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The ability of Tea and The Way of Tea leaf

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Mention the words Chinese tea leaf culture, and the first photographs that surface are probably those of a tea ceremony along with the method of brewing tea, often called gongfu brewing. Not inexact but hardly representative of the full spectrum that Chinese tea leaf culture entails. Select the Best bubble tea party.

Unfortunately, China’s tea culture has been identified with Chiayi (the Fine art of Tea) instead of Chadao (the Way of Tea). Thus, this beloved beverage, in addition to a way of life, has often been recently portrayed as a mystical, retiré ceremony that requires years of loyal training and the purest connection with hearts before one can continue to unravel the mysteries.

If so, then tea leaf would have been reserved for less than 1% of China’s (admittedly sizable) population, not a massive sight across the country spanning all walks of life. Contrary to what many may believe, not all of China is proficient in brewing gongfu tea or even drinking Tea leaves. Even though we are at it- China does not wear traditional silk costumes every day, although I digress.

Chinese teas culture is more than ceremonies and also performances. It can be as simple as throwing some leaves inside a tall glass. It can be holding a vacuum flask or stemless glass full of brewed Tea and sipping from it all day long. It can be the famous Beijing big pan tea (Da Wan Cha), Taiwanese’ bubble tea’, or Hong Kong’s ‘yum cha’ culture.

It would be illegal to assume Chinese teas culture begins and ends with the gongfu style or maybe the ceremony that is more efficient than exacting the perfect taste from the leaves. Do not get me wrong, there is a spot for it- there are several things more inherently comforting than attending a teas performance, but that is scarcely representative of the full spectrum.

Regarding Tea, to be considered any culture- it would have to be embedded in the daily lives of the masses. Like British teas, culture entails afternoon green teas, which has embedded itself into a daily routine- the Chinese lifestyle has daily affairs elements. Being an everyday matter would exclude ceremonies, except if the subject matter in question is that line of work.

For example, in Chinese culture, teas are universally served in restaurants, virtually by default. After I was in China, I asked about plain water (after a full day in the tea industry, I was sure I would not be able to consume any more caffeinated drinks without a bout of insomnia). I was greeted using a look of disbelief. I had developed to repeat myself and endure those piercing looks before I eventually received my message.

But teas served in eating places are brewed in a ceramic or metal pot, not a Yixing weed with an elaborate show just before being served. These might be a notch (or ten) under the teas served in the ceremony, but they are undeniably as much a component of Chinese tea culture as being a more illustrious counterpart.

A different standard simple method of drinking directly beyond tall glasses with the actual leaves thrown in. This is particularly favored for green Tea that is undoubtedly the most commonly consumed enter in China. There are variations plus much more details, but generally, the solution is this:

  • Warm the glass often.
  • Add leaves.
  • Bring hot water.
  • When the water level falls, let the leaves vertically to help 1/3 fill again.
  • Repeat another time.

But not only is this convenient, but it will also allow the drinker to watch leaves actually unfurl and often admire the improvisation of the leaves. Most importantly, it requires glass and hot water instead of the whole kitchen sink, which is usually practiced in the workplace without taking on the boss’s wrath.

Many connoisseurs disdain this method connected with brewing, saying that it isn’t going quite to unleash the total quality of Tea. Still, I think the convenience it may result in outweighs the loss in quality.

Tea culture is about enjoying Tea in a manner that best suits the occasion. Whether at the dinner table or in the office, away from home, or hosting friends at home- these are all the same amount of a part of tea culture seeing ceremonies and performances. At its very core, the tea lifestyle is about consuming it, incorporating that into part of our lives- not a sporadic indulgence. This is correct for the Chinese nationals and may be true for individuals.

Let Chinese (or Japoneses or Korean) tea celebrations intrigue us but not bully us, be enchanting although not elusive- tea culture may be simple, enjoyable, and a regular affair.

Derek Chew possesses and operates Peony Teas Solutions- A Quality Brand of Moriah Pte Ltd.

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