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Looking for places to browse: Tokyo

Posted: Sat Feb 09, 2019 12:55 am
by Bok
Dear Teaforum knowledge cloud,

Heading to Tokyo in February, anyone willing to share some good tea-ware related places to check out?
In particular I want to browse Tetsubin kettles, but anything teware related is of interest of course...

In the past, I shockingly found shopping centers of all places sometimes having really nice things :shock:

Thanks in advance, every little scrap is appreciated!
Tokyo is a humungous place and some guidance can save precious time :D

Re: Looking for places to browse: Tokyo

Posted: Sat Feb 09, 2019 12:33 pm
by pedant
http://kougeihin.jp.e.oo.hp.transer.com/aoyama/ (Aoyama Square Traditional Crafts)
https://goo.gl/maps/zy8W6Z2Aefm

you can try this gallery for hq crafts in general, some of it could be teaware.

Re: Looking for places to browse: Tokyo

Posted: Sat Feb 09, 2019 1:56 pm
by Victoria

Re: Looking for places to browse: Tokyo

Posted: Sat Feb 09, 2019 5:47 pm
by Shine Magical
I had wanted to go here but didn’t because it was kind of out of the way

https://www.tripadvisor.com/Restaurant_ ... Kanto.html


I went to a place in Ginza but wasn’t too blown away, don’t remember the name but it had a black inner decor

Re: Looking for places to browse: Tokyo

Posted: Sat Feb 09, 2019 6:46 pm
by Bok
Thanks everyone, that is already a lot of good clues on where to go! Can’t wait!

Re: Looking for places to browse: Tokyo

Posted: Sun Feb 10, 2019 3:11 am
by pedant
i know you said teaware, but if you want to look at a tea shop in tokyo, i'd check out thés du japon's new shop: https://japaneseteasommelier.wordpress. ... ten-years/

also, i'm glad you're taking the time to ask people in advance. ime, showing up in japan and asking people where to find good tea and teaware simply will not work. people will want to help you but won't be able to. most japanese people know little about tea and don't really care about it. to most there, it's just something to drink for free instead of water.

i wish i could tell you more places to go, but i haven't discovered them yet 😅

unless you get specific recommendations, imo your best bet in general is to look for nice art/antique galleries. that's where i've seen the best stuff.
home goods sections of department stores were a waste of time for me.

if you go beyond tokyo... in kyoto, there are sweet galleries (like asahido -- some crazy antique tetsubin there) by the kiyomizudera. robert yellin's gallery is there as well.

tokoname is also a nice place to visit if you like tokoname yaki.

good luck, and let us know if you find cool places!

Re: Looking for places to browse: Tokyo

Posted: Sun Feb 10, 2019 11:22 am
by debunix
When I visited Tokyo in 2003, I drank tea when we were out, but I was not really 'into' tea yet; and now I wonder if this shop was selling charcoal for tea ceremonies or another purpose; it was close to the most expensive real estate in Tokyo, in Ginza, and was ultra spare chic:

Image

Image

I wonder if there were fabulous tea stores nearby....although in that location, I'd assume you'd be paying a very large premium for the location.

Re: Looking for places to browse: Tokyo

Posted: Sun Feb 10, 2019 12:25 pm
by pizzapotamus
debunix wrote:
Sun Feb 10, 2019 11:22 am
When I visited Tokyo in 2003, I drank tea when we were out, but I was not really 'into' tea yet; and now I wonder if this shop was selling charcoal for tea ceremonies or another purpose; it was close to the most expensive real estate in Tokyo, in Ginza, and was ultra spare chic:

Image

Image

I wonder if there were fabulous tea stores nearby....although in that location, I'd assume you'd be paying a very large premium for the location.
Sorry to disappoint but it looks like they were selling pure goop http://www.tanagokoro.com/english/charcoal/index.html

Re: Looking for places to browse: Tokyo

Posted: Sun Feb 10, 2019 2:34 pm
by debunix
Not disappointing at all. Just the sort of bizarre snake oil you get aimed at the really rich.

