中國茶簡介

Kamsang Law  羅錦生

kamsanglawIn the olden days, when a teacher admitted a new pupil, the latter had to kneel down in front of a portrait of Confucius and pour tea at the altar to show that he (girls were not admitted to schools then) would study hard and learn Confucius teachings.  

古時候,當老師收受新生時,學生都必須在孔子像前下跪敬茶,並將茶水灑在祭壇前,以誓他(那時女子不能上學)將發奮學習並遵循儒家教導。 

 

 

English

 

The origin of the word ‘tea’ is the pronunciation in the Fujian (a province on the coast of China) dialect of the Chinese character ‘cha’ which means tea. The Chinese has been drinking tea since time immemorial and has been exporting tea to the rest of the world for over one thousand years. It was introduced into Europe in the seventeenth century and has become a very popular drink ever since.

According to legend, tea was first discovered and used as a medicinal herb by Yan-Di (Emperor Yan), one of the three ‘emperors’ in ancient China, about 4,600 years ago.  Written records have it that cultivation of tea started in China about 3,000 years ago. At that time, the Chinese character of ‘cha’ had not been created and instead another Chinese character ‘tu’ was used to represent tea. The character ‘cha’ was first used in the Tang Dynasty when the famous tea connoisseur, Lu Yu, wrote the ‘Tea Treatise’ and changed the character for tea from ‘tu’ to ‘cha’.

Before the Tang Dynasty (618 - 907) in China, only people in the southern part of the country drank tea. Drinking tea became a wide spread pastime throughout the whole country in the Tang Dynasty and it even spread to Tibet, Mongolia and other neighbouring regions. It became even more popular in the Ming Dynasty (1368 - 1644) when new methods of processing tea leaves were developed and new utensils for preparing and drinking tea were made.

Health effects of tea

There are hundreds of chemical compounds in tea leaves. Those which are of benefits to or may affect human health are amino acids, flavonoides, catechins, vitamins (C, E and K), polysaccharides, fluoride and caffeine. It is generally believed that drinking tea in moderate quantity will improve one’s mental function, improve eyesight, strengthen teeth, increase immunity against intestinal disorders, and protect body cells from oxidation.

Types of tea

If tea is categorized according to the size of tea leaves, tea can be classified as large-leave tea, medium-leave tea and small-leave tea. Tea can also be classified according to the shape of the tea leaves; under this classification, tea is classified as long-leave tea, round-leave tea and willow-shape-leave tea.

Tea is also classified according to the method the leaves are processed after they have been picked and as such, tea can be classified as green tea, black tea, white tea, wulong tea, yellow tea and flower tea.

Green Tea (Lu Cha)

After tea leaves have been picked, they undergo a process which is unique to the processing of Chinese tea. It is called ‘sha qing’ (kill green). Under this process, tea leaves are placed in a large pan and heated up to 70 degrees centigrade to neutralize the enzyme in the tea leaves. If the temperature is below 70 degrees, the enzyme will be activated and turn the tea leaves red and damage the quality of the tea leaves. If the temperature is higher than 70 degrees, the leaves, especially the buds and young leaves, will be burnt and produce an unpleasant smell.  During the ‘sha qing’ process, the pan should first be covered for two to three minutes after which the lid is removed and the whole pan is shaken and tossed to stir and mix up the leaves.

The leaves are then taken for the ‘rolling’ process under which the leaves are pressed, twisted and kneaded in a pressing drum to break the tissues of the leaves and form the leaves into strips along the main vein. During this process, some sap exudes from the leaves. This process should last for about 20 to 25 minutes, depending on the maturity and tenderness of the leaves or buds and the size of the drum.

Green tea does not go through the process of enzymatic oxidation; this process is usually called fermentation in China.

After the ‘rolling’ process, the tea leaves stick together and form lumps as big as fists. They are transferred to another machine to be broken up and the leaves are sifted according to pre-determined sizes and grades.

Such tea leaves are further processed in one of the following ways:

a. Steaming – This method was widely practised in the Tang and Song (960 – 1279) Dynasties and became obsolete during the Ming Dynasty. However, this method was transferred to Japan where it remains the dominant method of processing tea.
b. Pan-frying – This method started in the later Song Dynasty and has been the most common method of processing tea. The leaves remain greenish with a strong fragrance and the taste is mellow. More popular pan-fried green teas are Mei (Eyebrow), Zhu (Pearl), Longjing (Dragon Well), Biluochun (Jade Shell).
c. Roasting – Roasted green tea leaves do not look as firm and bright as the pan-fried leaves, but they are unbroken. They are brightly green and the tea infusion tastes mellow with a refreshing aroma. The more popular roasted green tea is Huangshan Maofeng (Yellow Mountain Hairy Down), and Taiping Hou Kui (Taiping County Monkey King) etc.
d. Sun-drying – Tea leaves so dried are not as fragrant as other types of green tea leaves and its infusion is yellowish. Most of sun-dried green tea is used as raw materials for making tea blocks.

