Talking Tea: Focusing on Taste
Today on Talking Tea we focus on the nuances of flavor,
and how to fully appreciate the taste of tea by engaging all of our
senses. Guiding us through this exploration of tasting is Billy
Dietz, a tea development specialist based in Montreal. We chat with
Billy via Skype as he shares a little of his own remarkable tea
journey and then takes us through two methods of preparing a tea he
selected for this episode, a Muzha Tie Kwan Yin oolong from Taiwan
provided by Naivetea.
We compare the preparation of this tea in the
traditional Chinese covered cup known as a gaiwan with the
professional tasting method known as “cupping”. (In the image here
the gaiwan is in the left foreground, the cupping set to its
right.) Billy explains the purpose of each of these brewing
methods, gives us details on brewing tips in each style and
discusses how these details of preparation affect the taste. We
chat about how the other senses come into play as well – the visual
aspects of the dry and infused leaf and the brewed tea, the aroma,
the tactile sensations of the tea after we sip it, and even how we
breathe before and after taking a sip – how to fully engage with
all of these to allow a fuller discovery of the tea.
Throughout, Billy emphasizes the need for playful
experimentation with our tea, so that our tea drinking becomes an
art of discovery, an opportunity for mindfulness and
You can follow Billy on Twitter and Instagram at
@sirwillotleaf. You can find his blogsite at sirwilliamoftheleaf.com.
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episodes, visit our Facebook page at www.facebook.com/talkingtea.
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Talking Tea is produced and hosted by Ken Cohen.
You can follow Ken on Twitter @Kensvoiceken.
This podcast features music from “Japanese Flowers”
(https://soundcloud.com/mpgiii/japanese-flowers) by mpgiiiBEATS
(https://soundcloud.com/mpgiii) available under a Creative Commons
Attribution 3.0 Unported license
(http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/). Adapted from
Photo courtesy of Billy Dietz.