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Discovering Gong Fu Tea


When my parents came back to Brazil after vacationing in China for a month, they gave me a Gaiwan and some tea. I didn’t really know how to use it, or how to properly brew the teas they gave me. At the time, I thought I didn’t like those teas. I was brewing like the I was taught to, in a teapot with long brewing time, and then serving on the gaiwan (which I mistook for a tea cup).

Now, many years later, I understood how it was supposed to work. And it is delicious.

I’m fond of little rituals. I enjoy drinking coffee as much as I enjoy preparing it. Lately, I’ve come to think that I have been drinking too much coffee and that maybe I should add more tea in my life. What I want is not to replace coffee with tea but to balance between them. I used to be a tea person before I became a coffee person, so it is a bit like going home.

Upon researching more about tea, I decided that eastern (specially Chinese) style of tea is more suitable for my tastes than western (aka English) style of brewing. I took a deep dive into the Mei Leaf YouTube Channel — which is a tea bar and shop with an awesome tea facts and skill channel — and learned a ton of stuff.

“The greatest realization I had was how wrong I was with my past experiences with a gaiwan and oolong teas. I was doing it all wrong.” — WrongDog, the tea-waster

After watching a ton of videos in that channel, I noticed that their shop is actually at a 25 minutes walk from my flat. OMG! It was destiny! The heavens want me to drink tea! So even though it was 2°C, I wrapped myself in many layers of excitement and walked to their shop.

The shop was full of people (thankfully it was a very large shop and everyone was wearing masks. Also full means about six people, covid changes perspectives). I waited until they were all served and was then greeted by a very helpful human who helped me buying a Gong Fu Tea Solo Kit and many sample packs.

If I enjoy the experience and little rituals involving tea, I plan to slowly upgrade to fancier sets as my taste improves.