Spring, meaning the cherry blossom season, has finally reached Japan in full bloom and the country is blanket in white and pink flowers. Weather or not is chilly, people drag outside to have a picnic under the cherry trees. It is also the season for salted cherry blossoms that make fantastic Sakura Gohan (rice mixed with cherry blossoms) – perfect to take on a picnic. But there is more to salted cherry blossoms than Sakura Gohan. They can also – and in face are during wedding ceremonies – served as Sakura Yu (a broth-like ‘tea’). Why is that? It is believed that green tea encourages gossip. And with each liaison there are many opinions about it out there. But on the day of the wedding ceremony it is expected that everybody keeps silent about personal opinions on the couple and to emphasize this, Sakura Yu is served instead of green tea.
So if you are invited to a wedding try to get your hands on a bag of salted cherry blossoms. They make a cute little gift.