There have been wild accusations around the 'net of me being one to spill the beans. To live up to this unsavory reputation, I offer you all a tour of the as-yet unnamed collaboration between The Tea Gallery and The Mandarin's Tea Room.
Somewhere along the way, we noticed that the phrase "The Tea Gallery slash Mandarin's Tea Room" is a "mouthful."
There are still mountains of boxes to be unpacked, but I was invited to visit the new tea room on the twenty-sixth anniversary of my birth.
I like to keep Tim honest - and educate myself - by constantly evaluating his selections. The challenger this time was First Grade Tie Guan Yin '10 from the most recent TeaChat Tasting Event. It compared favorably to Tim's Selected Grade Tie Guan Yin, but we found it to be a slightly different style.
Tim tells us that his esteemed Anxi mentor keeps up a menu of no less than 20 unique TGY teas each year.
The gang are currently evaluating a slate of even more Shui Xian teas for their new menu.
Many readers know that I can't get enough of this tea, and at one point counted 15 unique styles on hand in my personal tea room.
This was another high fired style, but was quite distinct from the 3 Stamp already offered by The Tea Gallery. A sweet, cherry syrup added to the already rich flavors this tea is known for.
This might have passed as the perfect tea for my birthday celebration, but Michael is not one to leave "good enough" alone.
He shocked even Tim by brewing 20g of his 1950's Shui Xian in a pot of roughly 180ml. A fitting gift to someone who can't make tea too strong.
It seems certain that with two driven tea lovers like Michael and Tim challenging one another, we will all benefit from a higher level of tea.
But wait, what are Winnie and Dae up to?
Check back soon!