This morning we started with breakfast at a restaurant from the Cantonese restaurant chain Jackpot. Actually, we didn’t like it all! The food was not fresh. Because I am writing this blog the day after, I can say that the food was a little disappointing throughout the day. An exception to this was the Maliandao Tea market (马连道茶城) we went to.
In Search of the tea street
It was quite a search to find the tea street. After getting wrong directions from a street vendor, we decided to pick a cab. After a 15 minute drive, we arrived at a street fully packed with tea shops. The taxi driver stopped in front of an enormous building.
Four floors of tea
When we went inside, we were very surprised! Four floors, full with tea! Apparently, the sales people were surprised too. They immediately tried to invite us into their shops to taste the tasty, yellow and brown brews made from the finest tea leafs. We tasted green, black, oolong, flower, Jasmine and pu’er tea.
The tasting is almost like a ritual. The leaves get washed first, one or two times, depending on the type of tea. The little tea cups are washed with steaming hot water and there is a lot of smelling involved.
We had a great time and the Chinese wholesalers too! They were happy to have us. After we bought some tea, they asked us if they could make pictures with us and they even gave us extra tea too! The prices are low by the way. What a great experience.
In the evening, a good friend of Hiu Ying and Jeroen arrived from Hong Kong, where she had some business meetings. Richiko is a Japanese Dutch girl who lives and works (Cathay Pacific Airways 國泰航空) in Australia. We spent the evening in a Japanese restaurant that served a lot of fried food. Around midnight, we went home for a good night sleep in preparation of another great experience (one on a certain wall…).