September 2021





Mugi-cha (barley tea), with its fragrant and refreshing taste, is probably the most popular summer drink in Japan.

Barley was introduced to Japan around the end of the Jomon period and the beginning of the Yayoi period. It is said that it was during the Heian period when the "parched-barley flour" appeared on the scene that barley came to be roasted and drunk as we know it today.

It became popular before green tea and was also enjoyed by warlords, which was commercialized as a casual drink for the general public by the end of the Edo period. "Barley tea stores," similar to today's coffee shops, appeared all over the city, becoming places of relaxation for the townspeople.

Barley tea, which gives a pleasant cool feeling in the hot summer, is a healthful drink. Pyrazine, an aromatic ingredient produced during the roasting process, thins the blood and improves blood flow, and barley tea containing pyrazine helps to replenish the water lost in the heat, making it the perfect drink to prevent summer fatigue.

Furthermore, unlike green tea, which is also a popular summer drink, barley tea does not contain caffeine or tannin, the ingredients that give it its bitter and astringent taste. Barley tea is also rich in minerals, which are known to be essential for maintaining the body's normal function, and for these reasons, it is a well-known natural beverage that can be drunk safely by pregnant women and children as well.

We have a variety of items that can be used to serve cold barley tea, so please check out our online page.

Okuhara Glass's Pelican Pitcher
Okuhara Glass's Kop
Okinawa Mingu's Getto Coaster




Kintsugi is a traditional Japanese technique of repairing broken vessels using sap from lacquer trees. Lacquer has a very strong hardening effect when it dries. In Japan, its properties have been used to glue vessels since the Jomon period, 9000 years ago.

At the closing ceremony of the recent Paralympic Games, Andrew Parsons, President of the International Paralympic Committee, introduced kintsugi as being in line with the philosophy of the Paralympic Games, saying, "The idea is to accept everyone's imperfections and cherish them rather than hide them."

The kintsugi process involves seven steps, depending on the object, and can take six months or more to complete because the lacquer takes several days to dry before moving on to the next step.

When we fix something, we think about the people who have used it, and the people who will use it in the future, and we think about what kind of atmosphere the finish should give to the object, whether the form should be plump, flat, or dug down, whether the appearance should be smooth or uneven, how thick should the lines be? What color? What is the size of the gold particles? How big are the gold particles? It is such a fun time. When it is finished, we feel as if the vessel has thanked us.

By restoring things that are broken but cannot be thrown away, we can look at the flaws as we use them and remember the events and people who made them, and continue to cherish them.

For the Touch Classic's Wind Bell we repaired this time, the black tamamushi-nuri coating on the glass looked like a deep blue, so we gave it a galaxy-like texture and sprinkled silver powder on it.

Enjoying and taking care of things, and before you know it, you will be living an environmentally friendly life. It would be nice if what the Japanese used to do as a matter of course would spread more.

Touch Classic's Wind Bell 






[Looking for New Ways to Eat Natto]

Natto is one of the national dishes of the Japanese people, but it is interesting to note that different people eat it in different ways. You can add green onions, use eggs, kimchi, chopped shiso leaves...

We think there are a number of patterns, but we were very surprised to find that the natto arrangement of our acquaintance from Tohoku region was something we had never heard of. It is a way of eating natto with sugar.

The fermentation of natto is difficult in Hokkaido and the Tohoku region, where the weather is very cold, because the growth of bacteria becomes active when the temperature exceeds 20 degrees Celsius, and the strings of natto become less elastic. It seems that one of the reasons for adding sugar was to compensate for such a situation.

We tried it at home and found that adding sugar made the yarn fluffier and firmer than usual. The taste is also slightly sweet and addictive. Why not change your usual toppings and try sugar and natto?

Natto Bowl and Sobachoko are just the right size for mixing natto and toppings. Try to make your own natto recipe with various vegetables and seasonings.

Seiryugama's Sobachoko
Sasayaka's Never Never Pack