Una fabbrica di tè giapponese a Uji

November 5, 2012

Ikeda Ami, Kusano Yurika

Uji, vicino a Kyoto, è un luogo adatto alla produzione del tè, perché vi cala la foschia dall’omonimo fiume. È stato il primo luogo di produzione del tè giapponese, e Uji-cha, il tè di Uji, è ancor oggi famosissimo in tutto il paese.

Ci sono varie specie di tè, per esempio: ryokucha (tè verde giapponese), uloncha (il tè oolong cinese), kocha (tè nero). I vari tipi di tè sono prodotti dalla foglia di un sempreverde della famiglia della camelia. Il tè nero è ottenuto facendo fermentare completamente la foglia raccolta, il tè Ulon è fermentato a metà, invece il tè verde è prodotto senza fermentazione. Ci sono 10 specie di ryokucha, e la gamma dei sapori si può ampliare tramite un’ulteriore tostatura o o l’aggiunta di riso arrostito. Per esempio hojicha, genmaicha ecc.

Il maccha è tè verde in polvere, usato anche nella famosa cerimonia del tè. Ci sono tanti stabilimenti che producono maccha, ma ve ne vogliamo presentare uno il cui maccha ha un elevata quantità di nutrienti, grazie al particolare processo di lavorazione. Il tè è tenuto al riparo dai raggi del sole per più di 20 giorni, è asciugato senza essere strofinato, e dopo aver cotto a vapore i germogli si macina solo la parte interna della foglia con una macina di pietra. Dopo la macinatura è pronto per essere bevuto.

Il maccha è efficace contro l’ipertensione, per prevenire l’invecchiamento, il diabete, il cancro, l’influenza, le carie, come bevanda dietetica e per tante altre cose.

 

Vari tipi di tè

Vari tipi di tè

Storia dello stabilimento

Verso la seconda metà del 17° secolo Kyujiro Koyama, un pioniere della coltivazione del tè verde, cominciò a coltivare e produrre il tè a Uji. Questa è l’origine della ditta Marukyu Koyama. Con la quarta genezione di proprietari cominciò la vendita del tè, e con l’ottava il mercato fu esteso a tutto il Giappone.

Il motto della ditta è: nella produzione del tè la cosa più importante è la qualità. Marukyu Koyama ha ottenuto molti premi, in riconoscimento della cura dedicata al tè giapponese durante tutto il processo produttivo, dalla coltivazione alla vendita.

Foto di premi e riconoscimenti per Marukyu Koyama

Premi e riconoscimenti per Marukyu Koyama

Introduzione del tè in Giappone

Il tè fu introdotto in Giappone dalla Cina. Secondo i documenti antichi, nell’epoca Nara (8° secolo) si faceva già la cerimonia del tè, e nella successiva epoca Heian i monaci buddisti Kukai (Kobo Daishi, 774-835) e Saicho (Dengyo Daishi, 767-822) hanno introdotto nuovi tipi di tè e nuovi modi di berlo dalla Cina. Si pensa che la coltura dell’albero del tè in Giappone risalga a questo periodo.

Foto di Marukyu Koyama

Marukyu Koyama

Visita alla fabbrica:

Una visita a Marukyu Koyama comprende:

1. Proiezione di video sulla produzione del té dalla coltivazione alla lavorazione, e i dolci fatti con il maccha.

2. Visita allo stabilimento di produzione del maccha con spiegazione del processo.

3. Visita al laboratorio dove si controlla la qualità del prodotto finito.

4. Visita alla stanza tradizionale del tè con esperienza della cerimonia del tè.

5. Preparazione e degustazione del maccha, con assaggio di dolci tradizionali confezionati appositamente per la cerimonia del tè.

Foto di maccha e dolci tradizionali

Maccha e dolci tradizionali

A Marukyu Koyama si può anche comprare una confezione regalo di maccha e mangiare il gelato di maccha e hojicha.

È buonissimo!

Foto di gelati di maccha e ojicha

Gelati di maccha e ojicha

Foto dello spaccio

Lo spaccio

Accesso

La stazione più vicina è Mukaijima della linea Kintetsu. Ci vogliono circa 25 minuti dalla stazione di Kyoto. Da Mukaijima ci vogliono 5 minuti in taxi.

Tempo necessario per vistate la fabbrica: circa 90 minuti. Si può fare una visita più breve, specificandolo al momento della prenotazione.

Orario: dal lunedì al sabato, mattina 10-12, pomeriggio 13-16. Poiché a volte il sabato è chiuso, conviene informarsi prima.

Numero di persone in una visita: 2-40 persone.

Prezzo: la visita  è gratis.

Nel prenotare la visita bisogna specificare: il giorno e l’ora della visita; nome e cognome di un rappresentante del gruppo; indirizzo; numero di telefono.

