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Light drinking of tea

Mrs Jacky made a replica of the calligraphy “Reply to Mr Liu Ya Zi” and persuaded Mr Jacky “You are born in same stems as the media, it’s no need for you to fight back to media who return your kindness with hatred. The relationship is just a cup of tea, there is not much old feeling inside there.” When everything had goes past, just like the tea became cold.

The photography on the left shows Jacky’s daughter who is a lawyer where taken in a teahouse. She wrote an ancient poem “Smile placidly” for Jacky as a comfort: “I have no regret in ‘sewing somebody else’s trousseau’, as I could treat it placidly with a smile by take a sip of the tea”. The poem was to praise her father for take things calmly. 

Compose poem

Note:

The poem “Smile placidly” was made by his daughter in 2014 because Jacky had experienced an event of “character assassination” like the Wuxia story plot. 

But he was at ease because his wife had advised him “You are born in same stems as the media, it’s no need for you to fight back to media who return your kindness with hatred.”

His daughter made a poem of seven-character lines about this event. He never cares about who’s right or wrong, win or lose, but everything is in his smile.   

马来西亚美食家-一笑中

Part III of III Food Critic

Second Chapter

Sentiment

Intro

Green tea is more fragrant, Oolong and Pu’er lasting aroma, while Tieguanyin has the flavour of orchids. A pot of tea can brew a chapter of love, tender and elegant.

At the age of 18, a girl who had just entered college met a man who was much older than her. He took her to pick flowers and went to places where the girl had never been and had eaten something she had never eaten before. The two had a close relationship and had an endless topic to talk about for nights.

Until the man suddenly disappeared, the girl was in the dormitory and waited for him for several nights. She did not expect that one day, as soon as the door was opened, she saw him and bring her the first gift in her life “ivory earrings”、 He listened to her about her experience in the past few days. Then he took her back to the teahouse, made a pot of tea for her personally, asked her to wear earrings, and showed it to those who despised her before.

When she first arrived at the teahouse, the waitress always had that unbelievable face, she seemed to question “such a young student does not know how to appreciate the tea” and even ignored her. He didn’t say much, picking up his own collection of tea-Dongding Oolong, which it didn’t even have in the teahouse. He asked for boiled water to make the tea for the girl personally. He brought her to the teahouse every day and asked the waiter to serve her well as this female college student was about to be their regular customer. One semester passed, the girl finally received her love in the teahouse. But those waitresses seemed misjudged the girl. They didn’t know that the young girl can write calligraphy well and she is so talented. They didn’t even know that the boyfriend she fell in love with was the old friend of the big boss behind the teahouse. All the good Yixing pots in the store were chosen and bought by him firstly and the remaining pots sell in the teahouse. Furthermore, the tea was provided by him to the boss. The two of them just sat and laughed in the teahouse. With this sentiment, let it become a romantic tea place so that all lovers are nostalgic for it, and there is a “love” with tea everywhere.

He has decided to take up the courage to be a man again and use his life to protect this girl.

Smell

马来西亚食神-茶园

目录

Photography of Wife Christin at Tea Garden

Not to stick to one Pattern 

A FOOD CRITIC

Except for He is a Gourmet, he also has more talents

Such as create poems, written antithetic and Qimen 

AS HE IS A CLASSIC

Gourmet Zhang Dai in Ming Dynasty pointed out that “If a person has no hobbies, you should not associate with him, because he has no love in his heart. If a person has no shortcomings, it means that everything you sees from his is fake and false. Another metaphor is that you should not make friends with person who has no knowledge or experiences, because you could not learn new knowledge from him.” Therefore, people who has “favorites” and “flaws” has the heart of a child, emphasizing love and righteousness, and not pretentious. Although some may acting a bit weird and not get well with others, but they have a kind of elegant and magnanimous, able to do whatever they want and be at ease.

— From Zhang Dai’s “Pottery Recall by Buddhist Nunnery Dreams”

One who have no hobbies should not make friend with him, because he has no loves;

One who have no flaws should not make friend with him, as he has not true

Back

TO

90’s

2 Parts 

of Jacky 

on Chinese Tea 

1st

Tea

Story

马来西亚食神-茶壶

The teapot produced from early China Yixing No.1 Factory, purple clay pot with red clay powder, engraved with “Please drink Chinese Oolong Tea”. It is a four cups portion.

First Entry Career 

Chinese Tea 

Coffee

When he tried to stage to comeback, he will followed what he had familiar, that is the “food critic” career related to food 

The Tea Fairy in Teahouse 

Jacky Liew

His first entry career was selling tea and coffee. The target was “restaurants”. When a person starts an another career, he will inevitably develop according to the industry he is familiar with, that is, the field of “food critic” related to “food”

From acquaintance with Christin Lee in Teahouse, “Tea” became their matchmaker. Also because of her, he ended all the tea affair. As he felt that he shouldn’t be addicted to tea anymore, he should try to cheer her up and give her a home that she could entrust for all her life.

Walked past the tea cabinet at the corner, from the beginning there were countless Yixing pots until couldn’t put them down anymore and even the tea-table was filled with all kinds of small teapots. Now all of the teapots were filled with dust-like old tea stains. She now has learned to drink tea which previously she had never known tea. Everything just likes what happened yesterday.

From the first day Christin Lee met Jacky Liew in the teahouse, she felt that he has a domineering temperant which was different from her seniors. She often saw him bringing an old Chaozhou teapot that she did not know at the time. Then, he brewed the tea that bought by himself and drank it slowly from the spout.

It is said that this is a souvenir given to him by a deceased old man. Outside the teapot full of tea stains, it looks like it has never been washed in a century. It’s not that she hadn’t secretly opened the lid of the pot and glanced at it. It was filled with swollen tea leaves. He just boiled the water and poured inside, drinking from the spout of his tea with his mouth, like his heart, liver, spleen, lungs and kidneys were already numb and he seemed to lose his sense of anything. In her impression, only the artiste in Cantonese fragments or Cantonese opera can have such a drinking posture. She believes that his style was quite unique in Malaysia.

From the very beginning, in his room when he was landlord, she could see countless Yixing pots that she didn’t know at the time, all in a cupboard and on the ground. He said that these is the good things that money can’t buy. It seems that the man in front of him is like this, making tea in the room every night, reading a book, and sometimes holding a small teapot in his hand. He just like sustenance in the living for days and the rest is the empty body, like looking forward to the miracle that would come for the next day.

When Jacky Liew worked as a chef in Singapore and knew Wang Liansan, the news anchor of the Singapore Radio and Television Bureau. He invited his family to Malaysia to make a demonstration of Gongfu tea in the hotel where he was staying. At that time, few people knew about the tea art, so he accepted an interview. Left of Jacky is Christin

马来西亚食神-百年老壶

This is a late Chaozhou old man who has drunk tea for a lifetime. He gifted Jacky Liew a century-old “Mengchen Pot” commonly known as “Chong Guan”. It is filled with tea leaves.

Tea advisor of Xishuangbanna

Mr. Lin, the top ten outstanding figures of Pu’er in the world, Xishuangbanna Dai Autonomous Prefecture, tea industry consultant. Jacky Liew exchanged the experience in Banna tea area and shared the information about world’s most expensive “Pu’er Tea King”.

Now because of his babbling baby daughter used it like the toys and a lot of valuable ancient pots were broken. Either the ears of teapots were missing or the spouts were broken without the lid. So he had to keep all of his treasures away in a few boxes. Only a few were left for his daughter to play. He taught his daughter to drink tea when she grew up so that in the future, his children’s knowledge of tea art almost reach the expert level. Looking back at that time, he never regarded the “Chinese teapot” as a tool for making money. He often said that “love” is not the thing that can give up painfully, if it is the things that you truly love, you will not give it up. It can be seen that the love he pours into these tea works of art is far less than the love given to his children. So, even if they are broken and then glued back, he will still be happy to have them. He said that this is the teapot that is unique in the world and it has become a delight that children often mention. For those teapots that were unable to stick back, he would be fixed on the wall with clay as a work of art.