Black Tea (Hong [red] Cha)

After the tea leaves have withered, they become soft with less water content. They are then pressed, twisted and kneaded in a machine so that the tissues of the leaves become torn and the leaves curl into strips. At the same time, the leaves emit some sap which sticks to the surface of the leaves.

The tea leaves are then placed in a fermentation tray to go through the enzymatic oxidation or fermentation (usually so called in China) process under which the chlorophyll in the leaves breaks down and tannins are released. The room provided for the fermentation process is kept at a temperature from 25 to 30 degrees centigrade and the humidity at over 90%. After the fermentation process, the leaves turn reddish and are then roasted at an appropriate temperature, depending on the type of tea leaves.

Black tea produced in China includes whole-leave black tea and broken-leave black tea whereas black tea produced in other places is only broken-leave tea. Leaves for producing broken-leave black tea are cut into small pieces by machine after they go through the fermentation process and roasted to dry. Very often, such broken black tea leaves are fed into tea bags for convenient consumption.

Whole-leave black tea produced in China is called Gongfu Black Tea and the processed tea leaves are firm, slim and curly, and the leaves are whole leaves. They are normally named after the places where they are produced, for example, Qihong of Qimen (Anhui Province), Black tea from Yunnan Province, Yinghong from Yingde (Guangdong Province) etc.

Zhenghong from Zhengshan (Fujian Province) belongs to Small-Leave black tea category. The leaves are dark and glittery and the infusion tastes mellow and rich.

White Tea (Bai Cha)

White tea undergoes the semi-fermentation process and its main production areas include Fujian and Zhejiang Provinces in China. The leaves are mainly leave buds with an abundance of white hair. After the leaves have withered until they are 70% to 80% dry, they are not rolled or pan-fried but are roasted dry.

The more popular white teas produced in China include Baihao Yinzhen (Silver Needle with White Down), Baimudan (White Peony) and Shoumei (White Eyebrows).

Wulong Tea (Wulong Cha)

Wulong tea originates in Fujian and Guangdong Provinces. The leaves picked for producing wulong tea are mainly mature leaves. The picked leaves wither either in the sun or with heat; they are then placed in a stirring machine for stirring so that the edges of the leaves are broken and oxidize and the colour turns reddish. At the same time, fermentation takes place. Before the leaves go through the complete fermentation process (half fermentation), the leaves are pan-fried, then put into a rolling machine for rolling so that the tissues of the leaves are broken and the flat leaves are rolled into strips. Sap is also emitted from the leaves and sticks onto the surface of the leaves. After the rolling process, the leaves stick together into lumps which must be broken up and then roasted. Wulong tea’s fragrance is fruity and flowery, and it tastes rich and refreshing.

The more popular wulong teas include Wuyi Yan Cha (Rock Tea from Mount Wuyi), Tie Guanyin (Iron Goddess of Mercy), Huang Jin Gui (Gold Laurel), Shuixian (Narcissus), Fenghuang Dancong (Phoenix Wulong), Pauzhong (Taiwan Wulong) etc.

Yellow Tea (Huang Cha)

There are two types of yellow tea: large yellow tea and small yellow tea. Yellow tea differs from the other types of tea in that its leaves are yellow and the tea infusion is also yellow. Its production process includes the following steps:

a) ‘Sha qing’ (see description under Green tea above),
b) ‘Menhuang (fried in a covered pan so that the leaves turn yellow), and   
c) Roast.

The ‘stirring and rolling’ step is not usually required for producing yellow tea but for the famous Beigang Maojian (North Port Hair Point), Luyuan Maojian (Deer Park Hair Point), the leaves are rolled and stirred before the ‘menhuang’ step.

The more popular yellow teas include Junshan Yinzhen (Sovereign Mount Silver Needle), MengDin Huangya (Peak of Mount Meng Yellow Bud), Pingyang Huangtang (Pingyang Yellow Infusion) etc.

Dark Tea (Hei [black] Cha)

The Chinese name for dark tea is really ‘black tea’. The tea leaves for making dark tea are from tea trees with large leaves. As mature leaves are used for making dark tea and as their fermentation process takes longer than other tea leaves to complete, their colour is near black or dark brown, hence the name. The taste of dark tea is rich and mellow and can be brewed up to ten times.

