Japanese Teaware Vendor Recommendations

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teatray
Posts: 172
Joined: Sun Dec 12, 2021 4:46 am
Location: Sofia, Bulgaria

Wed Dec 29, 2021 10:21 pm

Thanks a lot, I registered with FJ and it seems nice & straightforward so far, but also very, very dangerous, addiction-wise :mrgreen:.
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teatray
Posts: 172
Joined: Sun Dec 12, 2021 4:46 am
Location: Sofia, Bulgaria

Tue Jul 19, 2022 7:20 am

I can recommend Asahido Gallery in Kyoto (website | online shop). They have teaware, vases, sake and other pots. Focus is Kyo-yaki / Kiyomizu-yaki but they also sell other stuff.

The prices are local and they also take off the Japanese sales tax (10%) before shipping internationally. For the items I looked at, this resulted in better deals than some western-facing shops (esp. those quoting prices in USD without accounting for its sharp rise). For example, the spotted gray-on-blue Yuteki sake cup by Kamada Koji costs:
  • JPY 30K on Asahdio [equiv. $219]
  • JPY 33K on Sazen [equiv. $240] (local Japanese price but without discounting 10% tax; seems to be the usual pricing stragegy at Sazen, also for tea, which results reasonable prices overall)
  • JPY 41K (equiv.) on AN [$300]
  • JPY 45K (equiv.) on Sazen [$330], if shopping cart is in USD instead of JPY (albeit with free delivery in this case)—I'd avoid that
Ratios were similar for the stuff I got (Izumi Yoshinori Ryusei Cup for JPY 20K; previously bought elsewhere for JPY 22K which didn't exclude local tax as it was shipped to a proxy shopper; AN has a single piece, priced at JPY 32K equiv.).

Shipping to Europe was quick and well-priced via DHL. One of the items was out of spec (cup was 25% wider & 22% shorter than webshop description and my old cup to which it was to be paired), but the owner was super friendly and offered all reasonable options, incl. discount & replacement (for which he took pictures of all variants he had in stock).
botlofchaz
Posts: 11
Joined: Fri Aug 12, 2022 1:38 pm
Location: Chicago

Mon Sep 19, 2022 12:23 am

Hey all. Is anyone privy on how to make a purchase from Hojo these days? I've emailed multiple times with questions, asking for an invoice for some tea and a pot, etc. I've received one response in the early going in the now long email chain, which started about 3 weeks ago. I know folks have had similar issues in the past. I'm starting to wonder if money will be better spent with Asako or Artistic Nippon, who have been so quick to respond and helpful to boot. Thanks!
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teatray
Posts: 172
Joined: Sun Dec 12, 2021 4:46 am
Location: Sofia, Bulgaria

Mon Sep 19, 2022 12:41 am

Ordered twice (both this year). First order was accepted after 1 email, second one took 3 emails. Annoying, but not personal, it seems. I'd just retry every once in a while. To me, the teas are worth the hassle (don't have any of the teaware). Dunno if it makes a difference but I write as few words as possible and paste a clear spreadsheet with names, codes, quantities & pack sizes, etc.--no questions or other stuff in the order email.
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Bok
Vendor
Posts: 5268
Joined: Wed Oct 04, 2017 8:55 am
Location: Taiwan

Mon Sep 19, 2022 3:45 am

botlofchaz wrote:
Mon Sep 19, 2022 12:23 am
Hey all. Is anyone privy on how to make a purchase from Hojo these days? I've emailed multiple times with questions, asking for an invoice for some tea and a pot, etc. I've received one response in the early going in the now long email chain, which started about 3 weeks ago. I know folks have had similar issues in the past. I'm starting to wonder if money will be better spent with Asako or Artistic Nippon, who have been so quick to respond and helpful to boot. Thanks!
Yeah, it is typical. Hojo is well known for slow and often very tardive replies...
faj
Posts: 684
Joined: Mon Oct 14, 2019 6:45 am
Location: Quebec