For modern people, they don’t drink tea from the spout in a tricky way anymore. It is easy to understand, as drinking the hot tea directly from the spout is hard. Even when holding a teapot moistened with hot water, the temperature is also hard to endure. So the way of Jacky Liew drinks the tea is quite mystical to Christin. Every time, she saw him raise his head slightly, pouring tea into his mouth, just like his mouth is a teacup. For ordinary people, perhaps their tongues are cooked. Furthermore, he would fill the teapots full of tea leaves and without washing them. The tea leaves soaking in the teapots until it swells and left to ferment.

Despite this, he would often go to the teahouse to appreciate those Chinese teapots. When he wanted to buy it, he would be stared at by his wife, as if saying, “We already have a lot of teapots at home.” So he could only switch his thoughts away and back to his home, take out all of his old teapots, wipe and clean them. These were the old habits he couldn’t change. When he drinks tea, he still likes to drink alone with the teapot, enjoying the “free and easy” romance.

She had also heard him say in the teahouse that if the first brew of good tea is poured, it is a waste. It’s also said that good tea is equivalent to good wine. If drank, it couldn’t buy back anymore. Plus, the teas produced in different seasons have different tastes. Spring, summer, autumn, and winter each have their charm. The reason is related to the place of origin, climate, baking, finishing, and which master to make it. Its nature is similar to wine, like which vintage is better, which climate is not good, all of them are relevant to production.

As for “tea appraisal”, he said that in general tea competitions, 3 grams of tea leaves are taken from each type of tea, put into 150 ml of teacups that is, a fairness mug and a porcelain teacup. Observe the appearance of the tea. Pours 100 degrees of hot water inside the teacups. Pours out the tea on tea appraisal saucer after 6 minutes, observes the tea liquid, wait until the temperature drops to 40 degrees, then start to smell the hot aroma from the brewed leaves and taste the tea flavour.

“Smell the aroma” mainly detects its strong, light, purity, turbid and whether it is green and astringency, smoke, burnt, oily and other odours. The “colour of tea soup” is looking at its concentration, opacity and brightness. The best way is to take a porcelain spoon and scoop a spoonful to see if it’s qualified. In the end, taste the tea soup, including the sweetness, bitterness, thickness, irritation, and fermentation. Therefore, professional tea tasters must have a “sensitive tongue”, careful and experienced, all of which are indispensable.

Having said that, after more than ten years, he still never waited for the tea to be cool in drinking. Now he will allow the tea-soaked as long as he can until become bitter. It’s like smoking opium and can’t get rid of it. Because he could not satisfied with the ordinary taste of Chinese tea. He even argued that the taste of bitter tea is the real taste of life. If one doesn’t experience bitterness, how can one know the joy of bitterness in bitterness? He has good knowledge about tea. When she first learned tea from him, she saw him demonstrate how to control the temperature of the water and use air to reduce the temperature of the water until drinkable and how to restore the tea that brewed in the wrong way. Maybe this is the way of life that advocates his “relaxed and understated”.

To let Christin Lee know more about tea, he sometimes explained the quality of tea patiently, just like a little boy who meets his playmates, chattering endlessly. He also explained how to make a good tea, how to taste the small cup of tea and taught her what is meant by “Taste (Chinese: 品)” in tea terminology. That is, drink half of the small cup, keep in your mouth, don’t swallow it until feeling the fragrance, a little bit of sweetness and bitterness. When the tongue produced saliva, it is called “tea starch (Chinese: 茗)”. The rule is after three times of infusion, the leaves must be dump. So they just drink day and night until getting “drunk”. He believes that tea makes him ecstatically, however, he is still sober even everyone is drunk. So the tea friends who were familiar with him crowned him as “Tea Fairy”.

It was also at the point of time, he cared more about what tea should be served with what teapot, what tea should be served at what temperature and what kind of tea flavour can be produced from where the mountains and rivers are. He believes this is the feeling that both men and women in honey love will have. He always wants to give the best to her. Others may not know it, but the ground was to cherish the time being with her. He also stipulated that each pot can only serve one kind of tea as a symbol of allegiance and the preservation of the tea fragrance in the pot. This is the metaphor for the emotions of husband and wife over the years. Even if did not put on tea leaves, it also can release a long-lasting tea taste.

In the Song Dynasty, Su Shi once wrote a poem showing the way of a tea addict person. In the Ming Dynasty, Chen Jiru’s “Yanqi Youshi” also explained tea tasting “Sole-drinking feel amazed, two people get the fun, three people get the taste, seven or eight people just like almsgiving of tea”. The core of the line is to highlight “how to taste” and “tea style endowed with a gentleman’s character.” What’s more, after this, Jacky Liew has her, it seems as tea meets a clear spring and is activated from then on, showing the close relationship between tea and water.

In retrospect, he had been pursuing a kind of realm under the influence of literature. To make a good tea, he would not hesitate to take the spring water from the mountain in the early morning or travel a long way to obtain the water seeping from the stones. Because it is cool, as clear as dew. To test the quality of water, it may be put in a coin, if the water quality is good, the water may be higher than the lip of the cup without overflowing, showing its good tension. If infuse the tea with good water, the tea soup will be clear and bright, fragrant and fresh. It has the smell of fresh algae. After since he has family, he no longer has the mood to “seek water” for thousands of miles.

食公子收藏的金奖老茶饼

马来西亚食神-茶饼

He once heard Christin talk about the plot of Chapter 40 titled “Jia Baoyu taste tea in Green Lattice Nunnery” in “Dream of Red Mansions“, which described how Miaoyu made tea for Grandmother Jia and others. When Miaoyu made tea for Daiyu, Daiyu was mentioned about the water used and asked, “Is this rain from the old years?” Miaoyu said, “That’s the snow on the plum blossoms I collected at Xuanmu Panxiang Temple five years ago. It only has a full of flower urn. But I grudged to eat it, so I buried it in the ground. I ate it once this summer. This is the second time.” She can’t help asking, “You can’t taste it? How can the rainwater of the previous year be so pure?” In detail, the water melted by the snow on the flowers has two major advantages, namely, mellow and fragrant, it is best to brew the tea.

However, Jacky has a different opinion. According to the tea scholars in the Tang Dynasty, he was hailed as the “tea fairy” and regarded as the “tea saint” and “tea god”. He stated in his book “The Classic of Tea”: ” The best is mountain (spring) water, the second is the river water (tap water), the worst is the well water (mineral water)”. It can be seen that ancient people are well versed in the principles of choosing water. But according to the good and bad of water, modern people have used scientific theories to distinguish the water [1]. Therefore, when drinking tea, “choose water” should be the first to particular, and the water is divided into hard water and soft water.

In addition, he was particular when drinking tea with Christin Lee before. However, on normal days, Jacky Liew never made tea according to the rules of the tea people, saying that these were not his own needs, but it is the way of tea merchants to make money for profit. It has long lost the teahouse atmosphere planted by its predecessors. As long as one understands tea, water, and utensils, he can be regarded as a person who knows tea ceremonies. Knowing tea is not considered as a great thing. Why should we care about what others mean?

He also said that he is a person who can adapt to all kinds of environments, but he doesn’t like red tape to play tea art. Drinking tea does not need to show how well in understand tea. This is not the true way of drinking tea. His way of treating tea art is different from the literary spirit of “making tea” and “sitting for tea” or the meticulousness of “eating tea”. He thinks the tea person must be domineering in order to be able to support the kind of vigorous spirit that holds the teapot as if fate is in the palm of his hand. The volume of speaking should be loud and clear like an ancient bell. Although he seems like a gentleman or a scholar. But he will inadvertently exude a bit of strong-willed, revealing his uniqueness in seeing people and things. He said that tea is not only edible but also intoxicating. The method of distinguishing bad or good is through comparation such as green tea is more fragrant, Oolong variety and Pu’er variety have a aftertaste, Longjing has more aroma and elegance while Iron Goodness Variety (Tieguanyin) has the rich and wonderful fragrance of natural orchids and has the infinite tea taste as solemn as iron. It is never drinking “scented tea”, which is too feminine, lack heroism.

