Re: Green tea in gongfu style?


Some sources say gongfu is only for oolong, some say it's suitable for pu-erh and greens as well. Being new to gongfu myself I've not even had green or pu-erh tea gongfu.
Personally, I prepare my oolongs in yixing pots and greens in anything glazed or glass. I use a teeli strainer for my greens as well. Pu-erh I usually prepare in a large insulated mug and don't remove the leaves. This is dark pu-erh, I haven't figured out what to do with my green pu-erh yet
I do temperatures close to textbook. Any time I've actually boiled the water for green tea preparation I've ended up with bitter tea.
Hope this helps, -ben
Reply to
Ben Snyder
On 03 Sep 2003, Gyorgy Sajo climbed into "rec.food.drink.tea", opened the box of crayons and scribbled the following:
I have attended a gongfu tea tasting where both oolong and green teas were used.
The gentleman performing the ceremony was, in fact, from Taiwan. And while it was an informal ceremony (he was in American casual clothing, and it was in someone's backyard on the patio table next to the grill), it was fascinating to watch the process which he used.
However, when someone asked him about it, he commented that not all green teas are suitable for gongfu. Unfortunately, I do not remember how he explained one knows which teas are suitable.
I'd ask him, but he's moved away.
Derek
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Reply to
Derek

Some sources say that it's best to use a gaiwan when preparing green teas gongfu-style. Preparing a green tea in a Yixing teapot does something to the flavor that I don't like. It could be my imagination, but the flavor just seems to get lost in a Yixing pot. That's why I prefer to use ceramic or glass vessels for preparing green teas.
The most surprising use of a gaiwan (to me anyway) was one I saw on television at a luxury hotel in Singapore; a waiter was pouring tea from a teapot into gaiwans, from which the guests sipped. Apparently gaiwans are used in more ways than have been told to some of us.
N.
Reply to
WNW
After buying a rather expensive teapot at Ten Ren in NYC, I expressed curiousity about one of their fancy Lung Chings. I must have made their A-list that day, because they sat me and my wife down for a tasting of it.
Surprisingly, they made the tea gongfu style, in a standard yixing setup, just as you would an oolong, using lots of leaf. It tasted fine that way.
I wondered if, because they're a Taiwan company and deal in so much oolong, it was just easy for them to brew the green that way. And the tea set was all ready to go, too.
Personally, at home I use a yixing for oolongs and ceramic pot for the greens. I used to think using gaiwans was kind of fussy (the pouring/straining thing), but I'm warming up to them.
Joe
Reply to
Joseph Kubera
Can it be that you used this Yixing pot for other (darker) teas before? As a Yixing is unglazed, it sort of 'adapts' the aroma of the tea for which it used first and most, in fact, it is recommended to have one set of Yixing pottery for each (type of) tea you plan to prepare in it. Also green tea is easier influenced by other aromas than other teas, which can make even a high class green tea taste a little stale and 'flat'.
All the best, Ralf
Reply to
Ralf Schreiner
Thanks for everyone for the comments! It sounds like preparing green in porcelain vessel is (at least slightly) preferable.
In the meantime I have also found some convincing arguments about why to prefer porcelain to gongfu pot:
"Since porcelain and glass loss heat quickly, they are the standard brewing methods for high grade green teas which can get overbrewed with high temperature brewing like Kung Fu Cha."
(Source: chineseteas101.com/glass.htm)
Thanks again, Gyorgy
Reply to
Gyorgy Sajo
snipped-for-privacy@corp.supernews.com9/3/03 16: snipped-for-privacy@hotmail.com
I use the ones with the now famously broken lids to store paper clips and rubber bands. But seriously, if the idea of gungfu is lots of tea, real hot water, and short steeps, I'd shy away from the method with greens anyway. As Neal says, gungfu pots somehow assert something mean onto the tea, and gaiwans work admirably well. I use two gaiwans -- one for brewing and one for drinking -- when I'm sitting in our roof garden amongst the roses. But, I still use temperatures somewhere between 140F and 175F depending on the tea, and the general rule of approximately half as many grams of tea as ounces of water. That's not quite gungfu, it's gaiwanfu. Oh, well. Oh, foo.
Drinking Wild Lily Tea Market's Bai Hao, and listening to Beethoven string quartets, through a horrendous cold.
Michael
Reply to
Michael Plant
Green tea can be prepared in yixing tea pots, and clays such as light yellow clays are generally designed for brewing greener teas. using yellow clayed yixing tea pots to brew darker teas, over time the tea pot will become a little browner, with brown patches, not really sightly.
Reply to
ws
Michael, it's really unimportant, but do you have matching gaiwans for this? I remember being served with such a set overseas, one lidded, one lidless, both with saucers and a tray. But I never seem to see a set sold this way. I guess the deal is to just buy two identical, and reserve the lid from one. Or buy one gaiwan and one drinking cup of the same pattern if possible.
You have a roof garden? Lucky you!
Joe
Reply to
Joseph Kubera

