Thursday, November 22, 2018

A tea trick, a true story and my gratitude

I've been looking forward writing this article for quite some time. But before I start with the gratitude part, let me share a little brewing trick with an Yixing teapot. Finding the right brewing time can be tricky. There are several methods that one can use.
1. Habit. Using the roughly same amount of tea for each session, you brew roughly the same amount of time, because you were satisfied with the results in the past.
2. Lots of leaves and short brewing times. If you're using lots of tea leaves, the question of how long to brew answers itself: short. Because otherwise you'll get a brew that is too strong. It's only when you feel that the tea weakens that you'll increase your brewing time.
 3. Observing the water level at the mouth of the spout. I've used this method today for a little amount of raw wild puerh leaves from Yiwu (spring 2003). After a while, when you've filled the teapot to the top, there comes a moment when the water level suddenly drops. That's when the dry leaves absorb some of the hot water and release their flavors in return. This is a sign that the tea is ready to pour!
In 1993, 25 years ago, I spent Thanksgiving as guest in an American family near the small college town of Indiana in Pennsylvania (near Pittsburgh). The reason for their invitation is an amazing coincidence. While I was studying in the US, their daughter was studying in France, in Alsace. Her university or her church had arranged for American students to spend a day with a local family and she ended up meeting my parents! Imagine her surprise when she found out that her hosts had their son studying in the very same town were she came from! So, she contacted her parents and that's how I got invited to share their most precious family meal of the year.
 In 1993, one of my most common meal during my studies at Indiana University of Pennsylvania was a self made turkey sandwich. But that Thanksgiving, I had the opportunity to eat a real chunk of the beast with mashed potatoes and cranberry gravy... And I felt at home with this family I had never seen before! I hope they felt it, too!
This Thanksgiving 2018, I feel it's more and more important to express my gratitude to you and to the world for the many blessings in my life and in the world. Living in Taiwan, away from my parents and my family, I am glad that they live in very good health (drinking my teas every day!) I'm also thankful for a meaningful life teaching, inspiring, writing, photographing Chinese tea culture. And I thank you, my readers and customers, for the growing success of my tea-masters eBoutique.
And I want to thank you with a big BLACK FRIDAY SALE on lots of teas, teapots and Chabu!
I also give my 3 eBooks away for FREE if you order:
- more than 60 USD and you get the TeaMasters guide to brewing Oolong tea,
- more than 100 USD and you also get TeaMastersBlog at the British Museum and free airmail shipping,
- more than 200 USD and you also get the utlimate tea ware collection of Chinese emperors and free EMS shipping
See how few puerh leaves I use!
 The nicest gift is tea, of course! That's why I also give you a free sample of spring 2017 Jinxuan Oolong from Alishan if your order exceeds 60 USD. And I upgrade this gift to the spring 2017 Qingxin Oolong from Tsui Feng (Lishan) if your order exceeds 200 USD.

And you also receive at least 1 of my exclusive tea post cards when you make a physical order!
Happy Thanksgiving 2018!


EG said...

Hi Stéphane,
Much appreciation back to you!
Thank you for the tea pleasure and knowledge that you share so freely!
Happy Thanksgiving!

TeaMasters said...

Thank you Elisabeth!