Per prenotare è necessario inviare i dati a uno dei recapiti seguenti entro una settimana prima del giorno desiderato.

Telefono: 0774-20-0909

Fax: 0774-28-2288

Indirizzo: Marukyu Koyamaen Makishima Kojo, Terauchi 86, Kokuracho, Uji 611-0042, Giappone

E-mail accessibile dal sito web di Marukyu Koyama:

Http://www.marukyu-koyamaen.co.jp/top.html

Le spiegazioni sono solo in giapponese, per cui conviene portare un interprete.

The Tale of Genji

by Hideaki Kato

Introduction

The Tale of Genji is a historical literary work. It was written in the middle of the Heian era in Japan (around 800 to 1400 AD) and is based in the city of Kyoto at that time. It was written over 1000 years ago so it is very old. It has been very popular for a long time.

Murasaki Shikibu

The Tale of Genji was written by Murasaki Shikibu who had talent as a writer and poet .Those talents were recognized by a number of people and she served the Emperor’s daughter. The Tale of Genji was written at that time. In those days, Heian nationalism was very influential. It was the Japanese original noble culture, and kana script in this way developed. Kana is the original and formal Japanese script and derives from the kanji script which was originally from China and is also used in Korea too. Therefore, kana script is used in The Tale of Genji.

The Story

The tale of Genji is an epic romance story, comprised of 54 volumes. Those volumes are separated from part 1 to part 3. In addition, this story is written in Japanese style, intermixed with waka poetry. There are many characters in this story and most of them are nobles of the Heian era. This story is written about their loves. So it has been written realistic of the aristocracy culture. The novel’s hero is Hikaru Genji who is a son of the emperor. He was very handsome and was in love with many girls in his lifetime. But he often had affairs with many girls and he has been explained the pain time. Uji is the main stage of the second half of the story and the next hero is the son of Hikaru Genji .Uji is very important in this story. There is a museum and there are sightseeing spots related to the Tale of Genji in Uji. We can realize the history there.

Popularity

The Tale of Genji is called the greatest masterpiece in the history of Japanese literature. However, not all people could read it when it was first written and it was mainly nobles who read it in the Middle Ages. Therefore other nations were not able to obtain it either. It was around the Edo era when print technology developed in Japan and the common people came to be able to have it in their hand. Many people were able to read it because Akiko Yosano translated it into the contemporary Japanese language.

Now The Tale of Genji is not only a literary work but represented in comics and movies. As a result, it is known by both young and old people. It was in about 1882 that The Tale of Genji was first translated into English and The Tale of Genji has now been translated into many foreign languages. Therefore, it is a work that is loved not only in Japan but around the world.

Tsujiri

by Yumi Morimoto; Naomi Hamada

Fundada em 1860, Tsujiri é uma loja especializada em chá japonês de Uji (Quioto).

Em 1978 foi inaugurado o Charyo Tsujiri, um pequeno estabelecimento onde todos podem provar e descobrir os sabores do tradicional chá nipônico.

Quer a loja Tsujiri quer o salão de chá Charyo Tsujiri, situados no famoso distrito de Gion, atraem não só muitos turistas, mas também os próprios habitantes de Quioto.

De entre os muitos sabores à escolha no cardápio de Charyo Tsujiri, podemos aconselhar o seu famoso sorvete. Este é muito procurado, especialmente pelas mulheres, pois contém em si o paladar inconfundível do chá japonês.

Contudo, uma das especialidades deste estabelecimento é o sorvete com pão-de-ló de macha (o chá verde japonês).

Vamos provar o paladar tradicional do Japão com seu famoso parfait de Charyo Tsujiri, em Gion!

Genji-Monogatari in Uji

by Natsuka Kisaichi
Touristen besuchen in Kyoto fast nur das Zentrum, aber es gibt auch viele Sehenswürdigkeiten in der Umgebung, z. B. in Uji. Hier können Sie die Schauplätze der Genji-Monogatari sehen.

Die Genji-Monogatari ist ein Roman, der vor ungefähr eintausend Jahren geschrieben worden ist. Insgesamt besteht er aus 54 Büchern und enthält auch etwa 800 Kurzgedichte (japanisch: Tanka).

Der Roman ist das bedeutendste literarische Werk der japanischen Literatur.

Der Roman erzählt aus dem Leben des Helden des Romanes Hikaru Genji, seines Sohnes Kaoru, seines Enkelkindes Hoheit Ninoumiya und dreier Edelfräulein.

