Valentine's Afternoon Tea
TGT Press Release
New Menu Item
Toraya Yokan Now Avaliable at TGT
"Fannings" and "Dusts"
TGT Book Review "The Book of Tea"
January 2012
Volume 3, Issue 1

Welcome to the first issue of 2012, the Year of the Dragon.

              Lake Forest, Illinois                                                                              Beverly Hills, California






The Finest Green Teas and Sweets of Japan


Lake Forest, Illinois and Beverly Hills, California - January 18, 2012


The Green Teaist, LLC ("TGT") and the Toraya Confectionery Co., Ltd. have entered into a collaborative agreement to provide TGT's U.S. customers with the finest traditional sweets of Japan, Toraya Yokan. Toraya, with a tradition spanning almost five centuries, produces the finest and purest yokans, a sweet bean jelly made from azuki (red beans), sugar, kanten (agar agar) and natural flavorings. It has been a purveyor to the Imperial Household of Japan for the same period of time.


With its elegant and delicate flavors, including whole azuki, dark brown sugar, honey, black tea and others, Toraya Yokan is the perfect accompaniment to TGT's freshest and purest green teas from the Kyoto area, the traditional home of the finest green teas of Japan. TGT, with its Green Tea Salons and Shops in Lake Forest and Beverly Hills is now serving Toraya Yokan and Green Tea Sets. Toraya Yokan may also be purchased in gift sets or in individual flavors and sizes at the same locations.


For further information, please contact Shirlee Englese at the corporate office: 847-234-2175; fax 847-234-6050; and  







New Menu Item at The Green Teaist
"Toraya Yokan" 






Toraya Yokan Delicacies Now Available at The Green Teaist

Toraya Yokan displayed at L'Atelier and Tea Cellar at TGT Lake Forest, Illinois  

TGT Harayama Sencha and Toraya Omokage and Yoru-no-Ume Yokan Gift Set

Featuring extra premium Harayama Sencha from Kyoto and the two most traditional Toraya Yokans: Omokage (dark brown sugar, with molasses notes) and Yoru-no-Ume (with whole azuki beans).                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     $95.00




TGT Green Tea Collection and  

Toraya Petite Yokan Gift Set




Featuring ten different green teas in biodegradable sachets with five petite Toraya Yokans - one piece of Omokage (dark brown sugar, with molasses notes) and two pieces each of Yoru-no-Ume (with whole azuki beans), Hachimitsu (honey) and Kocha (black tea).                                                     $45.00





History of Toraya (Click For Readable Version) 





"Fannings" and "Dusts"


What kind of tea goes into tea bags and sachets? 

"Fannings are small pieces of tea that are left over after higher grades are gathered to be sold. Fannings with extremely small particles are sometimes called dusts. Fannings and dusts are considered the lowest grades of tea, separated from broken-leaf teas which have larger pieces of the leaves. However, the fannings of expensive teas can still be more expensive and more flavorful than whole leaves of cheaper teas.

Because of the small size of the particles, a tea infuser is typically used to brew fannings. Fannings are also typically used in most tea bags, although some companies sell tea bags containing whole-leaf tea. Some exporters focus primarily on broken leaf teas, fannings and dusts."  - Wikipedia

TGT uses whole-leaf tea, cut to fit our tea sachets without compromising flavor and utilizing the convenience of our biodegradable tea sachets. The Green Teaist prides itself on supplying the freshest, most flavorful green teas of Kyoto for our valued customers.


The Green Teaist Book Store 

Book Review 


(The Green Teaist offers the most extensive collection of books on teas around the world, their history, provenance, practices and customs, with emphasis on the green teas of Japan. You may wish to browse the more than 30 titles at TGT Lake Forest and a more limited collection at TGT Beverly Hills. We review each book in our expanding collection and, perhaps, interest you in increasing your understanding of teas.)



The Book of Tea, Kakuzo Okakura, 99 pp, Dover Publications: 2010


The Dover Publications edition of The Book of Tea by Kakuzo Okura is one of the more recent editions of this famous work, still in print after its first publication in 1906, several of which have been reviewed previously in the TGT Newsletter.  


This edition of The Book of Tea is of particular interest as it contains an extensive foreword by Everett F. Bleiler, a noted science fiction author and an editor at Dover for many years. His introduction to The Book of Tea is, perhaps, the most trenchant of any other commentators on Okakura who sought to introduce the culture and aesthetics of Japan to a western audience through the practice and symbolism of the Tea Ceremony or "The Way of Tea." In spite of the overwhelmingly critical acclaim with which The Book of Tea was received when first published, and still commands, Bleiler, while acknowledging the genius of Okakura and The Book of Tea, believed that, to some extent, Okakura was overly captivated by his belief in "imitation for the sake of antiquity," creating cultural and aesthetic conflicts between east and west.  


Bleiler's description of the finer details of the Tea Ceremony is curiously inaccurate and indicates a lack of rudimentary knowledge of or experience with The Way of Tea. He does not accept Okakura's conclusion that "It is in the Japanese tea-ceremony that we see the culmination of tea-ideals." Such "tea-ideals" translating  to the goal of perfection in which no detail is left to chance or disregarded as being too small to be of any consequence. To the western mind, although differently nuanced, it is the recognition that "the devil is in the details." He does credit Okakura's book as having been a major contributor to the West's understanding of Asia, as Okakura gives due recognition to the artistic and cultural legacy given to Japan by China and India, two of the "antiquities." Or, as in Okakura's words acknowledging Japan's cultural indebtedness to China, "Teaism was Taoism in disguise."


The Book of Tea, itself, is handsomely presented in this bound hardcover edition and is a welcome addition to the Okakura legend. The Green Teaist stocks and retails the other editions of The Book of Tea. Each of them has its respective introductory comments about Okakura, leading to a better understanding of the man and his times, not just in the context of America and Japan at the turn of the twentieth century, but, also in his interactions with the Boston Brahmins of that era.  


Okakura's dynamic personality and scholarship led to his appointments as principal curator and adviser  of Asian art, including Japan, India, China and Korea at the Boston Museum of Fine Arts and the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, two of the most esteemed museums in America with world-class Asian art collections, thanks in large part to Okakura.  




The Book of Tea, Kakuzo Okakura, Tuttle Publishing, 1956     

The Book of Tea, Kakuzo Okakura, Kodansha International, 1989

The Book of Tea, Kakuzo Okakura, Shambhala Publications, 2001                                                  










The Green Teaist / 647 Bank Lane / Lake Forest, Illinois 60045 /