A couple weeks ago my mom came up from SoCal for a short two day visit. We took the chance to check out an exhibit at the de Young Museum on resist dye textiles. After the exhibit we headed over to the Japanese Tea Garden which is right next door.
The Japanese Tea Garden was originally built as the Japanese Village for the 1894 California Midwinter International Exposition by Makoto Hagiwara. He designed the bulk of the garden and was the caretaker from 1894 until the anti-Japanese hysteria during World War II.
Here are a few photos (phone camera) from the garden:
This little pagoda and wishing rock are in a nice shady path that made for a nice break from the warm afternoon.
There were Koi hiding in the shadows of the little bridges that connect this pool and several others that run through the garden.
This bridge was VERY popular with the kids visiting the garden, this was one of the few moments it was not being climbed on. The little guy in the corner of the frame was very determined to get his chance at a climb no matter what Mom had to say about it.
There is a small gift shop in the gardens that offer nice tea and sake sets, origami paper and other souvenirs. This little beggar comes regularly into the shop and gets walnuts from the ladies behind the counter. He climbs right up their pant legs to take the walnuts from there hands, then he runs over to this isle to eat it and then go back for more. I caught him mid snack.
After watching the squirrel get his snack we realized if we were going to survive the Muni-BART trip home we needed some sustenance ourselves. We headed to the Tea House where they serve several kinds of green tea along with traditional Japanese sweets. I got the Jasmine Green Tea set with salty crackers and an separate Hawaiian Coconut Mochi Cake. Normally I am not a big coconut fan but the mochi had just enough coconut flavor to be yummy and not over whelming.
If you are in the Bay Area and haven’t had a chance to check out the Japanese Tea Garden I highly suggest going and having some tea and mochi. Of course the best part of the day was getting to hang out with my Mom.