I have a received a new Cha Bu from my mother. This one is made entirely with fabric she purchased in Taiwan (some are imports from Japan). This explains the strong Asian feeling of this quilt, even though she has sewn it in Europe. The lighter squares all carry a brown touch that add an old character. Each square uses a different fabric from the other, and yet, they all fit together thanks to a good choice and how they are placed. This 45 degrees turned square is a variation of the square in square pattern.
I had wanted a blue Cha Bu to fit qinghua teaware. The dark color is also practical insofar as tea stains are not as apparent on it. The deeper meaning I see in this quilt is that our modern teas be rooted in Asian and especially Chinese traditions, but that we bring our own variation, sensibilities to it!
A big thanks for my mother for having sensed all this and created this fine quilt for me!
For the first Cha Xi on it, I chose a Hung Shui Oolong from Shan Lin Shi. Here also, this tea embodies the modern innovation of Taiwan's High Mountain Oolongs, but combined with the traditional charcoal roast that can be traced back several century ago in the mountains of Wu Yi. I'm combining old qinghua plates, a modern qinghua jar replica (using traditional techniques) and David Louveau's cups with stand (which are inspired by Yuan dynasty cups).
My name is Stéphane Erler. I live in Taiwan since 1996 and have been studying tea with Teaparker. He's a worldwide tea expert and author of over 30 tea books. The study of tea isn't just theoretical, but it's also rooted in daily practice. It's a path of continuous improvement. As my brewing technique improves I get access to better teas and better accessories. These things go hand in hand. My blog documents my learning since 2004. And I have set up an online tea boutique with my selection of top quality teas, accessories and tea culture.