Buch

Titel

KAORUs Lebensjahr

45

Hashihime

20.- 22. Lebensjahr

46

Shiigamoto

23.- 24. Lebensjahr

47

Agemaki

24. Lebensjahr

48

Sawarabi

25. Lebensjahr

49

Yadorigi

25.- 26. Lebensjahr

50

Azumaya

26. Lebensjahr

51

Ukifune

27. Lebensjahr

52

Kagerou

27. Lebensjahr

53

Tenarai

27.- 28. Lebensjahr

54

Yumeno’ukihashi

28. Lebensjahr

Nur die letzten 10 der 54 Bücher der Genji-Monogatari beziehen sich auf Uji, mannennt sie Uji-Jūjō.

Die Tabelle links zeigt die Titel der Bücher und um welches Lebensjahr von Kaoru es in dem betreffenden Buchgeht.

Am Ujigawa-Fluss stehte ein Steinfigur von Murasaki Shikibu, die die Geschichten geschrieben hat.
Vielleicht hat sie den Roman hier geschrieben.

Steindenkmal von Murasakishikibu

Der Roman ist Fiktion, aber viele historische bemerkenwerte Orte, die im Text erwähnt werden, liegen am Ujigawa-Fluss. Die Leute, die den Roman lieben, bemühen sich, diese Orte zu erhalten, damit sie nicht in Vergessenheit geraten.

Das ist eine Steinfigur von Hoheit Ninomiya und Edelfäulein Ukifune. Dahinter sieht man eine Brücke über den Ujigawa-Fluss, die Asagiri-Bashi.
Ukifune soll sich in großer Liebesnot dort ertränkt haben.

Denkmal von Niounomiya und Ukifune

Asagiribashi Brücke

Das ist der Byodoin-Hoodo-Tempel. In der Genji-Monogatari erscheint das Gebäude, das ein Wohnsitz von Minamotonotoru war, als ein Wohnsitz von Hikaru Genji.

Dieses Gebäude ist auch auf der Rückseite der gegenwärtigen 10-Yen-Münzen abgebildet.

Byodoin-Hoodo-Tempel

Am Ujigawa-Fluss gibt es zahlreiche Geschäfte, wo man echten grünen Tee oder Eis mit Matcha-Geschmack (pulverisierter Grüner Tee) essen kann.

Machen Sie sich ein paar schöne Stunden in Uji!

Byodoin

by Akiko Kagawa; Fumiaki Kai

If you are interested in Japan, you may want to find out more about Byodoin. Have you ever looked closely at the Japanese 10 yen coin? Almost all countries have coins that depict something of their life and culture. In Japan, an image of Byodoin is stamped on the 10 yen coin.

This building is famous as a world heritage site, so we would like to introduce here the five main buildings that make up the complex.

Houdo

Houdo is the main building in the center of Byodoin, and is surrounded by a body of water named Aji Pond. It was built at the end of the Heian era (794 – 1185) by Fujiwara Yorimichi (a very famous person in Japan) as the Amida Buddha Hall. The most outstanding feature is how it is situated like a palace, seemingly floating on a magical carpet of water. “Houdo” means phoenix, and the reason for this is that the outline of the building itself resembles a bird resting on water. It appears especially beautiful when its image is reflected on the surface of the surrounding pond. In the main building there are many Amitabha Buddha statues. However, like the ceiling and walls which were painted to a special design, time has managed to fade some of the original glory. In the middle of this building, there is a large temple bell called Bonsyo. This impressive piece was once located south of Houdo, but was moved into the center at some point. You can see it in Byodoin Houshoukan which we will introduce next.

Byodoin Houshoukan

On March 1st, 2001, Byodoin unveiled a new museum named Hoshokan, to house the many precious treasures the temple has to offer. This building was devised especially to make use of optical fiber lighting, and through the balanced combination of nature and space one can best appreciate the artwork on offer.

Special Feature

By employing the largest glass wall in Japan, the designers have created a tremendous feeling of space for the viewer. Also, with the use of computer graphics technology, the visitor can experience a visit to the interior areas of Byodoin which remain off-limits to the public. This virtual tour takes 50 minutes, so if you haven’t run out of time we suggest you try it.

Site space: 30600 square
Building space: 816.04 square
Floor space: 2249.42 square

Jodoin

This building was erected in the late 15th century while Byodoin was under repair, and stands to the north of Houdo. There are some additional treasures here, such as wall pictures and statues of Buddha.

Saisyoin

This building was built in 1654, so it is not as old as the others. Originally intended as housing for priests, it gradually came to be known as Saishoin.

The Area Around Byodoin

This area is considered to be of great historical importance, and there are many temples and shrines in the vicinity of Byodoin.

Ujigami Shrine

This is another designated world heritage site, and around 10 minutes walk from Uji Station. This shrine, built in 901, is neither very famous nor fancy looking but was very important to the people who lived in the area at that time. It was built before Byodoin, because the people constructing Byodoin needed a place to rest and stay. Therefore, this shrine doubled as a hotel and also a place to worship.

