Beau-tea (茶)



the following link is a ny times slideshow done by Chang W. Lee  which captures life inside a hangzhou tea house beautifully.  the slideshow, more importantly, helps to convey the significance of tea in chinese culture.

ny times slideshow

it is important to source really good green tea to understand its true appeal.  green tea should be loose, not in tea bags, and green, not brownish, greenish, greyish.

in chinese households, tea is often served in mugs where the hot water is poured over the loose tea leaves and allowed to steep for a few minutes.  the chinese will often refer to drinking tea as "eating" tea as you will invariably be eating some of the loose floating tea leaves.