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Chaye Zhoumo / A Tea Weekend

茶叶周末 CHAYE ZHOUMO / A TEA WEEKEND

For us, learning about tea means learning with tea. In the end, it all comes to drinking that stuff!

With our CHAYE ZHOUMO, we will go all the way: three days of diving deep into the leaves of the camellia sinensis, tasting, comparing, and of course exchanging about more than fifty high-end teas to better understand and appreciate this wonderful phenomenon called tea.

We will explore
PU ER SHENG CHA, FENG HUANG DAN CONG, WUYI YAN CHA, SENCHA, LONG JING, BI LUO CHUN, TEA CERAMICS

Focusing on topics such as
QUALITY, TERROIR, AGEING, PRODUCTION STYLES AND CONTEXTS, HISTORY, SENSORY ANALYSIS

Audience
This three-day tasting event is aimed at experienced and/or enthusiastic tea drinkers. More precisely, we assume that you have a basic understanding of tea and a great love and interest in these leaves. However, of course, no one is a pro, each of us has a unique approach to tea and there is no right or wrong. We are here to learn from one another. If you are not sure if this event is for you, please do not hesitate to contact us. We are also running an introductory weekend course in April 2024 covering the basics of tea and its preparation, check it out on the english website of our Tea School.

Body limits
We try to show as much tea as possible so that you can go home with your taste buds satisfied and your head full of new perspectives and impressions. But there is a limit to the intake of both information and liquid and one might reach a point of saturation, beyond which one might not feel comfortable anymore. We try our best to use our time wisely by planning breaks and a reasonable schedule for the tastings. Of course, it is always possible to adjust the rate of consumption.

Language
Should not be a barrier. The course will be held in English to reach the widest possible audience. However, most of us won't be native speakers, so we will have to find a common language anyway. We also speak German and French and translations amongst these languages will be available on an ad hoc basis.

When

8-10 March 2024
Starting Friday 7:00pm
Closing Sunday 4:30pm

 

Where
Länggass-Tee
Laenggassstrasse 47
3012 Bern
Switzerland

How to register

Please send an email to teeschule@laenggasstee.ch with your name and address so we can register you for the event. We will confirm your registration as soon as possible.
Please note: space in our rooms is limited and we may have to close registration if we reach maximum capacity.
If you have any questions or comments about this event, please feel free to email us or call us and ask for Toby!


Costs & Payment
Total costs 480 CHF
This includes all tastings, workshops, and a Japanese lunch.
We will send you an invoice three weeks before the event.
Accommodation and travelling is not included in the programme nor the costs.


Details on the Program
(subject to alterations)

FRIDAY

Get In
You may need to check into your accommodation, have a late lunch or just have some quiet time before the programme starts. To ensure that you enjoy a stress-free arrival, wherever your journey has started, we have set the official start of the Chaye Zhoumo for Friday evening at 19:00. For those arriving earlier on Friday, we will offer two optional activities in the afternoon that you can attend according your preferences.

 

 


Silent Arrival (optional)
The traditional japanese tea room, “Chashitsu”, is a very special place in our teahouse. You can peacefully arrive and enjoy a bowl of maccha in silence, prepared by our Chanoyu practitioners. They are training in the Urasenke way of tea.

Comparing the ageing of Pu Er teas (optional)
Every year since 2014, we have purchased fresh high-end Sheng Pu Er from the best garden of Banpolaozhai in Nannuoshan, Xishuangbanna, Yunnan, China. In 2024, this will amount to ten teas from exactly the same garden, each one different depending on the circumstances each spring and of course the effect on taste and character of storage over the years. A great tasting to learn how Sheng Cha changes over time. The specifics of this sessions are up to you: you choose and prepare any Nannuoshan tea from 2014 to 2023 for you/your group to compare the evolution of ageing.

Official Start (latest arrival)
Once our group is complete, we will enjoy a cup of tea and get to know each other. Our teahouse has many rooms and we will take a short tour of the building and discover our setting for the weekend. Finally, we will have a good night's tea while we present the programme for the upcoming days.