Mimuroto Temple

You can get a real feel for the seasons in this temple because Mimuroto Temple has an abundance of flowers, so whenever you go there, you will find flowers blooming according to the season.

There is a very interesting statue located here called “Houshougyu”, which is actually a statue of a cow. The legend goes that long ago, a local man had many problems because he was the owner of very weak cattle. This man paid homage to the Goddess of Mercy in this shrine to change his situation. One day, this Goddess acted on his wishes and made his cattle so strong that he won local competitions with them. Now it is said that if you touch the ball the statue of the cow is biting, you too can gain the luck you need to win. So when you want to beat somebody or win something, it is a good idea to go there.

Jusanjunoto (Pagoda)

In Uji River, there is a sandbank, and this Jusanjunoto, or pagoda, is built on it. When you look at pictures about Japan, you will usually see pagodas of three or five storeys. However, this pagoda has thirteen storeys, making it the one with the most storeys in Japan. Due to flooding, this pagoda has been leveled many times, with the longest time being submerged, 150 years. There are no floods nowadays though, so this tower stands proud for everyone to see.

Amazing tea!

by Fumiaki Kai and Akiko Kagawa

Green tea is the most surprising tea in the world. Although, green tea, black tea and oolong tea are basically produced from the same leaves, green tea can boast a number of beneficial effects. It’s also used in a variety of different foods and products such as sweets, snacks, perfume, bedclothes and so on. Uji in the south of Kyoto, is one of the most famous places for green tea in Japan. People say that Uji’s green tea is No.1. Have you ever tasted this attractive tea? We would like to talk about it here.

History

The main tea that is drunk all over Japan now, is green tea. However, it is fast becoming famous in other countries, too. It is said that green tea came from China in the 9th century, and at that time the color of the tea was brown like oolong tea. Due to it’s lofty status, only professional tea teachers in Uji were permitted to grow green tea at this time.

Effects and Benefits

You can receive a lot of health benefits if you drink green tea, and catechin is the most effective constituent in it. All teas contain this constituent, but green tea has more than its fair share of this high quality ingredient. Catechin is an antibacterial property and prevents oxidation. It is said that this can help protect against diseases like cancer, as well as slow the effects of ageing and adult’s disease. Polyphenol is a kind of catechin, and green tea contains 100 times the amount found in wine, and 50 times that found in cocoa. This makes it very valuable indeed as a health supplement.

As you know, vitamin C is very important for us, and green tea has more than any other tea. Vitamin C is known to be good for preventing freckles, and rough skin caused by a lack of good vitamin C intake. It also works on neutralizing alcohol which means it’s very good for hangovers!

Did you also know that tea can reduce unpleasant odors. If you have a dry tea bag, you can try putting it in your bed or your shoes and wherever else you may want to remove bad odors. Moreover, there is another wonderful effect which helps prevent dental problems. Green tea contains fluorine that helps make teeth strong, and if you eat snacks with your tea, you can avoid dental worries without thinking about it.

Green Tea Goods

There are many products which make wonderful use of green tea as an ingredient.

  • lotion— green tea contains a lot of catechin, ferment extract and vitamin C. These elements help tighten the skin and give it a healthy glow.
  • soap — this soap is made with a natural dryness and because of this it does not melt easily or produce a lot of foam. It offers excellent moisture retention properties and the long production process gives it real quality.

Green Tea Food Products in Kyoto

As you know, good food is a surefire way to make us happy! There are many kinds of food products that use Uji tea such as rice porridge and buckwheat noodles. So you can enjoy Uji tea at lunch time, too. There is a wide variety of green tea foods available in Kyoto, but some of them contain just a little green tea, or may use only green tea as a colorant. At one shop, Tsujiri, you will not be disappointed, however. Uji tea foods may be a little bitter for some people, but this is real Kyoto style. Whenever you come to Kyoto we suggest going to the famous Uji tea café called “Tsujiri”. This café mainly offers green tea in the form of desserts. They use very high-class Uji tea here and keep their customers happy with many kinds of Japanese style original desserts. The desserts they present are all prepared with the freshest ingredients to maintain the highest standard.

There are three stores in Kyoto:

1. Isetan JR Kyoto Station, 4th Floor.
Tel: 075-352-6622
Business hours 10:00~20:00

2. Nenenomichi Koudaiji Higashiyamaku, Kyoto City
Tel: 075-541-1228
Business hours 11:00~18:00

3. 573-3 Minamigawa Gionnmachi Higashiyamaku, Kyoto City
Tel: 075-561-2257
Business hours 10:00~22:00 (Saturdays, Sundays and Holidays 10:00~21:00)

I especially recommend the third one because it is the head office. You will probably have to queue up to eat green tea sweets here, but if queuing up is not for you, then I suggest you go there right on opening time. Alternatively, you can buy ice cream or green tea goods as a take-out without having to go to the bother of standing in line.