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I embarked on my tea journey when I studied abroad in China in 2008 and traveled around Taiwan that summer. I'm here to share my experiences and offer my own opinion, advice, and comments on tea.

Monday, September 14, 2009

Cha Qi

My first encounter with Cha Qi occurred when I was sampling The Tea Gallery's Hundred Year Tree. It was a very potent brew indeed, and it had a calming effect on the nerves. Sadly, I was able to grab onto this feeling two out of the four times I brewed...and it's a bit expensive to buy more just to capture something that's by nature elusive and almost mystical in a way. My second encounter, and the subject of this post, was a bit weirder in nature, and it was probably due to the circumstances than the actual tea itself, but I'll see when I polish off the tea later.

This sample, courtesy of WY, is labeled Gu Shu Cha. IIRC, he had bought it at Wuyi Shan when he visited. Now, the direct meaning of the name is simply Ancient Tree Tea, implying that the trees from which this tea was harvested from come from older trees. How much older? I didn't ask WY, and I'm guessing that he probably couldn't give a reliable age(Chinese tea vendors can be a conniving bunch sometimes).

The bottom of the barrel....*sigh*

The dry leaf is pretty roasted, and there's a distinct citrus aroma, kind of sharp, but it reminds me of a nice men's perfume in that kind of citrus-like aroma. the wet leaves had a nice "roasted" aroma with some deep, rich chocolate in the mix there. The initial infusions had a upfront fruitiness with some spiciness that made the tea even more intriguing. I found it very deep in flavor, but not too aromatic...which disappointed me a bit since the dry leaf smelled so delicious.

Now, the actual interesting part of the tasting. About three infusions into the tea, I started noticing that my hands were twitching, and there was a tingling sensation throughout my whole body.

The sandwich would've been this big, if only there I had more slices of bread in my pantry

I hadn't eaten much, so perhaps it was the lack of food and the caffeine rush from the tea; however, six infusions into the tea I was overtaken by a raw urge for food. I wanted to finish the tea, but my primal instincts drove me to the kitchen, where I devoured a five layered sandwich with five different types of meats. While I was eating, my mind was empty and the only thing I was doing was bite, chew, swallow, repeat.

If this was an instance of Cha Qi, than this was one hell of a tea. I'm going to try the tea at some later time...with ample food in my stomach, and seeing if the feeling returns. Even without the Cha Qi though, this was quite a delicious tea, probably my favorite of the Yancha samples WY gave me. *Two Thumbs Up*


Flowers Tea said...

Hello there, this is my first Cha qi encounter, it's always nice to know new variety of tea (well, at least for me :) oh the sandwich is huge :) This is my first visit to your blog, you have so much varieties of tea featured here, and I'm sure to be back to check more of your posts. Thanks a lot.

Anonymous said...


I recently came across this idea about 'Ba Qi'.