Floating Leaves Tea Home ---Shiuwen's Blog!

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

An Excellent Charcoal Roast Dong Ding: Expansion

In my previous post about my experience with charcoal roast master Mr. Zhan I mentioned a Four Roast Dong Ding. That tea taught me about what a good tea can do 10 months after I first had it.  I purchased that tea in April 2016 and have been loving it to this day.

About two months ago, my tea friends Char of Oolong Owl and Andrew of The Happy Tea Man came to have a Dong Ding session with  me. I tried to show them how a good Traditional Dong Ding not only has good, solid broth and great aftertaste, but also that it has the most amazing "expansion". I normally experience expansion with Cha Qi (tea energy). That day, the Four Roast gave me a wonderful surprise. The expansion this Dong Ding has takes two routes: one is the tea energy, which is super strong, and the other one is texture expansion. I felt it for the first time. Its texture was pushed into my body while the cha qi was happening at the same time. I can't really express how excited I was when that happened! Our friend, Jake of Cloud 9 Photography & Design shot a short video of us. I don't think I completely understood what was happening at the time. I only knew how AWESOME the tea was afterwards.

Two things happened in this Dong Ding Tea session that I absolutely love: friendship and expansion. I love it that tea is very communal. Tea brings people together. Tea allows us to enjoy not only its goodness but also the company that is there. Tea is expansive. Throughout these years learning about tea, I noticed that the right people with the right mind in tea sessions can open and hold a precious space for the tea drinkers. Char, Andrew and Jake are very open-minded people with great taste in tea. They helped to create and hold that precious space with me.

And a good tea is a great teacher! I am still AMAZED at how this Charcoal Roast Dong Ding still teaches me after so many months. When I realized the tea broth in my mouth was expanding into my body, the beauty of it was beyond description and it has deeply touched me. I thought of Mr. Zhan and how he could possibly craft a tea like this. He inspires me! His tea inspires me!

I am grateful and thrilled Mr. Zhan agreed to be interviewed for our Dong Ding Documentary. I look forward to learning more from him and to sharing with you some of his tea stories. We are scheduled to film the documentary in the first two weeks of July. We reached Phase 1 of our fundraising goal, and that is to shoot footage. Thank you all who have supported this project! We are now working on Phase 2 fundraising and we are half way there! We just need a couple of thousand dollars to hire people in our places so that each of our businesses can stay open while we are gone filming. Please consider donating and supporting this Dong Ding Documentary Project. Thank you!

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