Gong fu tea: Taiwanese Tea Ceremony

Very often my guests from other countries like to ask me, "do you always drink tea like this", when I serve them tea with tiny tea pots, tiny tea cups and tea leaves. To them, it looks like very time consuming, and too much effort to go through just to have tea.

Yes, I always make tea with those tiny pots and cups, especially when I want to slow down and get my mind together.

Making good tea Chinese style does not only need only pots and cups and tea leaves, but also concentrating and sensitivity to tea. The tea leaves can't stay in the pot while we walk away to be busy with something else. We pay attention to the temperature of water, the amount of tea, different kinds of tea, the colors that the tea turns out, the fragrance or aroma of the tea, the strength of the tea over time. If I am making tea for others, I also pay attention to see if the tea fragrance and strength will suit my guests.

small teapot, jug, strainer and cups for making oolong teaYou might think that this is already too much work to make Chinese tea. But if you spend some time to learn about your tea, concentrating on making tea, all those will gradually become part of your tea making skill. As making good tea requires you to let go of your work and tension, concentating on the tea and forgetting your worries, the experience of making tea is a kind of meditation. Good tea is good for your body, and brings your soul and mind together.

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Excellent post. Many make fun

Excellent post. Many make fun of me when they see me take a moment to smell the tea or watch the steam leave the teacup. That is the part of the meditation of tea that they can't understand. Measuring the correct amount of leaves, timing it just perfectly, having the correct water temperature, etc. all DO start to come naturally if you brew tea this way often.

Thank you! I've been making

Thank you! I've been making tea this way twice a day, for thirty years. I really enjoy it, each tea has its own character - they are becoming my old friends. And drinking tea like this is a way of being with myself. This self requires me to treat it with a good pot of tea.

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