In a world where food fads and trends swiftly come and go, Chinese tea has been seeing a slow but quiet resurgence as it finds its way into the buzzy halls of restaurants as well as the hands of those who seek a moment of solace and tranquillity. Kenny Leong reports on its rise.
A pithy Chinese adage asserts that there are seven basic items for daily sustenance: firewood, rice, oil, salt, sauces, vinegar and tea.
Of these, tea exclusively has captivated the imagination of countless writers, poets, painters, and even nobles and emperors, serving as a source of inspiration behind innumerable works and forms of art in Asia and beyond.
So intrinsic is tea to the Chinese way of life, that the development of classical Chinese culture, commerce and trade without this humble drink would be nigh unthinkable. But truth is often stranger than fiction, and a quick peek into Chinese history reveals the curious insight that tea drinking was once regarded as a lowly, laughable custom…