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Admit it, matcha is one of the things that comes to mind whenever you hear about Japan. The boom in cafes and milk tea shops in the Philippines has brought several tea flavors from eastern Asia, and matcha always had a special section on the menus of most shops. However, the matcha we consume is not the same as the matcha that was consumed in the high culture of Japan, or what we read in history books. In some way, the difference among forms, experiences, and knowledge about Japanese tea is the lingering distance between our imagination and a reality that is yet to be experienced.
If you are an avid tea drinker and a Japan enthusiast like me, you will want to read more about the history of tea in the country. You will find that Japanese tea has quite an importance. They have this very formal tea ceremony called chanoyu or sadō, a tea production capital in Uji, tea expressions like chabashira (upright-floating tea stalk) which is an omen of good luck, and other various tea practices and expressions.


Christel S. Sobredo (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.) works for the Center for Migrant Advocacy and is pursuing her master’s degree in Asian Studies, majoring in Japan at the Asian Center, University of the Philippines Diliman. Her research interests include student migration, regional revitalization in Japan, and the social costs of labor migration in the Philippines.

Article Information

Type of Manuscript: Travel Narrative
Volume, Issue, Year: Volume 58, Issue 1, Year 2022
Pages: 173–177

Back to Asian Studies 58 (1): 2022