Wednesday, July 25, 2018

Brewing in sunlight

2017 spring high mountain Oolong from Fushou shan
In my previous article, I was exploring the interplay of light and shadows using a black Chabu. Here, I'm trying the opposite approach: a big white Chabu for my afternoon sunshing Chaxi!

The shadows are long, because the sun is nearing its sunset in the city.

The blue sky and strong light gives a beach feeling. It feels pure and weightless. That's also how the tea tastes, sweet, refreshing, almost sparkling and pure!
The handpicked leaves are thick and full of flavors. The brew is slightly post oxidized because the tea is 1 year old and hasn't been kept vacuum sealed. When this happens with a lower quality mountain Oolong, it's a catastrophe, because all it had going for it was its freshness. But with this FuShou shan Oolong, it's OK, because there is still freshness beyond freshness! Yes, the freshest scents have disappeared, but the freshness of the taste, the lightness and purity are still there! If the tea has been well kept (and this one was), then the slight aging/postoxidation will add some sweetness and depth. Few brewers are getting to enjoy these aromas these days, because most high mountain Oolongs in Taiwan are processed too green...
Speaking of light and Chinese culture, let me share these pictures from the imperial citadel in Hué, in central Vietnam. This palace of Vietnam's kings was inspired by the forbidden city in Beijing and shows the influence of Chinese culture in Vietnam's history.
Vietnamese cities are playing catch-up with the Western world and are rapidly adding modern high rises. Hué is one of the few places where the past is well preserved.
Long life!
A lack of restoration and fading colors adds melancholy to this door.
Is this tame garden a sign of France's past influence?
Vietnam and China in one same place: double happiness.

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