Author: Hong Li
Publishing house: China Intercontinental Press
Edition: 1 (Jan. 2010)
The purpose of learning the art of brewing tea is not to master the exact steps and actions of a professional teahouse server. Drinking tea is synonymous to relaxation. Focusing on the minutiae instead of enjoying the process would be wasting quality tea and time.
The principle behind the art of brewing tea is to master the basic technique and to understand the characteristics of the three intrinsic components of brewing tea: tea leaves, water and the tea set. Through this, one would learn the best possible method of brewing to maximize the fragrance of the tea. Brewing tea is an art. Each minute detail unfolds the brewer’s personality. Every step should be gracious and polished.
Why is tea the National drink of China? Why is tea regarded as symbolizing the harmony and mysterious unity of the Universe? Why is the loose-leaf Chinese tea more beneficial than the tea bags? How many types of Chinese tea are Available? How to make the best cup of Chinese tea? ……A visitor to the home of tea has so many questions. Understanding their answers will bring you closer to the history and mystery of tea. Appreciating Chinese Tea Series will help you.
Part 1 The Art ls in the Details
Column 1: The Tea Family
Part 2 Brewing Tea with Ease
Column 2: Water
Column 3: Tea Wares
Column 4: Enjoying Tea in the Countryside
Column 5: The Stroy of Pu-erh
Column 6: Tea in the Kitchen
Column 7: Finding a Home for Tea
Column 8: Floral and Herbal Tea
Part3 Origins of Tea
Brewing and Enjoying Tea in the Countryside
The green hills, streams, a lone boat, passing clouds, spiraling smoke in the distance, the setting sun and the fragrance of tea—what more can you ask for? The tranquility of the painting Drinking Tea with Master Yuan at Qingshan Lake by Reverent Lingyi of the Tang Dynasty is most sought after by all tea lovers.
For the modern city dweller, it is not diffi cult to plan an excursion with friends to the countryside to drink tea. Wake up early on a sunny day. Pack a tea set, fi nd a scenic spot and begin brewing tea. Catch up with your friends amid the calming backdrop of lakes and mountains. The perfect way to escape life occasionally!
❍ Pay attention to the weather forecast and pick a sunny day. Check to make sure that it is not too windy.
❍ Pick a familiar route to avoid spending time on the road.
❍ Pick a place with a convenient water source, preferably near a spring or well. The water should be clean and of good quality. If the area does not have any water source, take your own container of purifi ed or mineral water.
❍ Find a safe place to light a fi re. Flat stony areas by the waterside are the best. Carry fuel such charcoal or alcohol to light the fi re. Pick fi rewood or dried branches for added fuel. If you are at a place where lighting fi res are not allowed, you have two options. Boil water at home and bring it along in a thermos, or fi nd a small shop nearby and ask for heated water.
❍ The countryside is usually colder than the city. The wind is usually stronger too. Remember to dress accordingly.
❍ Wear fl at shoes and comfortable clothes. If it is very sunny, remember to carry your sun block, sunglasses and hats.
Things to carry:
Fuel for boiling water: Charcoal, firewood, solid or liquid alcohol.
Water containers: Water ladle and water containers.
Tea set: Tea tray, teapot, fairness cup, tea appreciation cup and saucer, basin, tea towel, kettle and tea jar (with tea leaves).
Other equipment: Lighter or matches, trash bags, rugs, cushions, wet tissues, dry tissues, paper cups, towels, cameras, etc.