I spent last weekend at a tea expo in Taichung, Taiwan. To be totally honest, I wasn’t expecting that much from it, but it was spectacular! Here are a few highlights:
* I got to drink aged Liu Bao (a type of “black tea” / “dark tea” from Guangxi, China) for hours. Good Liu Bao is incredibly rare and I’d never had the chance to try it before. Diving into the great stuff (i.e., Liu Bao that has been well-stored since the 1960s) is a great introduction!
* I got to serve tea at a tea table designed by one of Taiwan’s most famous tea masters. It featured antique tea cups floating around the circular table, blossoming tea plants and cherry blossoms, and a crowd of tea lovers who were nothing but pleased to be there.
* I got to check out some jaw-dropping tea ware. For example, there was a tea scoop made of master-smithed silver. The metalsmith had handled this particular scoop each and every day for three years, giving it an unusual, green-violet patina, the likes of which I have never seen.
* I got to meet some wonderful tea people from Taiwan, Malaysia and other areas, making connections which I hope will last for many years to come.
This image is from the day before the water feature was added. It was an elevated, river-like ring that followed the inner circle of the table. When I served tea, I placed each cup on a small, floating tray, which would then flow with the water around the circle. Guests could take a new cup of tea as they pleased, or when they were quick enough to catch it!