After a good night’s rest on March 17, 2019, woke up and ate a lovely breakfast. After breakfast, we were shuttled to a Tea Tasting Ceremony at the Yangtze River Park in Yibin near the site where two rivers form the Yangtze River.
It was a little drizzly so we got ponchos, but I did not wear one. Since I was one of the VIP’s we got nice close seating to the festivities. There were dance numbers, different stories and myths, water transported by a drone to tea tasting ceremony, and a grand spectacle.
Afterward, I was given a formal invite to speak with tea gardens to sell their tea from China and abroad. This is where I met some Nepali people (fellow vegetarians so I followed them through the buffet) they had a person tell them what was vegetarian and what was not.
Walking to Yangtze River Park for the Tea Tasting Ceremony.
Tasting some tea from the local vendors before the ceremony
There also were a few dance numbers. Below is a picture of the drone carrying water from the Yangtze River to be used in the tea ceremony shown in the second to last picture. The last picture is me and my tea. It was refilled with water several times.
We were given the 5 star treatment by the Chinese government. They used a couple shuttle buses to transport us from the airport to the hotel. Our flight was a popular flight for the World Tea Conference with even the head lady responsible for mine and many other tea leaders trip just two seats back of me. We got to the hotel and had many students trying to help us with our check in, luggage, and room. They were really nice, but I felt a little overwhelm (3 days with only four hours sleep, same clothes for those 3 days, and dealing with a time difference of 13 hours). We each had a personal helper, mine was Micheal. They were students learning English and volunteering helped them with that. We went to our rooms and went down to eat right afterwards because it was late and they wanted to make sure we had supper. So I went down still stinky and a little out of sorts and grab some food. The food was amazing and buffet style (not typical buffet though). I was still out of sorts and had a nice gentleman who could tell I was out of sorts let me sit at his table with his fellow representatives of Bangladesh. They were really kind. Afterwards I went straight to my room to take a bath (see last picture of bathtub). Tried and succeeded in staying up until 9 pm before going to sleep. I wanted to be on Chinese time. Next post continues my journey.
The featured picture is a close up of a really cool bridge across the Yangtze River in Yibin, Sichuan, China.
Well not sure where to start and this trip happened about two months ago. I guess I can say that March 13th I was working my last Badger State Brewery Winter’s Farmers Market and drove down to Chicago that night to take an early flight to China on March 14th. This was the worst place I stayed at the whole trip because it was a musty room, though every other room was great to excellent.
I meet so many nice people and only minor inconveniences during the whole trip. It was truly life changing and wonderful.
A great story I have about Beijing Airport is a few hours before boarding Air China to Yibin I was sitting and an elderly lady with her daughter and her daughter’s baby sat next to me. The elderly lady got up and her daughter sat next to me with her baby. We chatted and she mentioned that she is the one who gets international films for the Chinese people and she was taking her 10-month old baby girl on her first flight. I was also her baby’s first foreigner and the baby would touch me gently and stare at me. She was cute. They were going to the Hong Kong Film Festival and the mother figured it was a short enough flight for the baby. She mentioned going to Cannes, Sundance, Toyko Film Festival, etc…. I told her why I was in China and she took my card. Just one of many lovely moments I had in China, though I wished I got her card.
Please look at the pictures below and the captions and I will continue my story in other blog posts.
This article talks about the health benefits of green tea and how it is important to Chinese and Japanese culture. This article deals with a study in the Journal of Periodontology talking about the green tea’s promotes healthy teeth and gums. The article is really good and pretty thorough though I assume the published study goes in depth with medical terminology. Yet again another great article from the Specialty Tea Institute.
If you are looking for quality Chinese or Japanese green teas I have a nice selection here.
Another great article that the Specialty Tea Institute has sent its certified tea specialists. This one was written by a global company that does emphasize China. Interesting that they showcase matcha, even though matcha type tea started in China around the 6th century, people today really think of Japan for matcha tea. Japan also has the best matcha tea.
Some of the health benefits are anti-aging, eliminating toxins, cancer prevention, weight loss, increasing energy and stamina, calming effect, improving immune functioning, promoting gastric health, lowering cholesterol and blood sugar, and preventing gum disease and osteoporosis. The article goes into detail about each health benefit.
This is good for the Chinese farmers and hope it happens for them. White tea continues to be very popular in China, so customers outside of China will have a hard time finding white tea and it may be pricier too. Today is the first day to traditionally harvest tea in China in the higher altitudes and a few weeks later for lower elevations. To read more please click on the link.
Another great article from the World Tea News. This is great news for Nepal and I am a little surprised other tea origin countries have not done this yet, especially China. China is where white, yellow, green, oolong, purple, black, and pu-erh teas were first made. They deserve some respect for that. China is so remote in some areas that we are still discovering new teas that the Chinese people have been doing sometimes thousands of years.
I like the idea of the high standards like it must be organic for the trademark. Hopefully, people will realize the quality of Nepalese orthodox tea. The orthodox method just means tea done the traditional way, instead of by machines. Nepal is so poor orthodox method is still really viable. If this trademark gets some status to it, Nepal tea will not have to be smuggled into India to be sold as “Darjeeling” tea. Nepal must use the smaller leaf of camelia sinensis sinensis because Darjeeling teas use this leaf and most other teas in the surrounding areas of India use camelia sinensis assamica ( a broader leaf).
I am glad I did not have to drive Monday. Not sure how the roads were, but it did look pretty out the window. It was a little perpetual snowfall throughout the day like a snow globe. Monday was the perfect day to cozy up with a cup of tea and a blanket.
Have a few more events happening. I am doing a tea tasting series at Amery Ale Works. The first one is called Japanese Tea Tasting and will be
I will also be teaching two Tea 101 classes, Tea Health class, and Different Tea Cultures class at 9th Street Wellness Center in Green Bay. It is not until February so check back with the 9th Street Wellness Center events page for my classes.