So there's this like middle-aged Chinese dude who owns a tea shop near my house, and he only sells like four types of, fairly expensive, tea. And I never really thought of myself as a tea snob before until I bought some and now all other teas taste freakin' nasty.


Except you can't go in an just buy tea; as soon as you walk in your get roped into like a half-hour tea-tasting and gossip session at this special table thing that involves a lot of pouring boiling water all over everything (the table is basically a series of tiered shallow pans with a drain in it, so obviously designed for this).

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Anyway the dude laughs at me now, because I come in and buy what he sells as "rock tea", which AFAICT is some kind of Wuyi oolong. It starts out quite strong and very tannic, and the dude tells me he considers it "man's tea" ("white tea" is "ladies' tea") so he finds it funny that I like it.

Dude loves his tea. And has strong opinions about it. And apparently his wife doesn't drink it at all, which... go figure.

@alis My cousin does this - hang out at the tea shop with the dude having the traditional tea ceremony and eventually buying expensive tea. Although they do this at home after work too for a family chinwag

@herdivineshadow Having done it a few times now, I can definitely see the appeal!

@alis thats how a traditional chinese tea set works! gotta warm up the "table" ๐Ÿ˜Š

@Laisai I figured as much but Iโ€™ve never seen one before! Honestly Iโ€™m pretty into it (and I like the little collection of, like, dragon turtle/etc. figurines the dude pours out the old tea over).

@alis oh and i think it has to do with "washing the tea" to make sure the loose leaf tea is... yummier? cleaner? I'm not very well versed in traditional tea culture unfortunately, my family has a lot of sets and we have family who make tea, but i am a total noob ๐Ÿ˜‚

good tea is good tho! my fave is tie guan ying (iron goddess) ๐Ÿ˜Š but I can't get it here (well, without being suspicious it's possibly fake anyway haha)

what else have you tried/liked?

@Laisai Haha, I know about Iron Goddess tea from reading Guardian (since everyone is always drinking it in that!), but I only realised the other day it was literally "Guanyin tea"; JOURNEY TO THE WEST was one of my, like, original fandoms as a kid and my parents are white hippie pseudo Buddhist types so Guanyin was always my favourite bodhisattva lol. I've never had it but I really want to now!

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