Suikaen Takayama Chasen: Ryo
Bamboo Matcha Whisk made by Suikaen Takayama Chasen.
Whisks for making the perfect matcha tea from Suikaen.
The "Ryo" whisk comes with a pale yellow, green and blue knitted thread.
It takes two to three years to prepare the raw bamboo before making the whisks:
- 3 year old Hachiku(淡竹: Henon bamboo) is cut during the winter season. The cut bamboo is boiled to remove any oils.
- The bamboo is then left to dry with the cold winter wind for 1 to 2 months(Jan~Feb). After the bamboo is dried it is let to sit in storage for 2 to 3 years allowing it to season and completely dry out. - Leaving the bamboo to dry this long increases its flexibility and durability.
- Then after 2 to 3 years, the bamboo is cut to start the Chasen making processes as below.
Chasen Making Process:
- 片木(Hegi): peel one-third of the bamboo skin and divide it into 16 equal parts. Then separate the skin and endodermis in each of the parts, cut out the endodermis.
- 小割(Kowari): divide 1 mm divided into 0.4mm and 0.6mm.
- 味削り(Ajikezuri): Make the all bristles thinner, just like hair.
- 面取り(Mentori): Shave the edge each of the bristles to round off the corners.
- 下編み(Shitaami): Separate inner(0.4mm) and outer(0.6mm) bristles alternately with a thread.
- 上編み(Uwaami): To keep the shape of the Chasen, knit the inner and outer bristles twice.
- 仕上げ(Shiage): Arrange each of the bristles to make beautiful shape.
The entire process of growning, seasoning and making the chasen can take up to 6 years.
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