Sakura Tea

These days the sakura have started to blossom in Japan. 
In the old days, the Japanese women use to gather sakura flowers (especially the sakura kanzan type) and preserve them in salt.

From these flowers, kept fresh, a special tea was prepared, served at wedding ceremonies or other special occasions. The custom survived until today, even if there are now companies selling sakura tea (made with the same technique). The sakura tea is prepared like this:

  • One or two sakura flowers (or petals, or buds) are put in warm water for about 5 minutes, to remove the salt
  • The flowers are then put in a tea cup
  • Hot water is poured over the sakura flowers and a teaspoon of salt water is added, depending on taste


Travel tip: At the Edo Tokyo Open Air Museum in Koganei Park, groups of volunteers are giving demonstrations of smoking out thatched-roof houses (to protect them against insects), by making a fire in the irori fireplace. On these occasions, tea is also served to the visitors. 
This is where I drank sakura tea for the first time, the cup from this picture.

Author of this article


Muza-chan (real name Lili), is a Romanian travel writer and photographer, living in Bucharest and frequently visiting Japan. She publishes daily photos from Japan, with insights and comments about the areas she visited. She also writes about Japan travel, culture and traditions and her hobbies include pop-culture, music and cuisine. 

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  • I tried sakura tea for the first time last week with some sakura mochi and it was delicious. The tea was very salty but enjoyed it with the sweetness of the mochi.

  • zoomingjapan says:

    I like sakura tea as the flavor is very special, yet quite salty. I’m sure it’s not something everybody likes.
    Usually I always buy all the limited sakura products that you can buy only in spring!
    Mr. Donut just released a few sakura-flavored donuts, for example. They are very delicious! ^^


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