Re: Looking for places to browse: Tokyo

Posted: Sun Feb 17, 2019 6:23 am
by Bok
another question to the Japan crowd: If I were too look into getting some Gyokuru, were would a good place in Tokyo be? Including the above listed places.

It is the only Japanese Tea I am really tempted to try in a good quality. Or let's include high quality Sencha. I have had medium-low quality sencha in the past, which has not done any favours to my perception of this kind of tea - personal preference only! - so maybe the top stuff can change my mind...

Re: Looking for places to browse: Tokyo

Posted: Mon Feb 18, 2019 3:08 pm
by pizzapotamus
The previously mentioned Thes du Japon shop should absolutely be able to hook you up with high quality Gyokuro or Sencha, he's also a big fan of offering less common styles such as pan fired kamaira-cha or fermented bancha.

Re: Looking for places to browse: Tokyo

Posted: Mon Feb 18, 2019 6:36 pm
by Bok
pizzapotamus wrote:
Mon Feb 18, 2019 3:08 pm
The previously mentioned Thes du Japon shop should absolutely be able to hook you up with high quality Gyokuro or Sencha, he's also a big fan of offering less common styles such as pan fired kamaira-cha or fermented bancha.
Thanks! I’ll have a look! On that list too is that very old brand Yamatoyama, anyone tried their teas?

Re: Looking for places to browse: Tokyo

Posted: Sat Feb 23, 2019 10:37 pm
by sdotglass
Hi I'm visiting Japan in March / April, @Bok I'd love to learn what you discovered! Thank you so much. Looking to visit farms, teahouses, ceremonies...

Re: Looking for places to browse: Tokyo

Posted: Thu Feb 28, 2019 8:31 am
by Bok
Back and still processing the impressions, second time Tokyo, certainly not the last...

Some first things - folks around here are probably think I'm mad:
- did not buy any tea. Tokyo is a big place and from previous preferences Japanese tea has not been high on my to-do list. I did not have the time to go to a place where you can sample tea. I'd would have only bought in one of those, otherwise the likelihood of getting something I do not like are too high - as nice as the packaging might look... Can also not imagine how good a Gyokuru can still be after sitting god knows how long un-refrigerated on a shelf. Schedule did not allow or coincide with any of the aformentioned shops.

Secondly I saw some of Yamada Sous teapots, a lot of the smurf-blue ones that many around here like, for less than half of what they seem to cost in Western facing shops.

Yamada Jozan III was spotted in Antique shops for 1000-ish which is comparably not too bad, considering his status. Funnily Jozan II is a lot cheaper than III, maybe his style is still too Chinese and not enough Wabi Sabi yet?

What was on my hunting list and what I successfully bought, was a Tetsubin! I got an old one of unknown vintage. What I do know is that it is handmade and not mass produced, due to some telltale signs on it. Need to clean it and will report in due time with pictures. Price was very good, compared to others I saw, both new and old. I started to look for it in the Asakusa area, kitchen ware street and surroundings.

Got the odd cups here and there on my way to other places, but overall I think in terms of teaware, Kyoto is the better place. What I do like about Japan is also that there is price tags on most things, so no negotiating around, it is what it is.

Re: Looking for places to browse: Tokyo

Posted: Thu Feb 28, 2019 3:02 pm
by Victoria
@Bok glad you had a good trip and found a Tetsubin. Would be nice if you shared with members the shops and locations you visited. Yamada Sou prices vary quite a bit, depending on uniqueness of kyusu and artists pricing on select pots they consider superior. What price range did you see?

Regarding collecting Jozan Yamada I and II, there are many kyusu from these two that are not ‘Chinese’ stylistically. I think the pricing is lower because they are not ‘Living National Treasures’, since the allocation was designated after their time as active craftsmen.