A-list
just
oolong, it
all
greens.
thing),
I first bought what to me seemed a larger-sized gaiwan (holds around 6 fl. oz.). It was a little unwieldy at times, and a couple times the lid slipped while I was pouring out the tea, causing the tea to go all over the table. I now use a smaller gaiwan, which is much easier to manipulate, using just one hand. I've never spilled the tea using it. Sometimes I even brew darker oolongs in it.
N.
Reply to
WNW

Well, I personally believe that for the most part, the idea that a Yixing pot used for one type of tea can *greatly* influence the taste of any tea brewed in it is uncertain. I own one Yixing pot that's over 100 years old, and I can't really tell much difference between tea brewed in it and tea brewed in any of my other, much younger Yixing pots. Could a Yixing pot heavily used for brewing dark oolongs influence the taste of a green tea? Possibly.. but I have ceramic vessels which do a great job for brewing greens (or any other type of tea, for that matter); so I use the Yixing pots only for darker oolongs. I have a whole cabinet full of Yixing pots. On the other hand, I have a clay kyusu, unglazed inside, which I use for brewing almost all of my Japanese green teas, and they always come out tasting great. It might be an interesting experiment sometime to devote a Yixing pot exclusively to green teas over an extended period, then compare the resulting brew to that made in a ceramic vessel.
N.
Reply to
WNW

Now that's interesting -- I have one made of yellow clay. I might give it a try sometime.
N.
Reply to
WNW

Sounds a bit puzzling. Can you eliminate it? Do you (or your sources) mean that the procedure is the same like in a standard gongfu style brewing, the only difference being that the Yixing pot is replaced with a gaiwan? It would make sense, but I always have thought that a Yixing style pot was an essential part of the gongfu, so removing it you can not really call it gongfu any more...
Gyorgy
Reply to
Gyorgy Sajo
*Greatly* is (of course) subjective. I do not like the aroma of my favourite teas being influenced even 'slightly' but thats propably all just in my head. Maybe its also different when the pot is used for brewing all sorts of tea all over the time. Might be a smaller contrast between a Formosa style oolong and a Pouchong than between a Fujian style oolong and about _any_ green tea ;o)
Btw: I could imagine that a Yixing pot being in use for about a hundred years has developed sort of of a closed texture inside, maybe similar to a glazing. But this is just wild speculation.
All the best Ralf
Reply to
Ralf Schreiner
snipped-for-privacy@stud.hum.ku.dk (Gyorgy Sajo) writes:
Living as I do in a tiny apartment, I use a single small (5 oz.) pot for preparing all sorts of oolongs with lots of leaf and short steeps. The pot is glazed and I clean it between uses (not between steeps, of course.) The Gongfu Police haven't knocked on my door yet.
/Lew
--
Lew Perin / perin@acm.org
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Reply to
Lewis Perin

We occasionally get rid of the excessive residual build-up in our Hagi-yaki tea wares by cleaning them with salt. This allows the tea to more easily penetrate the glazing, creating the distinctive crazing Hagi pottery is known for. Is this salt-cleaning ever employed for Yixing?
--crymad
Reply to
crymad
In article ,
[snip]
[snip]
i only use my (unglazed) pot exclusively for oolong. like others, green tea seems too delicate for it. + i only have one pot like that & didn't bother buying few each for a different type of tea.
[snip]
that sounds strange. we visited a tea plantation in China last year. where they served fine dragon well. Our Dr. Tea like many other who've told me emphasized of not using boiling water on green. it was the best dragon well i had. however, hot water was poured from thermos. but i thought it strange that this fine tea was served in glasses! perhaps they didn't have so many fine cups for large group. (that place was very popular) usually in tasting tea in Taiwanese tea shops, we are more picky about the presentation. :-)
but then my friend who's family used to own a tea plantation in Taiwan told me that the way that tastes best to you is the preferred way. :-)
regards,
pam @ home ¤p¬}
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Reply to
Dr. Gee

Regarding the 100-year-old Yixing pot... it's actually very slick and smooth, inside and out. The spout still flows easily.. no clogs.
N.
Reply to
WNW

I've never heard of the salt method being used for Yixing pots, but who knows. I've seen some mention of using a brush or some type of implement to scrape/scrub the build-up away from the inside.
N.
Reply to
WNW

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