Thursday, November 24, 2005

Tea excellence and gongfu cha skills

The other day, Teaparker, my tea master, told us how he traveled with a friend to China to buy tea. They met a tea merchant and Teaparker helped him identify a good tea, thanks to his nose and experience. To be 100% sure, they did what you always do when buying a bigger quantity: they also brewed a pot (or gaiwan) with a small sample of the tea. But instead of letting the merchant do this, the friend asked Teaparker to brew the tea. He brewed it perfectly. The tea was indeed delicious. The merchant himself had no idea his tea could taste so good! This had an uninteded consequence, though: the merchant refused to grant any discount on the price of the tea (which is very unusual when you buy in bulk), because Teaparker's gongfu had revealed to him the true quality of the leaves. The friend was almost angry with Teaparker and told him: "Next time, brew the tea (bad) so that I can buy it cheaper!"

This example shows the importance of proper brewing to enjoy good tea. So, I may have been too impatient in my impulse of sharing 2 excellent teas with a few of you. It seems not all of you have tasted and enjoyed them as such. Without proper knowledge and pratice of gongfu cha, you may have brewed these 2 teas like the merchant and not realize how good they are. That's why I have written a series of 6 gongfu lessons in my blog. They are the first 6 links on this page.

I hope you'll find them useful and wish you a nice journey on the Cha Dao!

1 comment:

Sergey said...

I know this comment is late, but I just have to say that I really enjoyed this story! It even sounds like a Chinese parable with a Zen moral attached, though I've never been really good at fishing them out.