Your Guide to Gongfu Brewing

Your Guide to Gongfu Brewing

What is “gongfu cha”?

Gongfu cha, also known as Kung Fu tea, is a traditional Chinese tea ceremony that involves the preparation and serving of tea in a specific, ritualistic way.

The gongfu cha ceremony is characterized by the use of teapots, Gaiwan, Gongdaobei, tea tray, and cups, careful attention to the quality and preparation of the tea leaves, and the precise pouring and serving of the tea. The ceremony is intended to be a mindful, meditative experience that allows the tea drinker to fully appreciate the flavors and aromas of the tea. It is often performed in a quiet, peaceful setting and can be a social activity, with multiple people participating in the preparation and enjoyment of the tea.

Why does this traditional Chinese tea-brewing method make tea taste better?

There are a few reasons why gongfu cha, or Kung Fu tea, is believed to produce a superior-tasting tea. One reason is the use of small Yixing clay teapots and cups. Yixing clay is a porous, red clay that is found in the Yixing region of China. It is prized for its ability to absorb and retain the flavors of the tea, and Yixing teapots and cups are traditionally used in gongfu cha because they are believed to enhance the flavor of the tea.

Another reason is the attention to detail and the precise preparation of the tea leaves. In gongfu cha, the tea leaves are carefully measured and placed in the teapot, and the water is heated to a specific temperature and poured over the leaves precisely. This helps to extract the maximum flavor and aroma from the tea leaves.

Finally, the ceremony itself is meant to be a mindful, meditative experience, and this can contribute to a more enjoyable and satisfying tea-drinking experience. By taking the time to fully appreciate the flavors and aromas of the tea and to be present at the moment, the tea drinker may be more able to fully enjoy the tea and appreciate its subtleties.

What are the steps to brewing gongfu style? 

Gongfu cha is a traditional Chinese tea ceremony that emphasizes the art of preparing and serving tea. Here is a general outline of how to brew gongfu cha:

Gather your equipment: including a small teapot or a Gaiwan, a fair cup, tea cups, a pitcher, and a tea tray. Warm the teapot and cups by rinsing them with hot water.

Prepare the tea leaves: Measure out the desired amount of tea leaves and place them in the teapot. Some people prefer to pre-rinse the leaves by filling the teapot with hot water, swirling it around to rinse the leaves, and then discarding the water. This helps to remove any dust or impurities from the leaves and can also help to awaken and release the flavors of the tea.

Heat the water: Different teas require different water temperatures for optimal brewing.

Pour the water: Once the water has reached the correct temperature, pour it over the tea leaves in the teapot, using a steady and controlled pouring motion. The water should fully cover the tea leaves and fill the teapot.

Steep the tea: Allow the tea to steep for the recommended amount of time, depending on the type of tea and your personal taste preferences. Some teas, such as oolong and puerh, may be steeped multiple times, with the steeping time decreasing with each subsequent infusion.

Pour and serve the tea: Once it has finished steeping, pour it into the small cups, using a steady and controlled pouring motion. Serve the tea to your guests and enjoy.

It's important to note that the specifics of the gongfu cha ceremony, including the type of tea used, the brewing equipment, and the brewing techniques, can vary significantly. This is just a general guide. You may want to do some additional research or seek guidance from an experienced tea practitioner if you want to learn more about the traditional gongfu cha ceremony.