The Kasagi from Hachinohe

It’s taken longer than I planned to finish this post, partially due to sickness, and partially due to the emotional nature of the subject. I wanted to write the post with sensitivity and compassion, so I put it off a bit, got sick, wrote some, waited, wrote some more, and finally edited it. Hopefully I met my goal and you readers can share a moment with me about this amazing story. On the 2nd, my partner took me to the viewing of a pair of kasagi at the Portland Japanese Garden. It was a humbling and somewhat surreal visit to the garden, the bustling sale in the main pavilion and vibrantly healthy koi (a welcome sight after the previous koi were lost in the winter of 2009), juxtaposed with the solemn serenity in the viewing area behind the pavilion. Here, overlooking the city and Mt. Hood were two sea-worn kasagi, the lintel of a torii gate, resting peacefully on top of carefully carved wood blocks with small offerings of rice and salt water beneath them. Nearby was a table covered in pens and origami paper for people to write wishes to be folded into cranes – blessings from Portland toContinue readingThe Kasagi from HachinoheContinue readingThe Kasagi from Hachinohe

Tea Review: Misty Mountain Oolong

Tea Name: Misty Mountain Oolong Type: Shan Lin Xi (Winter 2014) GaoShan Cha Region/Elevation: Taiwan, high elevation Company: Beautiful Taiwan Tea Brewing Style: 1 tsp/8 oz of water, 3 minutes, ~190°F Aroma: Leafy oolong and wet forest scent, very faint floral. Appearance: Pale amber-green. Taste: Light body, no tannin. Clean leafy taste with buttery notes and a hint of kombu. Refreshing. Aftertaste: Short-lasting, leaving almost no lingering taste. Buttery notes linger longest. … Continue readingTea Review: Misty Mountain Oolong