Monko – Listening to the Incense
Monko, literally translating as “listening to the incense,” can best be described as an incense-smelling party; a ritual that holds centuries of legacy in Kyoto. A favorite pastime of nobles from Imperial times and before, it was the perfect excuse for a social gathering amongst acquaintances during which an assemblage of precious fragrant woods would be passed around, allowing each guest to guess the various scents as a form of entertainment. Not only was it an engaging way to enjoy Japanese precious incenses, but also a fun one to showcase individuals’ olfactory prowess!
Monko remains a popular activity today and an easy introduction awaits with the Sanshuko experience held at an incense shop. During your session, three incense burners will be used, enabling a discovery of the rich smells of some of the more notorious precious woods such as aloeswood and Kyara.
Also, not to be missed, are the nioi bukuro, or scented sachets that have long been used as personal fragrances and playing a distinct role at temples. Custom create your own, or take home ones expertly prepared by the house’s masters – all of which have played a role in the fragrant history of Japan!
Duration: 1 hour
Booking: Please contact the concierge for more information.