In the later period, he was already not picky in drinking all kinds of tea, no matter how good or bad it was. He also enjoys the joy of drinking wherever he goes. Quoted the said of great writer Liang Qichao, his early ideologism build his own “karma”. Previously, for teapot nurturing, he would make the teapot dip into the used tea water. Without caring that the teapot would be destroyed by the miscellaneous smells. He even tried to use the best water boiling points that are the fish-eye stage for preparing the early spring tea, Shifeng Dragon Well, Biluochun, Baimao Tea with porcelain lid teacups. He also had been observing the tea liquid, smelling the aroma, taste the tea flavour likes the tea scholar. Later he turned into appreciated the Gongfu tea of Teo Chew. At the time, he would raise his head slightly and pour the tea into his mouth. But now he would just put the tea leaves into boil water and drink the big bowl of tea. When he had tasted the most expensive aged Pu’er variety to the simple Liubao tea, he was no longer fussy. This is the point of time he “understands” tea and he also found that as long as he has tea on his hand, he will be satisfied.

As a writer, he always hopes to enter a new experience. This kind of artistic conception is close to “Zen” and “Dao”. From some aspects, it is the same with tea arts. This is his enlightenment about tea which is consistent with the idea of “restore to nature” the martial arts that he is fascinated with. Those masters who practice martial arts wish to understand the profundities in order to achieve the summit. This is the highest level of seeking knowledge. Based on this, it can fully explain that the Wuxia World Masters, no matter which novel comes from, is deeply influenced by Buddhism and Taoism. He summarized these philosophies and blended the aesthetic awareness and depth of thought about the tea, he did not stick to a teapot, a teacup, a trick, and a style of what he wanted.

马来西亚食神-林德荣 大碗茶

Jacky Liew and Malaysian film production company director Jack Lim drank the “big bowl of tea”

He also has the friends who have same interest. But most of them don’t care about the variety of tea, as long as there is tea to drink. They have limited knowledge in discussing about “stir fixation”, what is ” Melon Seed tea” or “Yunnan green tea” and others . Therefore, the tea friends around regarded him unique in taste and arrogant. Even if he was unpleasant with their speech, he would just built a high wall and keep people thousands of miles away. Whatever people think of him, he just loves what he does, regardless of whether people like it or not. It gives the impression that he is a tea freak who is extremely difficult to get along with.

马来西亚食神-以前是父亲吸泉煮茶,现在是儿子提水烹茶

In the past, it was Jacky who taught his children to taste tea besides the mountain spring. Now is the son takes water from springs and make the tea for his father.

Therefore, there is a principle of “8-points of tea” but “10-points of water” which means if the water is good, the tea gets a full mark. If the water is used improperly, the tea will be reduced to eight points. Therefore, it is necessary to “select water” for tea.

In fact, tea tasting is the same as food, emphasizing the color, aroma, taste and appearance. Tea experts will pay attention to the original taste and tea color. For tea, the best production is spring and autumn.

Zhang Yuan of the Ming Dynasty stated more clearly about tea and water in his “Tea Records“: “Tea is the spirit of water while water is the soul of tea. Only qualified water shows tea’s soul and only qualified tea build the spirit of water.” It is said that good water can make tea reflect good colour, fragrance and taste. During Tang and Song dynasties, the requirements for drinking tea were even more stringent. The water quality must be clear, lively, and light. The taste of water must be sweet, clear, and cold. In Zhao Ji’s “Tea Theory Composition“: “Water needs to be bright, light, sweet, and clean. This is the nature of the water that hardly found.” When the ancients talked about water, the most ideal was mountain spring water. Lu Yu’s “The Classic of Tea” also comments on the water: “The best water should be obtained from mountains’ springs, rivers and stalactite water. For the water from rushing waterfalls, do not eat them.” This can be seen in the strict choice of ancient people to water.

That is because the spring water is filtered through sand, rock and soil. So its nature is cool, clean and luscious. It also absorbs carbon dioxide and dissolves sodium, potassium, calcium, magnesium, aluminium and other elements, so that the water is rich in nutrients and appears clear. Certain spring water also adsorbs hydrogen, a radioactive rare gas with various pharmacological effects, and becomes high-quality spring water. He has experimented with this theory, using rainwater, spring water, tap water, and well water to brew the tea with the Longjing tea which has the lightest taste. As a result, spring water is the first, followed by rain, and third is tap water and well water. But there are exceptions. For water with high mineral content or sulfur content, the taste of the drink will be destroyed.

He loves tea since was a child. Even for ordinary tea, he would think it is the best. Although the tea is bitter, he would rather add water again and again for tea. He dislikes to drink plain water as in thinking the life is too plain, it is worst than the situation of “the tea cools down as soon as the person is gone”. After a long time, he has inadvertently made his tongue become more critical. Now, he has to bring his favourite tea species even when he goes out. In fact, this has a scientific basis. Because the human body needs a balance of various elements and the chemical composition contained in the water and soil in different places is different. When one is away from home, the body can’t withstand the new environment, there will be a metabolic disorder. At this time, his “tea” can just adjust the body’s physical functions and make adaptations. Jacky Liew often compares “tea” as the medicine that antidotes to poison in the Wuxia world.

From the first time he went to a teahouse and drank Taiwan’s high mountain “Dongding Oolong Tea”, he had considered it as a quality good tea. At that time, he still has no idea what is “Dongding Oolong”? Later, he learned that this tea has an extraordinary origin. This may be due to the “obsessive” character of Jacky Liew since childhood. Once he is fascinated by something, he will get to the bottom of it, resulting in everyone misunderstanding him and thinking he likes to show off.

When he first taste Dongding Oolong, he searched every tea books to understand it’s origin[2]. Later, he found out the unique scent of Dongding Oolong was created through the process of rolling to a compact hemispherical shape. If for “fresh fragrance”, it has to produce from the upper part of the tea, the so-called “one-tip two-leaves”. The lower part of the tea stem is used to make cheap tea because it has a bitter and astringent taste. In addition, the tea leaves are required to unravel to prevent a peculiar smell. Then, setting to remove the water, again repeatedly rolling and unraveling for forty times. So the process goes from picking, sun withering, setting, fermentation until stir fixation to stop the tea leaves fermenting.

The traditional Dongding Oolong tea has a slight “charcoal fragrance” in its aftertaste due to roast by charcoal. Compared to electric roasted tea, although the tea variety is the same, but will produce two different tea flavours. The charcoal roasted tea even infuse to several times, the taste is still soft and sweet. But electric roasted tea will turn astringency after two or three times of infusions. Moreover, “charcoal roasting” can volatilize pesticides. Dongding oolong is mild to moderately fermented tea. The tea liquid performs bright and golden. For handmade-roasted tea has a unique charcoal-like sweet-scented osmanthus fragrance. The experts praised it as “Dongding Shantou Flavor (the flavour of Frozen Hill Top)”. But the “handmade-roasted tea” is not easy to handle for heat and time, so it is very expensive.

THE CHINESE 

ART OF 

TEAPOT

Daughter’s Toy

马来西亚食神-女儿的玩具

The One and Only Collection

When daughter began to grow up, as father, he would hurried in teaching her Chinese tea culture and trained her to be a knowledgeable and talented girl. However, most of the teapot became her toys and turn into broken, so her father forced to stick back with glue. Someone said, if there are two same antiques, just destroy one of them and the left one will be valueless. After that, this teapot became the masterwork of both father and daughter. It is the one and only which carried the precious memories.  

China Tea Cultures does not refer to general meaning of tea drinking, but the one who beyond the world to appreciate the cultures, it does not limited on the Chinese craftsmanship and teapot arts, but a kind of spirit which is free and unbound. The people who taste tea are generally literati or Buddhist scholars who comprehend Zen. The appreciation of tea should be focus on the State of Humanism which is Oneness of Dhyana and Tea and performs in the way of suit in all taste. 

Purple Sandy Teapot of Yixing

C

ollection

of Jacky

马来西亚食神-飞天壶

The early Taiwan Handcraft Cracked Glazed Wing Handle Pot

The Early Standard for the Collection of Yixing Pots by Jacky Liew was based on the Book of Chinese Teapots Appraisal and Selection Guidance

Jacky Liew’s Collection of “Red Clay Standard Teapot”, one to twelve cup portion of standard purple-clay pot, made by old Yixing factory.

