14 February 2010

If so Fated, the Brew will Find You

"Tea and people resonate with each other.  If you want good tea, you will find it when you are ready.  Actually, it will find you."

award DD jar                                        (Jar of award-winning Dong Ding from 1975)

My Dong Ding teacher pulled a box off of a high shelf in his house and showed it to me.  I’ve learned that if he’s going to let me drink something, he’ll automatically offer it to me.  If he doesn’t intend to serve it, my requests might instead earn me a lecture about greed.  Or one about asking stupid questions.

I keep my mouth shut as he opens the box and pulls a jar out.  I am salivating already, imagining what a legendary caliber of tea like this one will taste and smell like.  He gently unties the red ribbon on the jar and removes the lid.

Award DD tea
I peer inside and the tea is beautiful.  Loose, ball-like shapes and a medium brown color that reminds me of caramel.  It hasn’t been touched by fire for nearly 35 years.  The tea is alive: it’s earthy, but sweet, bold and energetic.  I snap a few pictures and my teacher smiles and quickly places the lids back on before returning the tea back to its shelf.

“Tea finds a person when that person is ready for it.   A person is ready for it when his heart and mind are clear to understand the nature of the tea water.”

As I glance at the tea placed on the shelf high above me, I feel surprisingly relieved.  How many wondrous brews have I chanced to encounter, and how many more are to come my way?  The treasures of the tea world are vast, and there will be many more opportunities to see and try new things. 

Drink good tea and enrich your life.


  1. I really like your feeling about tea in this post. I just stumbled across it as I was searching for the Dong Ding DIY tea making class around Lugu.
    Sorry - I cant seem to find your email as all the blog details are in Chinese on this computer..
    Are you based in Taiwan or just visit often?
    I've been in Taiwan for 2 months learning as much as I can about tea as I want to share this back home (in Australia).
    I wonder if you have any suggestions or people I may be able to speak to. My email is sarah.cowell.tea@gmail.com
    Kind regards

  2. Sarah, I am unaware of any DIY tea production classes for DD in Lugu. You might be in-between the fall and winter seasons for DD, too. If you haven't already, check out the resources at the main, flagship store of Ten Ren in the Ximen district. It is a 3 or 4 story building, unmistakable. The top floor is a tea resources center that features classes and has the largest selection of tea resources that I've seen in Taiwan. They may be better able to direct you. They offer a wide variety of classes as well, some of which are taught in English.

    Good luck,