Premium chefs of Kumamoto


Creative Japanese Dining Zen,
Makoto Morii Select Takema Tea House Koshinraku

In a village near Takema Gorge, renowned for the Hosokawa clan’s Gozen tea “Takema tea,” resides a tea master. He operates a tea house that limits customers to one group per day. Mr. Hirotogawa of Takema Tea House Koshinraku is the person Chef Morii relies on when hosting tea ceremonies.

His grandfather ran a tea house for 90-odd years. After receiving comprehensive training as a tea master, he embarked on an independent journey in 2020, seeking new challenges. He entertains guests with his unique style that incorporates elements of the tea ceremony and Chinese tea. Every morning, he shares the charms of tea on Instagram through his program, “Morning Tea Live.”

He says he started doing this because he is simply happy whenever more people drink tea.

The time spent here, where one can relax and enjoy, commences with green tea and unfolds through oolong tea, black tea, roasted tea, and other recommendations, all to be savored alongside delectable sweets.

“Please don’t drink it with the idea that it’s just tea, as many people are surprised when they take the first sip of the strongly flavored green tea.” With this guidance upfront, they can drink any of the teas, even the ones that taste like soup stock. “If you drink it thinking that it’s tea, you may not like it at all. But that was not the case with me.”

Slowly sipping the tea while talking about its temperature, the origin of the tea leaves, and other tea-related topics, one suddenly realizes that two and a half hours have passed.

His wife, Jun, laughs as she says, “He ends up talking too much when the topic is tea.” She became fascinated with tea when she met her husband. Now, she is studying it.

The Togawas warmly welcome their visitors to spend a leisurely time on this tranquil village hill. It’s advised not to rush back home; when people visit Koshinraku, they refrain from making plans for later, preferring to take off their watches and relax.

Related article: Kumamoto’s abundant food is imbued with the wabi-sabi of Japanese culture, Makoto Morii of Creative Japanese Dining Zen

Store information

Address: 2172, Shiimochi, Kahokumachi, Yamaga City, Kumamoto Prefecture

Business hours: By reservation only

For reservations: Via social network only (reservations required)


Instagram: @ koushinraku_takema


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