Jacky Liew’s Early Collection of “Red Sandy Clay Three-feet Well Balanced Teapot”

马来西亚食神-思亭壶

“Individual Si Ting Teapot”, one of the Four Famous Teapots

Early “Red Sand Clay Pear-shaped teapot”

Top Ten Classic Types of Chinese Clay Teapots

Jacky Liew’s collection “Imitation Spring Offering Teapot” (Top Ten Classic Teapot)

Purple Sand Clay Little Stone Ladle Teapot (Top Ten Classic Teapot)

Spring Welcoming Teapot (Top Ten Classic Teapot)

Early Red Sandy Clay Coloured Glaze Balanced Teapot (Top Ten Famous Teapot)

Jacky Liew’s Favourite Little Chinese Teapots of Different Sandy Clay

Red (Red Sandy Clay), Yellow (Beige Sandy Clay), Grey, Blue, Green, Black, Purple Sandy Clay  

Flask Teapot with Hand carved “The Heart Of Prajna Paramita Sutra” (Top Ten Classic Teapot-Shape) 

China Yixing Old No.1 Factory Early Beige Sandy Clay Hexagon Teapot

80s China Yixing Old No.1 Factory, Grey Bowl-like Teapot

Early Blue Clay Jun De Teapot

Early Assorted Chinese Teapots with Chinese Poems Hand-carved at Bottom

The southern Fujian proverb in ranking, “First Wuming, second Si Ting, third Meng Chen, forth Yi Gong”. Therefore, the Purple Sandy Clay Teapots with either of above inscription were appeared in the late Ming and early Qing Dynasty and flourished in the late Qing Dynasty. But most of them were made from Red Sandy Clay.

Among them, the “Wuming” refers to the “Spring Offering Teapot” which is one of the top ten famous teapots. “Lu Si Ting” is synonymous with a specific teapot style. While “Hui Meng Chen” and “Hui Yi Gong” both famous in small and large teapots, which are ingenious and unpretentious. However, “Meng Chen Teapot” is more simple and exquisite. As for the “Jun De Teapot” is named after Zhang Jun De.

马来西亚食神-思亭

80s “Si Ting” Three-feet Green Teapot

马来西亚食神-孟臣

Early Yi Xing No.1 Factory Purple Sandy Clay “Meng Chen” Square Well Teapot 

马来西亚食神-逸公

Old No.1 Factory Crude Ore Purple Sandy Clay Teapot – “Yi Gong” Purple Sandy Clay Flask Teapot 

Early “Jun De” Black Sandy Clay Fish Cover Teapot

The Similar Chinese Teapots

马来西亚食神-黑砂西施

Purple Sandy Clay Reverse Handle Lady Xi Shi Yixing Teapot

马来西亚食神-紫外紅西施壺

80s Inner Purple Outer Red Lady Xi Shi Teapot, from China Yixing Old No.1 Factory

马来西亚食神-台湾段泥柚形文旦壶

Early Taiwan Beige Sandy Clay Melon-Shaped Wen Dan Teapot

马来西亚食神-龙旦

Early Crude Ore Egg-liked Dragon-egg (Long Dan) teapot. 

China Yixing Stylist Teapots

马来西亚食神-梅花壶

Plum Bossom Teapot

马来西亚食神-卧狮菊球壶

Lying Lion and Chrysanthemum Teapot

马来西亚食神-南瓜壶

Beige Sandy Clay Pumpkin Teapot 

马来西亚食神-孟臣梨形壶

70s Purple Sandy Clay Guava-shaped Yixing Teapot, from China Yixing old No.1 Factory

China Yixing Old No,1 Factory Purple Clay Teapots – Five Elements Teapots

Red Sandy Clay Wrist-Line Round Teapot, from China Yixing Old No.1 Factory

马来西亚食神-內紫外紅太監嘴

Early Inner Purple and Outer Red Eunuch Mouth Teapot (One of the Five Elements Teapot), from China Yixing Old No.1 Factory

马来西亚食神-神灯水平壶

70s Red Sandy Clay Magic Lamp Teapot, from China Yixing Old Factory

马来西亚食神-肉饼壶

80s Inner Purple Outer Red Flask Teapot, from China Yixing Old No.1 Factory

Red Sandy Claypot After Nurturing

Before Nurturing

Difference 

TEA

WINE

FOOD GOD

TEA FAIRY

WINE

SAINTS

Beauty Who Drink Tea and Taste Wine

In the 1980s, few people knew about tea and collected teapots. [3] After him be versed in tea appraisal, he started to fascinated in Chinese teapots. He had been vexed on spending too much time in making tea and nurturing teapots. But at that time, he just couldn’t do without tea and teapots. Now his habits were not changed. He thought that it is a kind of playthings that sap the wills. It made him indulge in the dim lights all day, listening to old-aged music, like losing the fighting spirit and losing self. In the end, he set his heart, intentionally or unintentionally, hinted at Christin to put away all his teapot, leaving only a few of the most commonly used ones for him.

Christin had been attentive that he would cherish what he bought back with his own money. He was always willing to give for his children and even outsiders, on the contrary, he extremely demanding of himself. However, he is never stingy with what he likes. He once stated that as long as it can be bought back with money, it is not a problem, only if you can’t buy your favourite, it’s true pain of.

When he got older, the economy is getting better and things have changed, he started to study wine, but the daily practice still had three or more cups of coffee and a few teapots of tea. Perhaps he has a high tolerance to liquor was due to frequent social interactions, which results in his nickname of “wine saint”. Furthermore, he was also praised by others of his specialist in “speak, eat, and drink” in the food world. In other words, at any banquet, if someone toasted to him, he would have to drink three cups continuously. Whenever he was drinking, he would prefer to chant poems just like the ancient poet to activate the atmosphere. So instead of saying that he loves alcohol much, rather than saying he likes the realm of those wine aficionados who compose the poetry on the banquet in ancient time and people grant them the names of “dipsomaniac”, “wine-demon”, “wine god”. While when he was young, he had the name “Tea Fairy”. At that time, he was carefree and self-esteem. Long ago, he has regarded tea as wine for relieving depression. Later, the wine had become the enlightenment for his determination to “strive for the hegemony”. Not for anything else, because he is crazy for the name of sword god and martial sage in the Wuxia novel. He thinks these are full of beautiful implications.

“Tea makes many seclusion people indulge in its aroma and Zen music. So they cannot focus on their thoughts and present Vikalpa (Buddhist term: signifies deluded or erroneous thinking). They also could not free themselves from the tea liquid. So how can they achieve enlightenment?” Look at those monks who had precious teapots and high-quality teas in their living rooms, aren’t these are kind of “karma”? If so, how they can apprehend for impermanence. That kind of “tea” was contaminated with the Five Poisons (greed, hatred, delusions, arrogance and doubt). It is not suitable for him as a food critic. In addition, drinking wine is not for his job but to strive for superiority in the business world. Apart from this, Jacky Liew rarely drinks alcohol on a common day. It is because alcohol can numb the tongue and affect food appraisal. So for those literati and foodies who often say how they are good at drinking have already lost their ability to taste food. Due to his focus on studying tech and without drinking even single drop of wine, he had a more sensitive tongue than before.

Can’t let go her lovely

But after all, “appreciation of food” is inseparable from wine. For other beverages are not as carefree as “wine”. People who don’t understand wine can never understand connotations of Qiu Jin’s “Before Wine”: “Grudge not paying a thousand pieces of gold for a treasured sword; Exchanging a mink coat for wine, you may as well feel proud.” This is a kind of “God of Wine’s spirit” that even one in suffering, but still inspired to work hard. It was the direction needed by the new thinkers in the great era at that time. But wine is not a must for gourmets. The reason he loves wine was only to pursue the realm of has been sung throughout the ages.

