Tea Ceremony Manners

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Tea Ceremony Manners

Tea Ceremony Manners

There are a lot of rules and manners. In this article, we'll discuss some basic manners when drinking tea.

Teishu (Host)

The host who makes the tea for the tea ceremony.

Hantou (Assistant)

The assistant helps the host during the tea ceremony.

Tea drinking manners

How one sits will vary by ceremony style, but sit with your knees tucked.

1 When the host is making the tea, wait quietly and watch.
2 When the host holds the tea, the assistant will put the cha wan (bowl) on the outer edge of the tatami mat.
3 When the assistant bows, it means to drink, and the guests put their hands on the tatami and bow to return respect.
4 When the assistant moves, put the cha wan in front of you and bow to the guests sitting next to you. In some styles, they verbally say this as well. When greeting other guests, hold the cha wan with both hands and then put it back.
5 After returning the cha wan to its proper place, put both hands down and bow to the host. Depending on the place, there may be something said verbally, too.
6 Put your left hand on the bottom and right hand on the side and lift the cha wan, giving a slight bow. Avoid drinking directly from the front of the cha wan and turn it to the right.
7 Drink it within 2½ to 3 mouthfuls. Depending on the place, guests may bow after every mouthful.
8 After drinking, keep your left hand on the cha wan and use your right thumb and index finger to wipe your mouth and wipe your fingers with the kaishi (paper).
9 Turn the cha wan so it faces the assistant and put it so it's outside the tatami mat's line. Wait quietly until the assistant comes to take it.
10 The assistant bows to signify he's leaving and the customers should put both hands on the tatami and bow to acknowledge.