"I sit alone, deep in the mountains:
Worldly affairs are of no import.
Gate closed, I pass the days
in learning emptiness.
I examine my life.
I have no material goods,
just a bowl of fresh tea and a book of scriptures."

The Ven. Sonsu (1543-1614)


South Korea has a long tea history and rich tea culture. It is considered that the first tea planting started about 1200+ years ago when Buddhist monks brought Camellia Sinensis seeds from China and started tea growing in South Jeolla Province. Local Buddhist temples became the birthplace of Korean tea culture and tea became a very important part of everyday Buddhist practices. During the Goryeo and Joseon Dynasties tea culture evolved and became an important part of royal ceremonies and cultural phenomena reflected in human culture, literature, and poetry. During this time Korean tea ceremony developed into a unique and beautiful performance and turned into a very important event during celebrations and receiving important guests. Korean tea is different and requires a different attitude during the tea brewing process which is reflected in the Traditional Korean Tea Ceremony called Darye.


Korean green tea, which is the mainly produced tea in South Korea, is divided into four quality grades according to the harvesting period. This tea is made only once a year and mainly by handmade processing which makes this tea very limited and rare.

WOOJEON - "Pre Rain" - This is the highest-quality green tea, made from first spring young buds and leaves harvested before Gogu “Grain Rain,” (the period of the first warm spring rains), which usually falls on April 20. This grade of tea is the most tender, sweet, and very limited due to its short harvesting period.

SEJAK - "Thin Sparrow Tongue" - This is the second highest-quality green tea harvested after the Gogu period and before early May's Ipha "Threshold of Summer" (the beginning of summer in traditional East Asian Culture), which usually falls on May 5th. This tea is considered a high-quality green tea and has a delicate floral, vegetal, umami profile that Korean tea is famous for.

JUNGJAK - "Medium Sparrow Tongue" - This is the third harvest of the year, and takes place on Soman "Day of Steady Growth", which usually falls on May 20th. Less quality, but still quite nice, tea leaves are used to create a green tea with a more intense flavour.

DAEJAK - "Sparrow Beak" - The last green tea harvest of the year, takes place on Haji ("Summer solstice" - ), which usually falls on June 21st. Made from mature tea leaves, this tea has a vegetal, nutty profile and a more intense flavour.

There are also HWANGCHA "Yellow tea", BALHYEOCHA "Wulong tea", HONGCHA "Red tea" and TTEOKCHA "Cake tea" (Post-fermented tea), made in South Korea in much fewer quantities which makes this tea even rarer.


Tea production in South Korea is concentrated in the South of the country in the Boseong and Hadong regions as well as on Jeju Island. With limited quantity, organic raw material, and almost fully handmade production, this tea is unique and rare.

BOSEONG - Jeollanam province - This place is famous for its small family tea productions and exceptional quality of green tea.

HADONG - Gyeongsang province - Famous for its wild tea grown in the mountains. Thanks to a clean environment, good soil, and the way people relate to tea this place is kind of a mecca for tea in South Korea.

JEJU ISLAND - Due to its volcanic soil, humid and windy climate, and industrial approach, this tea is the most famous in the country.