Even if there are many gentlewomen or debutantes around when he was socialized, but in his mind, they are incomparable to Christin Lee who knows wine. When she lies on her back in the executive chair, touches the bottom of the red wine glass with her fingertips, she is utterly beautiful at the moment when she is snorting on the hookah. Indeed, he had read countless ancient books but can’t find any similar words to describe the situations. Even the Chinese Four Beauties had no such illustrations on them. It shows that the woman is loved. Compared with ordinary women who only know how to pour wine into a glass, she is more outstanding. When she was tipsy and took off her high heels, barefoot, and ran all over the street wantonly, it was like a beautiful painting on the earthly realm

Notes

  1. The tea master shall understand the application of water in tea infusion. Types of water can be divided into mineral water, purified water, calcium ion water, magnetized water, and electrolyzed water.First, purified water, also known as distilled water which is prepared by distillation, electrolysis, and reverse osmosis. It does not contain additives and has high purity. The raw water for the production of purified water is ordinary tap water. Although purified water gives good clarity to tea liquid with pure aroma and taste, purified water is acidic. During the process of filtration or distillation, like a household water filter, although it can remove harmful substances in the water, however, it will also eliminate the minerals and trace elements that are needed for the body, so it is not beneficial to the human body. So it’s not that the more scientific the name, the more advanced it sounds, the more suitable it is for cooking, brewing and drinking.Second, the tap water, mostly from rivers and lakes, is natural water treated by the water filtration station. The problem is that the water remains in the transportation pipe for a long time, so it contains iron elements. It is required to boil to volatilize the chlorine in the water to be suitable for making tea.Third, mineral water is permanent “hard water” and is not suitable for making tea. People may find that mineral water is sweeter and smoother compared with ordinary water. So they think that mineral water is the best, suitable for tea and coffee, but it is not.Fourth, twice-boiled water. For the convenience of the restaurant, repeated boiling of water with an electric water heater will increase the metal content of magnesium, calcium, sodium, potassium and other metals in the water which make it become hard water. Not only will it diminish the taste, but long-term drinking will cause symptoms such as diarrhoea, nausea, dizziness and other symptoms with unpleasant electrical odours. In severe cases, people with poor kidney function can cause blood pressure to rise.Generally speaking, the hardness of water is closely related to tea soup. When you make tea with hard water, the tea liquid will become muddy, poor in transparency and the tea tastes unpleasant; when you make tea with soft water, the colour, aroma and taste are good, but pure water is not beneficial to the human body. So go back to nature, just use simple tap water to make good tea.
    ↩
  2. The Name of Dongding OolongThe Chinese tea Oolong named “Oolong” because it is said that after the tea leaves are roasted and processed, the tea leaves become black in color and resemble fish. In ancient times, fish was called as dragon. In Taiwan, since the tea was cultivated at the mountain named “Dongding (Frozen-Summit)”, so the Taiwan species has the name Dongding Oolong.The name was taken from the meaning of “Cold from the top of the head to the feet” of Dongding Mountain. Because the annual average temperature of Dongding Mountain is 20-22 °C, it is suitable for the growth of tea trees. The wet, oily, acidic red soil, with a lot of organic matter and good drainage, is also in line with the growth of tea trees. Therefore, there is a kind of oil cake for the freshly picked tea, which is like the smell of glutinous rice. In old time, Chiang Ching-kuo and Xie Dongmin’s favorite was to taste the Dongding Oolong Tea at Lugu, Nantou, Taiwan.
    Origin of Oolong
    According to legend, the source of the seedlings of Dongding Oolong tea is native in Nantou, Taiwan because scholars believe that Dongding Oolong tea is the famous “Shuishalian tea” in historical records since ancient times. The tea produced in central Taiwan has a long history. As early as the Kangxi period, “Zhuluo County Chronicles” mentioned that Shuishalian tea was produced in the central part of Taiwan. In 1908, “General History of Taiwan” also described Shuishalian tea’s “colour as Chinese Usnea, able to clear summer heat”, “Compared to the teas of the five cities are still on the market, Dongding Oolong is the best.” Because the two teas appeared at the same time in the records, so the scholars mislinked Shuishalian tea with Dongding Oolong as one. Some experts deny the statements by studying these two varieties from appearance to smell. They believe that Shuishalian tea should be the “Shi tea” of Taiwan’s origin. Because its appearance is different from Oolong tea. The leaves of Shi Tea are longer and slender than Oolong leaves. The distribution of leaf margins is also different so that the two teas are not the same tea species.A more widely spread theory is that in the fifth year of Emperor Xianfeng in the Qing Dynasty, Lin Fengchi, who went to Fujian for the participation of Imperial Examination and became the Imperial Scholar, brought 36 Qingxin Oolong tea seedlings back from Wuyi Mountain in Fujian, China to Taiwan and divided them into three parts. One was left for his family to plant in Dongding Mountain, the second was handed over to local farming and planting, and the 12 plants left were donated to the family of Lin Sanxian in Dongding Mountain, Nantou Lugu who helped him go to Fujian for the examination. So it was transplanted to the hills, mountains, and terraces of Lugu Township, Nantou County, Taiwan about 500 meters above sea level. Although this claim is not recorded in historical data, it is widespread among the local population.Some scholars investigated and believed that although the introduction of Fujian tea into Taiwan’s history has been described in Emperor Jiaqing of Qing Dynasty, until the Emperor Daoguang period, the scope of tea cultivation was limited to Taipei. In Lian Heng’s “Agricultural History of Taiwan“, Fujian tea was first moved to Taiwan and planted in Shenkeng and Pinglin, New Taipei City.Some scholars investigated and believed that although the introduction of Fujian tea into Taiwan’s history has been described in Emperor Jiaqing of Qing Dynasty. However, until the Emperor Daoguang period, the scope of tea cultivation was limited to Taipei. In Lian Heng’s “Agricultural History of Taiwan”, Fujian tea was first moved to Taiwan and planted in Shenkeng and Pinglin, New Taipei City.

    Another Taiwan historian Chen Zhesan mentioned that in the “Customs Report” during the Emperor Guangxu period, “Although it is not suitable to grow plants in the south, but there are also wild tea trees in the mountains.” This means that until Guangxu period, the South of Taiwan does not have any Wuyi Tea moved into there. However, Lin Fengchi was person during the Emperor Xianfeng period, which is obviously not in the same period.

    Therefore, Dongding Oolong is obviously not the tea that Lin Fengchi brought to Taiwan during the Xianfeng period.

    After some scholars have studied it, the argument adopted after comparison is that Dongding Oolong tea should have been grown in the Guangxu period which from a family surnamed Su in northern Taiwan was first cultivated very successfully, and then brought from northern Taiwan to central China. Only then is the history of re-transplanting tea in Lugu Dongding Mountain. Therefore, the Su family is the original ancestor of the development of Dongding Oolong tea, not Lin Fengchi. The reason of the legend of Lin Fengchi perhaps due to his ancestral home was in Longxi Township, where tea was originally produced. After he became the imperial scholar, he promoted tea planting in the middle of the country. It was then pass from mouth to mouth with approbation. Later, tea farmers all used his name.
    Taiwan’s “Father of Taiwan Tea”, Wu Zhenduo visited Fujian in 1990. He believed that the source of Taiwan Dongfeng Oolong was in Guilin Village, Dongfeng Town, Jian’ou District, Nanping City. The local government also erected a monument for this, so it belongs to Jian’ou Aijiao Oolong tea, later came to Taiwan due to changes in the environment and climate, it turn into the current Dongding Oolong tea species. Due to the huge trading volume of Lugu Dongding Oolong Tea in Nantou, Taiwan, it is known as “the saint of tea”, and its worth is indeed 3-10 times higher than that of oolong tea produced in other places.

    In 1951, the first excellent tea competition was held in Nantou County. After that, tea competitions and sales were held in spring and winter every year, which not only increased the popularity of Taiwanese tea, but also put the price of tea and the reputation of Taiwan’s Dong Ding Oolong Tea off. At present, one catty of special class tea costs NT$60,000, which can rise to NT$300,000 per catty after the game. It was classified into special class, top ten, and then first class, second class, third class, excellent and number of plum blossoms, the the eliminated Oolong tea will made into cheaper Oolong tea. Later, the tea price was raised large probably due to the mainland buyers purchasal. Because Taiwanese tea pays more attention to the part of “fermentation” and “aftertaste”, therefore the flavor of tea is better than the mainland tea. To talk about the oolong tea produced in Wuyi Mountain, Fujian, to the Dongding Oolong in Taiwan, both of them are from same origin which has a history of 100 years.
    ↩

  3. In 1984, Jacky Liew started collected the Balanced Teapots. At that time, the collection of crafted purple sandy clay pots was not yet popular and the purple sandy clay pots made by old-aged masters were only worth for few hundred yuan. Until the 1990s, the purple sandy clay pot was highly speculated by collectors from Taiwan and Hong Kong, which caused the purple sandy clay pot to become a treasure.
    ↩

THE FOOD

CRITIC’S 

RELEVANT 

IN 

TEA MATTERS

Part II

Extra 

Tea History

马来西亚食神-名家印

Tea Arts Connoisseur

2nd Part:Tea History

Chinese people are inseparable from “tea” and “wine”. In the gradual timetable of history, the recognition value cultivated by life has long been popularized. The consumption-ability of the ordinary class in Chinese history was limited. The citizen who are worried about food and shelter considered tea and wine were luxury goods at the time. The tea art or wine and having fun is supposed to be a waste and not the necessities. However, it has not affected the artistic development of “tea affair” and “wine affair” since ancient times. As far as taste and value are concerned, it was alienated from the life of commoners but was merely an elegant activity for the intellectuals to entertain and taste.

