I am by no means a tea expert, I consider myself to be more of a Tea Tourist, someone who likes to travel around trying new tea experiences then sharing them with others. So when my friend and fellow tea tourist Wendy came up to Vancouver from California with her husband Steve I felt it was the perfect opportunity for both of us to have a tea experience in Vancouver. What better place for an authentic tea outing than a visit to the Chinese Tea Shop in China Town! Daniel Lui is the owner and a Chinese tea expert schooled in the Gong Fu Cha method of tea preparation so I new we were in for a real treat. He took the time to ask questions about our tea preferences and then selected a beautiful moon dried white Pu-erh tea for us to try. Daniel explained that this tea was considered cool as compared to a sun dried Pu-erh that is hot and fiery, both Wendy and I prefer floral teas so this was a perfect choice. It was so fresh and delicate, honestly I would not have thought it was a Pu-erh as it had no earthy taste. A really wonderful tea. Then he went on to prepare a wonderful Oolong as this was Wendy’s request. He answered all our questions with the patience only a true tea master would have. The Oolong was different with each infusion, it was so sweet and fragrant then the next infusion it was very perfumed and it got better and fuller each time, unbelievable! Throughout the demonstration Daniel explained why he only uses an Yixing tea pot, it being real clay the tea can breathe, and it being small it concentrates the tea’s flavour. He also explained about rinsing the leaves and genuinely caring for the tea throughout the entire preparation. Gong Fu means the art of doing something well, so by taking the effort and being very dedicated it will result in the ultimate tea experience. Daniel Lui is a true tea expert! I purchased my own Gong Fu Tea set as I was very inspired by this method and its a beautiful souvenir from my tea outing in Vancouver!
Daniel Lui with his lovely tea wares on display
Selecting an Yixing pot
Sharing his knowledge, look at all the pots!
White Pu-erh leaves
the four of us after the demonstration