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Joe Morgenstern Tour

16,Feb 2015 Events & Tour

It had been a longtime dream for Joe, a film critic for the Wall Street Journal, to come to Japan. He came to the countryside for an authentic Japanese experience and personal interactions with local artisans.

Visited Mr. Kaoru Miyazaki, a potter living in Nishiawakura Village. Mr Miyazaki sources local clay with high iron content which appears as spots giving his creations a unique trademark. He also uses local thinned needle-leaf wood for firing instead of the standard pinewood making the firing process more environmentally friendly.

Joe with Mr Miyazaki


Mr. Hirokiyo Ando, a sword maker, is a designated “Prefectural important intangible cultural property”. He is never without a smile and always happy to answer questions. Mr. Ando has been pursuing for the last 35 years to find and revive the techniques used back in the 13th century to create the highest quality swords.

Joe with Mr. Hirokiyo Ando


Mr. Keiichiro Shimoyama is a 3rd generation tea master who has worked hard to breathe life back into Japanese tea culture in the Okayama region. After he took us through each stage of tea processing, Mr. Shimoyama invited Joe to write his own tea packaging with a calligraphy pen. Can you read what he wrote? Joe gave the tea “5 stars”!!

Joe Morgenstern with Shimoyama sanMr Shimoyama with his daughter


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