The everyday tea ceremony is just as important as the ones you might participant in for a special occasion. You’re probably asking, “What everyday tea ceremony?” To which I stare at you in shock and disbelief. Well, that’s where we need to start, then: how to make some time for your everyday tea ceremony. And don’t worry, it doesn’t need to be as stylized at Chanoyu or even the more relaxed Korean ceremony (both shown in my previous article here). The whole idea is just to focus on the tea and shut out any of the distractions going on around you.
Let me make a bit of a side note here: this focus doesn’t just work for tea (enhancing your enjoyment and helping you get more out of the whole experience, but is also great for anyone trying to reduce their intake of food for personal reasons. I found that being more focused on every bite made me enjoy it more and feel satisfied sooner. Okay, back to tea.
Keep the Focus on Tea
Since the key here is focus, you have a couple of ways to go:
- Make your everyday tea also your tea ceremony tea – you’ll be amazed at how much more your perception of the flavor and aroma will be; you may even find yourself experimenting with the tea a little, trying it in different ways (iced versus hot, plain versus with flavorings/milk/sweetener).
- Make your everyday tea ceremony about getting away from that everyday tea – forego your usually cuppa for something different; for example, if you like a nice black tea, try a green, oolong, or white.
Elements of Your Everyday Tea Ceremony
Just as with those official tea ceremonies, your everyday tea ceremony will need certain elements:
- A dedicated location – a nook, corner, or even a whole room can be set aside for your personal tea ceremony. Here’s an example.
- A dedicated time – not necessarily the same everyday (that’s often impossible) but a certain time that is set aside (no other tasks going on – just the tea).
- Dedicated teawares – a teacup, teapot, and other teawares that you set aside just for this time; if your tea ceremony uses a Yixing teapot, this will be especially important since these teapots are made of porous zisha clay and should be dedicated to a particular tea type such as green or oolong; if you want to use a gaiwan, make it one that is just for this time as a way to make the event more special; even a ceramic teapot or a steeping mug can be so dedicated (you might have to hide it away from other household members).
Whatever your approach and your reasons, this special tea ceremony will help you get more from your tea, savoring every drop instead of quickly gulping it. I would also recommend a place with no strange aromas and no foods. This is all about the tea. Enjoy!
See more of A.C. Cargill’s articles here.
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