Dark tea is a very popular drink amongst the ethnic minorities in China but pu’er tea which is produced in Yunnan, Sichuan, Hunan and Guandong has become very popular with people in Guangdong, Taiwan and South-east Asia.

Dark tea goes through the ‘sha qing’ stage as does green tea but when the leaves are being dried, the pans are covered. The leaves are then rubbed and rolled until the tissues break down and the leaves are formed into strips along the main vein. The leaves are then spread out for drying in the sun or roasted until they are about 90% dry. The dried leaves are then compressed softly to form piles and water is sprayed onto then. They are left to ferment until the leaves turn dark brown and produce a rich aroma. The leaves lumps are then dried in the sun and then broken up and the leaves are sifted according to grades.

Pu’er tea leaves can also be made into tea bricks or cakes during the fermentation stage for subsequent marketing.

Flower Tea (Hua Cha)

Flower tea is produced by fusing tea leaves and scented flowers to form an integrated product. Tea leaves are porous and have a high propensity to absorb both moisture and scent. Usually, roasted green tea is used to blend with selected flowers to produce flower tea but sometimes wulong and to a lesser extent black tea are also used for this purpose.

Before the roasted tea leaves are mixed with flowers, the moisture content should not exceed 4%. The flowers selected for blending should be in blossom as their fragrance reaches its peak at this point. After the tea leaves and flowers have been mixed, its temperature will rise as a result of fermentation. When the temperature reaches a certain level, the ‘rick’ should be stirred and spread out so as to lower the temperature and to allow the leaves and flowers to ‘breathe’ again. This process may be repeated.

The tea leaves are then separated from the flowers by sifts and roasted. In order to enhance the aroma of the ‘flower tea’, a small quantity of fresh flowers can be added to the ‘processed tea leaves’ but the new mixture need not be roasted again. After the mixture has dried, it is ready for consumption.

The more popular flower teas are jasmine, osmanthus, white orchid, rose etc.

How to brew Chinese tea

It is the usual practice to produce several infusions from the same tea leaves by refilling the teapot. In order to brew an enjoyable ‘cuppa’, we should take into consideration the following:

a. Quantity of tea leaves

There is no hard and fast rule dictating the exact quantity of leaves required for making tea. This depends on the type of tea being prepared, size of the teapot, and one’s habit and taste. Elderly people tend to find stronger teas more enjoyable and they use more leaves in a brew. On the other hand, most young people prefer lighter tea and fewer tea leaves are used. As a rule of thumb, if we brew tea in a cup, we put three grams of tea leaves in about 150 cc of water. For pu’er, we need to increase the quantity to between five to ten grams for the same quantity of water. If we use a teapot, we would have to put more tea in the pot, depending on our taste; however, the following is provided as a guide:

Type of tea          Quantity of leaves

Pu’er and Liuan    1/5 of teapot
Green tea            1/5 of teapot
Wulong               1/3 of teapot
White tea            1/3 of teapot
Black tea             1/5 of teapot
Flower tea           1/5 of teapot

b. Temperature of water and brewing time

The temperature of the water used for brewing tea depends on the type of tea being brewed. Although one may brew tea in a cup, this is not an ideal way of preparing tea. However, if there is no teapot available or if this is preferred for convenience sake, one way to improve the quality of the infusion is to pour a small quantity of boiling water into the cup to cover all the tea leaves, wait for about one minute and then add more boiling water to the cup until it is 80% full. When about two-thirds of the infusion has been consumed, more boiling water may be added to the cup. If the tea is consumed in this manner, the concentration of the infusion after each refilling is maintained at more or less the same level.

Normally a teapot is used to brew tea. The temperature and brewing time after each refilling for the various teas are as follows. Again, this can be varied to suit individual tastes.

Type of tea    Water temperature and brewing time

Pu’er and Liuan 
Boiling water – 15 seconds for 1st and 2nd brews, 1 minute for 3rd to 5th brews, 3 minutes for 6th brew and 5 minutes for 7th brew

Green tea 
Boiled water at 85 degrees centigrade – 1 minute for 1st and 2nd brews and 4 minutes for 3rd to 5th brews

Wulong
Boiling water – 10 seconds for 1st and 2nd brews, 30 seconds for 3rd brew, and 1.5 minutes for 4th and 5th brews

White tea    
Boiled water at 90 degrees centigrade – 15 seconds for 1st and 2nd and brews, 30 seconds for 3rd and 4th brews and 1 minute for 5th brew

Black tea    
Boiled water at 90 degrees centigrade – 1 minute for 1st and 2nd brews, 1.5 minutes for 3rd and 4th brews and 3 minutes for 5th brew

When water is poured into a teapot, the kettle should be held high so that the water stream can penetrate into the tea leaves inside the teapot. On the other hand, when the infusion is poured from the teapot to cups, the teapot should be held as near to the cups as possible so as not to lose the tea’s flavour and taste.