 



SATURDAY

Sensory Analysis
With our senses, we are able to perceive not only tea, but the world. Few things are as complex as the flavour profile of processed Camellia Sinensis leaves. In this session, we will discuss and explore our - not so basic - physical tools for enjoying and evaluating tea. A crash course in sensory analysis to find a common language and differentiate the layers of experience hidden in a single sip.

For the next item, we will split the group, you can choose option A or B

A) Wuyi Yan Cha - Variety, Quality, Style, Ageing, Terroir
Over the years, we have collected a rich assortment of Wuyi Yan Cha of astounding variety, many of which are rare gems. We'll taste the whole range, with a particular focus on different Shui Xian varieties and of course also explore the issues of quality, terroir and ageing.

OR

B) Bi Luo Chun - Single Wok Processing
Every year, we have access to a few batches of Dong Ting Bi Luo Chun. It is 100% handmade, processed wok by wok. We pack each batch individually. This allows us to delve deep into the intricacies of green tea processing. As a consequence, We are able to compare different batches from the same terroir, an exceptional opportunity to experience the relationship between craftsmanship and exceptional gardens.

Lunch (provided by us)

A freshly prepared seasonal japanese meal*: sprouted rice, miso and vegetables prepared in various delicious ways.
The meal is vegan, lactose and gluten-free. Please inform us on allergies when you sign up for the course:)

Long Jing - Tasting Quality
What makes a high- quality green tea? Long Jing is the most prestigious and famous Chinese green tea. Let us explore our applied concept of quality by comparing eleven different Long Jing, from industrial production, small experimental batches to rare, expensive leaves from the original Xi Hu region.

Break
Getting some fresh air in the Uni Pärkli nearby to look at the trees and see if spring has arrived

Feng Huang Dan Cong - Variety, Quality, Style, Ageing, Terroir
Famous for their expressive aromas, the variety of Phoenix teas is astonishing. We will taste across our selection, focusing on the character of the different Shui Xian sub-varieties and the Wudong terroir, as well as on quality and ageing.

SUNDAY

“Bring your own sample” tasting
In our day-to-day work with tea, we try to broaden our horizons by tasting and comparing as many samples as possible. This is where we learn the most. We would like to share this experience with you. Together we will recreate a tasting session, as we do it every day in our shop. This means that the setting is absolutely blind, nobody knows which tea is which. Most importantly, this is not to judge each other's teas, but to celebrate and learn. If you like, you can bring a tea of your choice to compare with one of ours or of other participants and asses its qualities.

Sencha - Saga, Fukuoka, Shizuoka, Iruma
Sencha production in Japan is fairly standardised, resulting in seemingly similar teas. However, differences in terroir and regional processing styles have a huge impact on the final product, resulting in not only fascinating nuances, but altogether different green tea experiences. In this session, we explore four of our favourite producers and their regional take on Sencha, all unique and exceptionally beautiful.

Tea Ceramics - Introduction to Chinese tea ceramics, history, styles
A brief introduction to Chinese tea ceramics, their histories, development and current market. We will talk about Ruyao, Celadon, Dehua, Jingdezhen, Yixing, Nixing, Jianshui. We will explore, how these ceramics affect our tea and our experience. With a special focus on the use of Yixing teapots.

Lunch break (individually)

Pu Er - Laobanzhang, Bohetang, Laoman’e,
It would be an understatement to say that we have an affinity with Sheng Pu Er. We breathe that stuff. Every spring for the past 14 years, we have bought a ridiculous amount of fresh Sheng Pu Er home. By now, our collection contains more than 100 different Sheng Pu Er, mainly single origin Gu Shu Pu Er. Over the years, the relationship and trust with our producers has grown on both sides and we are now able to confidently buy sought-after teas from the most famous terroirs. These teas are certainly expensive, but are they worth their reputation? Let's find out as we delve into the most prestigious gardens of Xishuangbanna.

Ending - A tea in silence
After all the tasting and sharing, we will conclude the weekend with a final Gong Fu Cha of one of the rarest teas in our collection. To enhance the experience, we will create a calm environment, not talking too much, to let the tea unfold undisturbed with full presence.   

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