience is a great way for foreigners to experience Japan with their whole body.

Japanese Hospitality

The essence of hospitality lies in the tea ceremony.

Omotenashi originated in the tea ceremony master Sen no Rikyu’s idea of “greeting others with a heart that is neither backwards nor forwards.

The art of tea ceremony is filled with the spirit of hospitality for guests.

The Japanese mind is a place of respect and care for others, no matter how small, and can be read by experiencing the “place” without using words.

Isn’t such a dialogue of the heart and soul that the tea ceremony has to offer also a reason for its popularity?

Why do foreigners like tea ceremony?

Wabi-sabi spirit

In the tea ceremony, the spirit of wabi and sabi is important.

Wabi-sabi is one of the Japanese aesthetic senses.

It refers to a consciousness that tries to find spiritual fulfillment in poverty and lack.

The beauty of the quietness of the place is naturally deep and rich.

It is said to be the central idea of Japanese culture that impermanence is beautiful.

It was the English potter Bernard Leach who popularized this theory of wabi-sabi abroad.

He presented the concept as “Wabi, Sabi and Shibui” as one of the Japanese aesthetic senses.

Bernard Leech, who had been in close contact with Kotaro Takamura while studying in England, was very interested in Japan.

Together with Yanagi Muneyoshi and others, he established a new genre of art called “folk crafts,” which is based on the aesthetic sense of tools found in the lives of ordinary people,

Together with Muneyoshi Yanagi and others, he founded the Japan Folk Art Museum.

Even today, “Wabi, Sabi and Shibui” is considered an important theory in Japanese design aesthetics overseas.

Japanese Sweets – Matcha Flavor and Wagashi

In recent years, matcha green tea flavor has become a big boom worldwide.

Even among foreign snacks, products with the word “Macha” in the flavor are now being seen.

Matcha flavor has appeared in the works of famous chocolatiers and patissiers, and matcha-flavored drinks can be ordered at cafes.

Matcha-flavored chocolates and cookies are also very popular as souvenirs for foreigners.

And the popularity of Japanese sweets cannot be underestimated.

Wagashi is a profound world, filled with the seasons of Japan.

Wagashi served at tea ceremonies are imbued with seasonality and meaning, and the names of wagashi can be seen in the scenery.

The Japanese cultural experience of making such wagashi is very popular, and the cute and delicately flavored wagashi are very popular among foreigners from Asian countries, where food culture is close.

Practice overseas hospitality with a simple tea ceremony

tray-side dish (e.g. at a restaurant)

Bon-teimae is an easy way to enjoy the art of tea ceremony using a tray.

In Omotesenke, it is an abbreviated version of the obon-dotsu.

In Urasenke, it is called Bon-ryori-desen,

Since the tea ceremony can be performed only on the tray, you can enjoy the tea ceremony anywhere.

When people enjoy a simple tea ceremony overseas, they will be very pleased if they are entertained with this Bon-Deppan style.

Of course, we usually have the tea ceremony in the tea room, but it is a fun time to experience the tea ceremony, including the drinking and preparation of matcha tea.

If you prepare a chashaku (tea scoop) and a chasen (tea whisk) from Japan, you can manage to procure the rest locally.

Matcha is also easily available overseas in organic stores,

It is best if you can bring your own matcha bowl, but it is also fun to find a bowl with a taste that you can substitute at a local flea market or by a ceramic artist.

Enjoy the atmosphere of the tea ceremony with close friends, even if it is not perfect.

Such tea ceremonies abroad are also chic.

Influence of Japanese Films

If you are in a big city abroad, you can get Japanese sweets, but they are usually very rare.

Especially with regard to azuki beans, it is quite common to find people in the West, where it is not customary to eat sweet beans, who do not like anko (red bean paste).

After the 2015 screening of Naomi Kawase’s film “An,” we asked ourselves, what is anko? What does it taste like? I have been asked many times.

When it was being shown, cans of adzuki beans and red bean paste had even disappeared from the shelves of Japanese grocery stores.

The shopkeeper also said that thanks to the movie, sales of anko (red bean paste), which had not been very popular in the past, increased! The store clerk said, “Thanks to the movie, sales of anko (red bean paste), which was not so popular before, increased!

And there were quite a few foreigners who said they became interested in the tea ceremony through the movie “Nichinichi Kore Koujitsu” directed by Tatsushi Omori in 2018.

A woman who has discovered and been attracted to the charms of the tea ceremony experiences a great spiritual adventure that takes place in a tea room every day.

I now have a more concrete image of the tea ceremony.

and more foreigners are visiting local tea ceremony classes.

Casual tea ceremony at a home party

“I cook azuki beans with my foreign friends, make wagashi (Japanese sweets), and serve them with matcha (powdered green tea) prepared in a tray.”

and other tea ceremony experiences are also recommended.

Azuki beans have recently become readily available in organic stores overseas due to health concerns and other factors.

If you use a pressure cooker, you can easily make anko (red bean paste) in a short time, so you can make it on the same day with your friends who want to know how to make it.

And of course, you can make it the day before.

We will make dorayaki and manju, which can be made with flour that is easily available anywhere in the world.

Dorayaki is especially familiar because it is like a pancake.

Everyone was excited to see Japanese sweets made with local ingredients and to try their first cup of real matcha (powdered green tea), which was prepared in a tray-dressing method.

It is a fairly homemade and homey tea ceremony experience, but it was very well received.


The tea ceremony is one of the major cornerstones of Japanese culture.

The philosophy, aesthetics, and theory of the tea ceremony are naturally ingrained in the lives of all Japanese people, and it is truly the culture of Japan itself.

The tea ceremony has attracted a great deal of attention from abroad, and its influence on various genres can be seen in the history of the tea ceremony.

A once-in-a-lifetime hospitality.

The spirit will be truly a moment worthy of a traveler.

Reference URL: https://www.city.shimotsuke.lg.jp/manage/contents/upload/58218a08c39f9.pdf