The Japanese tea ceremony (known as sadō/chadō (茶道, "The Way of Tea") or chanoyu (茶の湯)) is a Japanese cultural activity involving the ceremonial preparation and presentation of matcha (抹茶), powdered green tea, the procedure of which is called temae (点前).[1] While in the West it is known as "tea ceremony", it is seldom ceremonial in practice. Most often tea is served to family, friends, and associates; religious and ceremonial connotations are overstated in western spaces. [2][3][4]

Zen Buddhism was a primary influence in the development of the culture of Japanese tea. Much less commonly, Japanese tea practice uses leaf tea, primarily sencha, a practice known as senchadō (煎茶道, "the way of sencha").

Tea gatherings are classified as either an informal tea gathering (chakai (茶会, "tea gathering")) or a formal tea gathering (chaji (茶事, "tea event")). A chakai is a relatively simple course of hospitality that includes confections, thin tea, and perhaps a light meal. A chaji is a much more formal gathering, usually including a full-course kaiseki meal followed by confections, thick tea, and thin tea. A chaji may last up to four hours.