Monk’s Tea Ceremony

“Chinese Tea ceremony” does not refer to the activity of “tea tasting”, but focuses on the business relevant to tea sales or the “tea” and “teapots” for tea customers to appraise. It also refers to professionals who meditate about philosophy with tea. Nowadays, food appreciation is added along with the needs of tea affairs as creativity beyond the old vulgar level. Therefore, the art of tea is no longer limited to the scope of tea cultivation, tea making, tea appreciating or craftsman’s skilful teapot making skills. It is a kind of adding “tea” into a reasonable basis for food and beverage and making tea practically applicable becomes the part of delicacy. Those who follow this way should be called “Connoisseurs of Tea Art“.

The “tea masters” of the past Chinese dynasties mainly refer to the two major categories of literati and scholars or Buddhism and Taoism. Both of them pay attention to spiritually interlinked practice, knowing Buddhism, awakening for Zen or using tea as inspiration for poetry to reach the enlightenment of literary thoughts. This is probably due to the intersection between philosophy in Buddhism, Taoism, Confucianism in history. No matter in literature or deportment, the intention is to express its elegance, its meaning, its manners and pursue the ultimate artistic conception of “grace” from the outer to the inner of a person. So as to realize the purification of heart, lyricism, joy of wisdom and tea manner in moulding personal temperant. It is suitable for personal cultivation and spiritual desire and it is no longer purely to satisfy the materialistic of person for tea.

As for the tea people in Zen School, because “Zen” aims at not establishing the enlightenment of words and learning Zen also allows them to drink tea as the foundation for enlightenment. Therefore, most of them use tea as a “Zen tool” and form “Oneness Of Dhyana And Tea” (Buddhist term: refer to Meditation Practice Is Embodied By Drinking Tea And Drinking Tea Is A Way To Practicing Meditation). This is different from the live in a simple life sought by worldly conventions. But it may be kind of similar to the pursuit of the Taoist Quanzhen “to enlightenment into the void-quietness (Zhuangzi refers to a kind of pure and empty mentality which cannot be interfered by any subjective or objective factors)” to forget the Kleshas (Buddhist term: mental states that cloud the mind) and void Avidya (Buddhist term: delusion or ignorance). Therefore, the Three Realms will use the power of tea to calm the presence of mind and ethereal spirit. The “Tao” endowed by tea can be reflected through meditation, concentration, relaxation and comprehension.

Tea Drinking in Secular World

The intangible products of “tea affair” include tea classics, tea zen, tea art, tea names, tea sets, refreshments, tea houses, tea parties, tea markets, tea poems, tea reviews, and so on.

China is the first to discover the source of tea trees and tea plants. The modern word of “tea” in Chinese (茶) is translated from the Cantonese or Xiamen dialects. It was called “槚”, “莈”, “荈”, “茗” in ancient times. The earliest tea plant originated in the hilly area of ​Yunnan-Guizhou Plateau in southwest China. In the history of tea, tea has inextricably linked relations with taxation, etiquette, customs, folk, literature, art, religion, diet therapy and banquets, and it is once again revered as China’s “tea culture”.

Types of tea can be classified into three types of tea according to the season of picking, that is, spring, summer and autumn in the forms of striped tea, sliced ​​tea, Gunpowder tea, and Broken tea. According to the degree of fermentation of tea polyphenol oxidation, it can be divided into green tea (not fermented), white tea (light fermentation), yellow tea (slightly fermentation), black tea (post-fermentation), black tea (full fermentation). The appearance gradually changes from green to yellow-green, yellow, green-brown, dark green, and black. The “tea liquid” has colours from green to yellow-green, orange-yellow, green-brown, and red-brown. There are also scented tea, brick tea and medicinal tea. The tea usually can be refreshing, promoting body fluid, diuresis, relieving heat, sterilizing, dissolving fat, detoxifying alcohol, helping digestion, preventing arteriosclerosis, and lowering blood pressure. In addition, tea contains nearly 300 kinds of chemical components, which contain tea polyphenols, alkaloids, proteins, sugars, organic acids and a variety of vitamins and mineral elements.

The tea consists of the character of “hygroscopicity”. Due to its hydrophilic content, such as sugars, tea tannins, proteins, pectin substances, etc, if it is stored improperly and moisture in the air, it will cause the aroma to decrease, mould and agglomeration. Secondly, because the longer the storage of tea, the same as coffee, the elements inside it will gradually decrease, which will reduce the taste and aroma, dim and affect the quality. Furthermore, the peculiar smell produced is due to many colloidal substances and porous structures in tea and cause the tea to absorb the unpleasant smell and lose its value. Therefore, it needs to be sealed with a Mengchen jar or tin cans to avoid contact with the environment with unpleasant smells and the tea needs to be consumed as soon as possible.

Jacky Liew’s collection of antique Mengchen jar

马来西亚食神-孟臣罐

CULTURES of

TEA

“Tea culture” in China has been circulating for more than 4,700 years. “Tea”, which was first used as a medicine and sacrifice, then gradually assimilated into daily life. It is also often used for weddings, entertain to guests and entertainment. The tea began to popularize since the Han Dynasty, from Yunnan and Bashu along the way to Yangtze River, and it developed into trade in the areas of Guangdong and Guangxi. Until Wei-Jin North-South Period, the tea party held in the tea house was existed which entertain customers with tea and refreshments. Later, it joined the scholars who advocated “metaphysics” to promote lightness, sitting in meditation and abstaining from wine, and thus became an alternative to “drinking tea and composing poem”. The “Tea Party” be in fashion. After entering the Tang Dynasty, it was more common until the Song Dynasty prospered. The “Tea-Horse Trade Division” also established the activity of exchange of goods. The border people bartered horses and other livestock and products to get tea.

At that time, a large number of tea sets were mix-used with tableware. The line of “tea utensils and other wares all got” in the book “Chong Yue” refers to this. In Tang Dynasty, tea production and consumption reached their heyday. Since Emperor Dezong of Tang in 793 A.C, tea tax was officially levied and the tea monopoly right was implemented soon afterwards. A total of eight tea areas have been set up across the country which included more than ten provinces. Not only are there large-scale tea workshops, but also the technology of “steaming” and “compressing” has been invented. At this point, the first tea book appeared in China which was the “The Classic of Tea” by “Sage of Tea” Lu Yu. To this day, most of the teahouses still hang the portrait of “Liu Yu” to show their dedication and joy in their profession.

The book subdivided tea sets into 28 kinds, mainly in teapots (Cha Mu), teacups (Cha Zi) and bowls (Zhan). Later, Cui Ning’s daughter invented the “tea tray (Cha Tuo)”. The Song and Yuan Dynasty inherited the tea utensils from Tang Dysnaty. But they changed the water-boiling utensils into “tea bottles (Cha Ping)” and added a small bamboo brooms for stirring. It was not until the Ming and Qing tea utensils that they returned to basics which purple sandy clay teapots and ceramics were used to replace the gold and silver utensils[5]

Later, “bowl with fitted cover”, Chinese is also known as “Gai Zhan,” was made of pure white while teapots were better kiln-fired, and tin was the second-best teapot. The smaller the teapot, the more expensive it was. Each of the customers will allot with one small teapot for them to enjoy. For small pots, the fragrance and tea taste could remain. The tea cake only existed in the Ming Dynasty. The book The Dream of Red Mansions stated that Miaoyu has three tea sets which reflect the extraordinary as the tea masters at that time, treat seriously tea affairs and emphasized identity. However, most tea people still don’t pay much attention to it, as long as having teapots, teacups, lid cups and tea trays, they will satisfy with it and still love tea sets made of pottery kilns and porcelain.

