Saturday’s Combination: Tea and Coffee

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I hardly believe that I was being a bit more productive this weekend. It was all started when I randomly signed myself up for “The Art of Tea” Workshop held by couple days ago and today was the day of the workshop. So, I unusually woke up early in the morning and off to venue at 9 o’clock in the morning (well, it’s quite a record for me since I usually wake up at 12 on weekend haha). The workshop was held in Art:1 Museum and Art Gallery. The gallery reminds me of Selasar Sunaryo in Bandung. Well, no wonder, because later on I was told that the art work in the entrance was made by Mr. Sunaryo. I was pretty sure that there would be a lot of participants in this workshop. I mean, come on, don’t you think it’s cool for us, the youth, to know more about culture and having some relaxing time on the weekend with such delicate smell of tea? Well, I guess I was wrong because there were only TWO participants! And another participant is a middle-aged woman (fortunately with a youth spirit) named Ci Tien. We got warm greetings from Ci Clara, the host for this workshop and she introduced us to our teacher Lao Shi Joe. I thought it was going to be too small for a class but fortunately Ci Clara and Ci Josephine (teacher for another class) join the class, in addition some people from Taichi class also joined the class. First of all, he gave us a brief history about Chinese tea, and basic knowledge of tea-grading. From the brief introduction, I just knew that the more fermented the tea, the lower its grade, and green tea is regarded as the highest grade because it’s non-fermented. After a short introduction about tea, Lao Shi Joe started to demonstrate how to serve the tea. We are pretty lucky because Lao Shi Joe prepared Long Jing Cha or also known as Dragon Well tea for us. FYI, Long Jing Cha is renowned for its high quality and earns the China Famous Tea title.

It was not that difficult to follow Lao Shi Joe instruction for serving Chinese tea. It’s pretty simple as long as we can remember the order from sterilising the pots to pouring the tea into the cups. The hardest part of it is to make an exact measurement of the amount of tea leaves, how much water we should pour, and how many seconds we have to wait until the tea is good enough to serve. After we have our turns to make the tea, we had a deeper discussion about the tea origin and the cultural story behind it. Then, we moved on to the next session: Japanese Tea or Matcha. Matcha, the Japanese tea is a very well known tea in Indonesia, we can find a lot of Matcha menus in appetiser, snacks, desserts, and beverages. It’s also one of the most popular flavour nowadays. But to serve the real Matcha with real Japanese tradition is not a piece of cake! There are three level of Matcha’s thickness depend on when the Matcha is served: as an appetiser, main course accompany, and closing. Different from Chinese tea which use leaves to be poured with warm water, Matcha is not leaves, it’s powder. And to serve it is not just by pouring water and stir it randomly. There are a lot of order we have to obey, even before we can sip the tea, we have to turn the cup 2.5 times clock wise. I admit that I found difficulties in remembering and practising how to serve Matcha.

Another thing about the real Japanese Matcha is: It’s thick and super bitter! If you’re not a huge fan of tea, you’re going to find it too strong. That’s why before we sip our Matcha, Lao Shi Joe gave us small candies. But thanks to Lao Shi Joe, I think I found alternative for coffee. LOL. After Matcha session, we back to Chinese tea session while we have another chit chat. After the class, Lao Shi Joe gave us some tea leaves sample to be brought home. Aw, you’re too sweet, Lao Shi.

Ci Tien, Lao Shi Joe, and Me after the workshop.
Ci Tien, Lao Shi Joe, and Me after the workshop.

After the workshop we had our lunch together. Ci Tien and I explored the art gallery for a moment while waiting the cab for Ci Tien. After that, I continued to the museum gallery (the entrance fee was IDR 75K). Fortunately I was allowed to take picture, so here it is:

Done with the tour, I decided to leave. I bet you know where I was going. Yes, coffee shop! Today I put my choice to Giyanti Coffee in Jalan Surabaya. I have wanted to go there since last year so since I got nothing to do, I ride my car there. It wasn’t hard to decide what coffee I want because black is always my choice. I also ordered a nice apple pie.

Done with coffee and tea? It’s time to pick my Saturday night pal up: Meine Unyu! She works on weekend, so I decided to pick her up in her office instead of have nothing to do in my room. By the way, she works in CNN Indonesia. Isn’t she cool?? Yes, indeed!

CNN Indonesia office

Today was a very long day for me and now, here I am, writing this post in CNN Indonesia office. Haha! Happy Saturday night people with boy/girlfriend(s).


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