Asahi Fukuda Tea Tour around Europe

Hello! My name is Asahi Fukuda and between 14th-31st March2024, I held tea gatherings while traveling around Europe. This article is a summary of my experiences and thoughts.

I’ve found that the European curiosity and love for Japanese tea is amazing. Drinking tea is not an ordinary thing like in Japan, and I felt that people try to cherish tea time. Because they didn’t know the etiquette, they asked questions and enjoyed their tea time slowly and carefully. I also felt that I was standing tall. The best thing about this trip was that I was able to make friends who love tea all over Europe.

Currently, I am brewing Japanese tea for customers from all over the world at a tea salon called Higashiya Ginza in Tokyo. I planned a crowdfunding project called “I want to hold tea parties all over Europe!” and visited eight cities in five different European countries. 

Here are the cities I visited and a schedule of my trip:

Vienna, Austria🇦🇹, 15/3-18/3

Budapest, Hungary🇭🇺, 18/3-20/3

Barcelona, ​​Spain🇪🇸, 21/3-25/3

Paris, France🇫🇷, 26/3-27/3

Nice, France🇫🇷, 28/3

Milan, Italy🇮🇹, 29/3

Padua, Italy🇮🇹, 30/3

Rome, Italy🇮🇹, 31/3

In total, we held 10 tea parties, with 55 participants. Among them, I was able to connect with Gabor from Zhao Zhou tea in Budapest, Lavinia from Tea Cup in Milan, Nicoletta from La Finestra Sul Te ​​in Padua, Francesca and Laura from Namas Tey in Rome through the introduction of the Global Japanese Tea Association. Arigatou gozaimashita.

But what was the purpose of this trip? I have been thinking about it since I was preparing for the trip, and still even now after it has ended. My friends around me, told me that I was going to spread the goodness of Japanese tea and spread Japanese culture, but I always felt uncomfortable about that. This is because I have met many people overseas who love Japan and know more about it than we who live in Japan. Especially people who love the tea ceremony and Japanese tea. These are people who learn Japanese on their own and come to visit Japanese tea fields. I felt that it was somehow wrong to convey the charm of Japanese tea to such people. I have connected with the world through the internet, and many people have brewed Japanese tea overseas.

So what is the significance of me holding a Japanese tea events in Europe this time? Learning about the current state of Japanese tea culture in various parts of Europe through the tea events and also increasing my future options as a Japanese tea brewer. Moreover, exploring what should be conveyed to people who travel from Europe to Japan and drink Japanese tea.

Among these, my strongest motivation is to make friends all over the world to hold tea parties with me. My dream is to travel around the world to celebrate the healthy growth of children and hold tea parties where parents and children can enjoy a tea time together.

I hope that this tea journey will lead to cultural learning. Please make tea for someone you care about. I think that is more important than drinking tea. I want to have a wonderful tea time with friends who value the same things.

My motto is: “Tea to Trust”. 

Tea leads to trust. That is what I believe.


* Text and photos by Asahi Fukuda. To follow his tea adventures, follow him on instagram. You might even meet him for tea somewhere in the future.

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