In the 5th century, after China exported its first batch of tea to Turkey, then in the 6th century, it shipped tea-nurturing technology to Japan and other countries. During the Yuan, Ming, and Qing dynasties, tea affairs were more radiant. Three-fifths of the country is growing tea, leading to relatively improved skills. In Yuan Dynasty adopts the “drying method” and until Ming Dynasty adopts the way of”fried green tea”. Later, the introduction of high-end tea in the Qing Dynasty. On the other hand, the monopoly system gradually perfected, the tea-horse trade has become more prosperous. Chinese tea was exported to Europe for the first time in 1607. In 1886, the export sales reached 134,000 tons, accounting for 90% of the world’s total tea exports. It is known as the “home country of tea.” Because of the vigorous handicraft industry brought about by tea drinking, the exquisite tea sets and top teas stand out and lead to the emergence of the tea style and tea art nurtured by the “tea ceremony”.

There were many tea houses in the Qing Dynasty. Now, tea houses and tea rooms spread all over the north and south. Among them, Beijing, Shanghai, Hangzhou, Yangzhou, Chengdu, and Guangzhou are the most prosperous. According to the historical records of the Southern and Northern Dynasties, “Cha Liao (Tea hut)” is for guests to eat, drink and stay, later changed into “Cha Fang (Tea workshop)” in the Song Dynasty, and then the “Cha Si (Tea shop)” of Yuan and Ming Dynasty became exquisite. In the Qing Dynasty, “Cha Guan (Teahouse)” were generally divided into four categories. The northern part was typically for tea and dine, accompanied by storytelling and singing or “wild teahouses” that under trees in the suburbs. It usually furnishing with simple square tables and benches to attract customers; in the southeast part, Shanghai, Hangzhou, Nanjing, and Yangzhou are mostly set teahouse in scenic spots and downtowns. They have a strong cultural heritage, sophisticated tea sets, and a variety of tea products, as well as exquisite snacks and drinks; in the west part like Chengdu, normally is all bamboo tables and chairs, using lid teacups with jasmine tea mainly. At that time, the present of tea and adding water has its own set, such as “snow covered top”, “lion rolling hydrangea” tea art skills. Later it evolved into a gang practice. The place where people from everywhere gathered at these places. They use teapots and cups as way to arrange arms and embattle or carry out secret language, it called as “fighting (Dou Fa)” or “response (Ying Da).” For one who able to break the battle formation (Po Zhen) are considered as hero. If one who failed is represents as timid person or not their gang. In this way, the underground activities of the underworld are carried out. In the south part, Guangdong is led, mostly for morning tea and late-night snacks. The teahouses are relatively high in composition, and the layout and furnishings are emphasized.

“Take tea as wine” is a practice recorded in the Qing Dynasty. From the imperial court to the lower level and the common people, they all used tea as a substitute for wine. After the Republic of China, the public prefered frugality. Tea became the beverage suit to both refined and popular tastes. The old way of tea art which consumes time was abandoned. It derivative into another social form of tea social party that merged the ancient tea party and pure tea drinking. “Sitting tea” and “Tea draw” are two different concepts. “Tea draw” means thirst-quenching and short gatherings. “Sitting tea” represents tea tasting and a long talk. In addition, there are four ways of tea party (1) Tea tasting meeting is only for purely drinking tea, which originated from the Five Dynasties, and was transferred to “tea battle (Doucha)” in Song Dynasty and “tea tasting” in Ming and Qing dynasties. (2) Tea and Refreshment party starting from the Eastern Jin Dynasty, until Song and Yuan tea party was supplemented by pastry. (3) Tea sharing party was the origin of “Cha Chaan Teng (Chinese-style cafés)” which began from the Song Dynasty until the Qing Dynasty. (4) Tea reception is similar to the anniversary of companies in the Republic of China. Usually invites guests to enjoy a reception of various pastries.

The “tears drop” of little teapot

马来西亚食神-龙旦壶

The collection of small teapots is a skill. It cannot be placed in a place that is often exposed to the sun for a long time. The improper operation and bumps may cause internal injuries and subsequent use may cause cracking. Furthermre, the muddy density or thermal expansion and contraction during brewing, uneven heating can cause the body of teapot to “break”. The picture above shows the Red Sandy Clay water droplets-shaped teapot made by early Yixing old factory

马来西亚食神-公道杯

In the 1980s, the red sandy clay “fair mug” was functioned as “red wine decanter”. It was mainly used to make the tea soup uniform and the tea taste consistent, so it achieve fairness in every cup.

马来西亚食神-茶罐

The commemorative tea pot made by Yixing Zisha Craft Factory is only suitable for entertain guests. It is not suitable to be used as a Mengchen pot to store tea and it needs to be finish as soon as possible.

China and Japanese Tea Zen

Japanese tea Zen, the “Zen” often referred to by the tea people was originated from “Shan Daokai” of the Dunhuang monks in the Eastern Jin Dynasty, and then the Tanghua movement promoted the “Tea Zen” trend. After the Japanese monks came to China, they brought back tea seeds, tea leaves, tea scriptures, tea utensils and tea zen philosophy. Since then, there has been a “tea zen” ceremony in Japan. Later, Japan derived from Chinese tea zen and Chinese tea ceremony and developed into the quintessence of Japan “tea ceremony (sadō)”. The monk “Murata Shuko” was the first advocating cultivation of spirituality with tea as the purpose of practice. “Kaiseki cuisine” is a simple meal prepared for pilgrims and was later regarded as the highest Zen etiquette in Japan. This is quite similar to the “tea ceremony” that emerged from the Jiangnan tea area in China in the 1980s which mainly displayed tea sets, making tea and offering tea.

Chinese tea Zen has another different system. Normally, the temple has a special “tea hall” for studying Buddhism or entertaining believers. The “philosophy hall” is equipped with tea drums. The drum will be beaten when it is time for monks to have tea. There are “tea head” and “tea monk” who are responsible for making tea and serving tea respectively. The name of the tea provided is “monastery tea”, which can be used for Buddha, hospitality, and self-serving. On weekdays, the process of enlightenment for Zen is divided into six stages and required to burning for one stick of incense, having tea once. This is called “tea Zen” which has the purpose to refresh the mind and refresh the mind.

In the “Feng’s Hearsay (Feng Shi Wen Jian Lu)” records “During the regnal year of Emperor Xuanzong of Tang Dynasty, Lingyan Temple in the Tai Mountain had a demon-hunter master initiated the Zen Buddhism…As learning Zen will meditate and forbidden to eat afternoon, so they are allowed to drink tea as nourishing for energy. It had become a custom since then”. In Song Dynasty, the meditation with drinking tea already became the prevailing custom. From the Buddhist classic “Five Lantern Hui Yuan (Wu Deng Hui Yuan)” volume Nine, a monk asked Zen Master Rubao: “What is the monk’s style?” Master replied: “three bowls of tea after meal”. It means that to adjust the spirit and replenish nutrition without violating the precepts, “tea” has naturally become the most suitable drink for sitting meditation.

马来西亚食神-日本-茶道怀石

Kaiseki cuisine begins with Japanese tea ceremony

The Highest Realm of Little Teapot 

In ancient times, there was the term “tea mad” or “tea fascinates”, which meant the person was too obsessed with tea drinking. They were very strict with the water quality, tea variety, tea sets, environment and the cultivation of tea people. The character Miaoyu of Green Lattice Nunnery in the classic of “The Dream of Red Mansion”, the celebrities Zhang Zezhi, Feng Zhengqing, Jingshen Yushi in “Qing Bai Lei Chao · Diet” and the story of Teo Chew nabob and beggars are examples. The story is about a beggar who was a rich man before, but he went bankrupt because addicted to tea sets. Finally, he only had a famous teapot left. Because he was desperate, he had to sell this teapot for three thousand gold but with condition that he had to share the teapot with the buyer, his wealthy friend. Then, the beggar used the money to settle his family. The beggar is unwilling to let go of the teapot because even if the teapot does not contain tea leaves, it can still make tea with a refreshing fragrance. This is why tea people will focus on the obsession of a tea, a pot, and regard it as the “highest realm” of raising a pot.

