Saturday, August 8, 2009

Xi Ke Tea House - 稀客老茶馆

Had an hour or so to kill before meeting up with friends for dinner, and noticed a little teahouse on Middle Xiaojiahe street. It looked new but seemed overgrown with greenery at the same time and I thought the roof deck would have a nice mix of shade and breeze. The deck ended up being occupied but the ground floor was still very pleasant, with stone walls and flooring.

The server opened a fan to present the tea menu. The teas here range from twenty to around a hundred rmb per order, but there are quite a few good selections for Y20. I asked the server to explain the choices and we decided on an Osmanthus Flower Oolong (桂花乌龙).

A standard tea snack offering is one tiny plate of nuts or soybeans. Here they brought out a generous and beautiful assortment of popcorn, crunchy green beans, and fresh fruit.

The next surprise was how the tea was served - one of the servers arrived with a tea set and proceeded to brew the tea gong fu style. She gracefully warmed the utensils, rinsed, steeped, strained, and poured. The tea was gorgeous and floral, especially the first steeping. I only had time to enjoy three steepings before leaving, but am looking forward to returning.


Name: 稀客老茶馆 Address: 肖家河中街 39 号

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