July 10, 2011

中国茶芸苑 馥

The Chinese teahouse "Fuku" on the first floor of the Japan-China Friendship Center in Korakuen, right next to Koishikawa Korakuen Garden. The 12-floor building houses offices for Japanese companies, but is also the headquarters for the Friendship Center. The building next door is a dorm for students from China. The Friendship Center celebrated its 25th anniversary just yesterday.
The cafe is in its seventh year. It's first-floor location and affordable lunches probably means a large portion of the clientele is office workers.

In a way, it's a shame. The tearoom is beautifully decorated, and boasts an extensive variety of teas. You could easily spend a quiet hour drinking your tea, but the lunch crowd is more likely to be the "get in, get out" type.

The cash register, with individual rooms to the left.

An individual room, decorated with embroidered window covers.

The collection of tea leaves, with the kitchen in the background.

The chair and tables have an inlaid shell pattern. No strainers for this tea -- you place the lid on a tilted angle so you don't drink in the tea leaves.

Seen from the lobby of the building.

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