马来西亚食神-黑泥柑仔標

“Black Sandy Clay Gan Zai Brand Teapot” was produced by the Yixing Old Factory in China in the 1980s. It is an early old teapot. Even the ordinary purple sand teapot, if the same type of tea is brewed over the years, the tea flavour will be absorbed by the sand. So that even the tea leaves was not use to infuse, only by pouring boiling water into it, it will also produce a sweet tea flavor.

The “Tea” different with the another “Tea”

Drinking big bowls of tea (Da Wan Cha 大碗茶) dates back to the Han and Wei and the Six Dynasties. At the beginning, it was mostly thirst-quenching extensive drinking method or for medicinal purposes. In the Tang and Song Dynasties, tea was crushed into powder and add with oil paste and rice flour to make dough cakes. When drinking, it only needs to be crushed and decocted with ginger, green onion, orange peel, mint, jujube, salt, and sesame seeds to form the custom of “tea-eating (Chi Cha 吃茶)”. This kind of “eating tea” is different with the “eating tea” that chewing the dried tea leaves to determine the quality of tea. In the Yuan Dynasty, it was directly decocted with trial-roasted tea leaves. It regarded as “Sencha (Jian Cha 煎茶) ” if without adding seasoning. While “Kissa (Qi Cha 喫茶)” was originally a special name for Japanese teahouses. At the beginning of the Ming Dynasty in China, there was a term of ” (Qi Cha 沏茶)” in which tea was brewed with boiling water, emphasizing that the tea should not be brewed too much.

The Popularity of Tea 

Since China has a vast land and rich resources, people in different regions have different preferences. Because of ethnicity, the custom of drinking is different. For example, the Han people drink light tea, the Tibetan people drink butter tea, Mongolian milk tea, while the regional north mostly prefers scented tea, while the northeastern people like to add sugar to the tea and the northwest to add salt. The southern provinces generally like “green tea” [5]. Fujian admires “Oolong tea” with “Bak Kut Teh (pork rib dish cooked in broth infused with herbs) “, which has long been recorded and moved to Southeast Asia. In addition, Pu’er, Liubao, herbal tea, and chrysanthemum tea that originally is the usual beverage in Guangdong have also begun to drink “black tea” due to the early influence of the West. The Cantonese morning tea originated in the Song and Yuan dynasties and flourished in the Ming and Qing dynasties. It has become a great sight since the 30s. It is all due to the living customs of “three meals and two teas” of the Lingnan people. The morning tea is an important part of Guangdong snacks. “One bowl with two pieces (Yi Zhong Liang Jian 一盅两件)” refers to vernacular of Hong Kong tea culture, meaning “a bowl of tea with two dim sum”. Guangdong Teo Chew pays attention to “Kungfu tea” [5], Hunan has sesame tea, which is the source of “Qibao Lei Tea”. “Tea” resolutely became China’s “national drink”. Later, there was a style of eating tea to accompany dishes and use tea for food. And “tea tasting” can also best express the fine virtues of the Chinese tradition, the spirit of the doctrine of the mean, the courtesy of Minglun, and the way of humility. In Minguo’s essayist Liang Shiqiu’s “Ya She Nostalgia, Recalling the Past”, “The reason why tea is a national quintessence, not only transcends the inherent materiality, enters the spiritual realm and transforms it into a moral and cultivated personality, and has become an important factor in food and folk customs. The part of life has deep historical and educational functions.”

Speaking of the 

Thousand Years Matter

注释

  1. “Tea sets”. Among the pottery, Yixing Purple Sandy Clay tea set is the most suitable. It had risen as early as the early Northern Song Dynasty and became popular in the Ming Dynasty. Due to the high temperature of the pottery firing, the sintering is dense, the body of the pot also hard. Even it is not glazed and present its natural mud color. The texture of the body is delicate. The mud particles form crystals during the firing process. There are invisible pores between the crystals, which does not leak but is breathability. After long-term use, it can absorb tea liquid, accumulate tea flavor and the heat transfer is not fast. If it carry hot tea during the hot day, the tea will not easy to be sour. Zhejiang and Jiangsu are used to brewing tea in purple sandy clay pots or directly use porcelain cups.
    At first, China’s oldest daily tea set was made of metal, gold, silver, copper, iron, tin and other materials. After the rise of ceramic tea sets, metal tea sets including silver utensils gradually be eliminated. After the invention of porcelain, the ceramic tea sets were gradually replaced by porcelain. So it is divided into white porcelain, celadon and black porcelain. In Beijing and the Southwest like to use porcelain-made tea bowls which is the so-called “three-piece”. It consists of a small tea bowl with a big mouth, a small saucer and a bowl cover. The advantage is that (1) The bowl mouth is bigger is more convenient to fill with water, and it can also allow the tea to sink to the bottom. When adding water, the tea leaves can be seen rolling, making it easy to make tea liquid; (2) There is a raised tea cover, the edge of the cover is smaller than the bowl, so it is not easy to slip, which can condense the tea fragrance and used to block the tea foam without sticking to the lips when drinking; (3) The saucer will not burn your hands and prevent the clothes from getting wet by overflowing water; (4) Good heat preservation.
    In Guangdong, Chaozhou, Shantou, and southern Fujian often drink “Kungfu tea”. The tea set needs to be made of Chaozhou mud. Because the soil is soft and the pottery pots made are easier to absorb the fragrant tea. The tea leaves can account for the volume is eighth. After soaking, the tea leaves will rise up and reach the top of the pot to make the proper weight. This is different from the way of drinking tea in other provinces.
    Most of the 28 tea sets listed in Lu Yu’s “The Classic of Tea” are made of bamboo wood. This kind of tea set has no pollution to tea and is harmless to the human body. Therefore, it has been widely welcomed by tea people since ancient times.
    Glass pot is suitable for making scented tea, black tea, green tea, white tea, health tea, etc., with high ornamental and interesting properties.
    Lacquerware tea set was produced in Fujian and Fuzhou in the Qing Dynasty. The natural sumac tree sap is harvested and refined and mixed with the required color materials to make beautiful and eye-catching devices, which are most unsuitable for tea.↩
  2. Scientists have discovered that the “catechins” in green tea can help improve the memory, vocabulary, adaptive behaviors, etc. of patients with Down’s syndrome, and improve cognitive ability. The longer the drinking time, the better the improvement.↩
  3. According to the Qing Dynasty’s “Unofficial History Grand View”, “In Ting, Zhang, and Quan cities of Fujian, the Chaozhou Kungfu tea is the best, and the most refined utensils are Yixing pots, and Wuyi tea variety must be used for tea.” It means that Kungfu tea was popular in the Qing Dynasty and spread in the ancient city of Changting, Zhangzhou, Quanzhou, Xiamen in Fujian and Chaozhou in Guangdong. It began with the development of “tea battle” in the Song Dynasty. “Kung Fu Tea” has four treasures: oven, frying kettle, Mengchen pot, teapot and teacup. When making Kungfu tea, the spring water is the best and charcoal fire is better. Before soaking, use boiling water to pour the teapot first, and then put the tea leaves. It takes up 80% of the pot volume. Fill the pot with water and cover it. Then use boiling water to wet the pot and dry with clothes. Then you may enjoy it. The “tea art” normally taught by tea merchants was originated from tea art of Kungfu tea. Now, due to commercial considerations, the tea art transform into more exquisite. It is necessary to have refined tea sets, an ancient purple sandy clay pot, the portion depending on the number of people to decide whether use four-person pot or eight-person pot.The skill of pouring tea needs to be “high brewing and low pouring”. The “Duke Guan patrols the city (Guan Gong Xun Cheng 关公巡城)” refers to decanting tea into cups lined up in a circle by having the teapot or the gaiwan moving over to and fro the circle while pouring tea in a steady stream into the cups. Later “Han Xin counts his troops (Han Xin Dian Bing 韩信点兵) is to make sure every last drop of tea is extracted from the teapot, point the teapot spout straight down and dip it quickly into each cup. The last few drops are extra concentrated so make sure each cup gets a drop. Firstly, it should be smell the fragarance, observe the liquid colour and get to a sip or sip. ↩