Mon Sep 19, 2022 6:15 am

botlofchaz wrote:
Mon Sep 19, 2022 12:23 am
Hey all. Is anyone privy on how to make a purchase from Hojo these days? I've emailed multiple times with questions, asking for an invoice for some tea and a pot, etc. I've received one response in the early going in the now long email chain, which started about 3 weeks ago.
I have made a few purchases in the past, none have be quickly dealt with, but all eventually worked. I typically avoid sending several emails in a row. Rather, after sending an email, if it has not been answered within a few weeks, I send a gentle reminder referring to my previous message (including a copy), to keep the mental load at a minimum on the other end. Waiting for weeks for an answer is typical.
botlofchaz
Posts: 11
Joined: Fri Aug 12, 2022 1:38 pm
Location: Chicago

Mon Sep 19, 2022 12:34 pm

Thanks for the replies. I'll give it another try or two and see if I hear anything back.
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Pants404
Posts: 70
Joined: Mon Dec 11, 2017 8:16 pm
Location: Adelaide, South Australia, Australia

Thu Sep 22, 2022 6:27 pm

Over the last two years I have emailed hojo about multiple items. The only time I got a response from him was almost instant and it was to tell me the item was not available. Three times without responses is enough for me to give up trying to deal with him.
botlofchaz
Posts: 11
Joined: Fri Aug 12, 2022 1:38 pm
Location: Chicago

Thu Sep 22, 2022 10:45 pm

Pants404 wrote:
Thu Sep 22, 2022 6:27 pm
Over the last two years I have emailed hojo about multiple items. The only time I got a response from him was almost instant and it was to tell me the item was not available. Three times without responses is enough for me to give up trying to deal with him.
I finally got a reply and invoice sent over after 3 or 4 follow up emails. I've never ordered from him so we will see if quality of tea is worth all of the persistence.
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Bok
Vendor
Posts: 5268
Joined: Wed Oct 04, 2017 8:55 am
Location: Taiwan

Fri Sep 23, 2022 12:35 am

botlofchaz wrote:
Thu Sep 22, 2022 10:45 pm
I finally got a reply and invoice sent over after 3 or 4 follow up emails. I've never ordered from him so we will see if quality of tea is worth all of the persistence.
In my experience of trying a few teas, the quality is definitely there. Also, some teaware is only available via Hojo, for example the outstanding Kobiwako clay.
botlofchaz
Posts: 11
Joined: Fri Aug 12, 2022 1:38 pm
Location: Chicago

Fri Sep 23, 2022 6:03 pm

Good to know @Bok. Forgot to mention that I picked up a kobiwako hohin in addition to the tea. So much good said about the clay on the forum that I had to see what all of the buzz is about.
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LeoFox
Posts: 1420
Joined: Tue Sep 01, 2020 4:01 pm
Location: Washington DC

Wed Sep 28, 2022 4:02 pm

botlofchaz wrote:
Fri Sep 23, 2022 6:03 pm
Good to know Bok. Forgot to mention that I picked up a kobiwako hohin in addition to the tea. So much good said about the clay on the forum that I had to see what all of the buzz is about.
It's a nice clay
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SmartSelect_20220928_170136_Instagram.jpg (494.75 KiB) Viewed 132 times
botlofchaz
Posts: 11
Joined: Fri Aug 12, 2022 1:38 pm
Location: Chicago

Wed Sep 28, 2022 9:16 pm

Nice shibo @LeoFox. Twiddling my thumbs as it makes its way through customs. It will be here soon enough. It looks like you maybe brew Japanese greens in it? Hard to tell from the picture. Any particular pairings you like with the kobiwako? Seems folks like sencha and gaoshan, from the bit I have read here on the forum.
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LeoFox
Posts: 1420
Joined: Tue Sep 01, 2020 4:01 pm
Location: Washington DC

Wed Sep 28, 2022 10:01 pm

botlofchaz wrote:
Wed Sep 28, 2022 9:16 pm
Nice shibo LeoFox. Twiddling my thumbs as it makes its way through customs. It will be here soon enough. It looks like you maybe brew Japanese greens in it? Hard to tell from the picture. Any particular pairings you like with the kobiwako? Seems folks like sencha and gaoshan, from the bit I have read here on the forum.
Sencha in this pic.
nightowl
Posts: 4
Joined: Wed Sep 28, 2022 6:44 pm
Location: Los Angeles, CA

Wed Sep 28, 2022 10:31 pm

Nice thank you for sharing! will check all these out. I found some cool Japanese Teaware at the goodwill the other day but I am glad I found this post!
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