Teapot

While China is famous for producing porcelain products such as crockery including teapots, most tea connoisseurs prefer teapots made of Yixing (a county in Jiangsu Province) purple clay. Yixing purple clay can absorb and retain fragrance better than other clays. After a Yixing teapot has been used for some time, the tea brewed in it produces a stronger fragrance. Because of the absorbent nature of Yixing purple clay, tea connoisseurs follow a strict practice which is: a teapot is devoted to brew only one type of tea. A Yixing teapot that has been used to brew black tea should not be used to make wulong tea otherwise one will not get the subtlety of the flavour, taste and fragrance peculiar to wulong.

Social functions of tea-drinking in China

While drinking tea quenches thirst and provides enjoyment for the taste buds, some customs have been developed over the years in connection with this activity. According to Confucius training, people should respect those who are senior to them in the family network as well as in age, those who hold senior positions in work, and  teachers (This must be the envy of members of the teaching profession in the Western world). Therefore as a sign of respect, people offer tea to their parents on Chinese New Year Day and on their parents’ birthdays. For the more traditional families, children kneel down and kowtow to their parents on these two important days and then present cups of tea to their parents who should give their children red packets containing some money (which in Chinese is called ‘lishi’ – lucky money).

To say ‘thank you’ to one’s parents for bringing one up, the tradition is that in a wedding, the bride and bridegroom kneel down in front of their parents and offer them tea in tea cups. Again, after the parents have sipped some tea, they give the newly-wed red packets which are supposed to bring the new couple good luck.

In the olden days, when a teacher admitted a new pupil, the latter had to kneel down in front of a portrait of Confucius and pour tea at the altar to show that he (girls were not admitted to schools then) would study hard and learn Confucius teachings. He would also present a cup of tea to his teacher. The same ceremony is followed when one wishes to learn martial arts from a martial arts instructor. The student had to kneel down and present a cup of tea to his teacher.

Tea is sometimes offered on occasions of an entirely different nature. When one has done something wrong and wishes to make an apology to the offended, one invites the latter to a meeting and offers tea to him/her. If the tea is drunk, this shows that the apology is accepted. Refusal to drink the tea means that the one making the apology is not forgiven.

When a family or a group of people are having a meal, it is normal practice for those junior in the family or in the social hierarchy to pour tea for those who are senior.   

 

繁體文本

 

“茶”這個字的發音最初源於福建(中國一個沿海省份)方言。中國人不知從何時起就開始有飲茶的習俗,並在幾千年前就向世界各地輸出茶葉。茶葉在十七世紀輸送到歐洲後即成為一種廣受歡迎的飲品。

據傳說,約四千六百年以前,中國遠古三大皇帝之一的炎帝第一個發現了茶並將其作為草藥應用。據書面記錄,約三千年前起,中國開始茶葉種植。那時,中國文字裏尚沒有“茶”字,都是用“荼”字來表示。“茶”字在唐代著名 “茶聖”陸羽撰寫《茶經》時第一次出現,他將“荼”字轉變為“茶”字。

在中國唐朝(西元年618年至907年)以前,只有南方人有飲茶的習慣。唐朝期間,飲茶文化得以廣泛傳播,遠及西藏、蒙古和周邊地區。到明朝(西元1368年至1644年),隨著新的茶葉加工技術和新的泡茶及飲茶器具的出現,茶文化更為流傳。

茶的健康效果

茶葉含有幾百種化學物質成分,其中有利於或者可促進人體健康的成分包括氨基酸、類黃酮、茶多酚、各類維生素(C、E和K)、脂多糖、氟化物和咖啡因。人們都相信飲茶適度會提神醒腦,提高視力,堅固牙齒,增強對腸道疾病的免疫能力,並防止身體細胞氧化。

茶的種類

如果按茶葉的大小來劃分種類,茶可以分為大葉茶、中葉茶和小葉茶。若按茶葉的形狀,則可劃分為長葉茶、圓葉茶和柳葉茶。

另外,茶還可以按茶葉採摘後的加工方式來劃分種類,即我們通常所說的綠茶、红茶,白茶、烏龍茶、黃茶和花茶。

綠茶

茶葉採摘後,經過獨特的處理製作而成,這個工序叫做“殺青”。殺青的過程就是將茶葉置於大鍋內,加熱至70攝氏度,以中和鮮葉中的酶活性。如果溫度低於70攝氏度,酶活性會促使茶葉氧化變紅,從而影響茶葉的質量。如果溫度高於70攝氏度,茶葉就會被燒焦並產生難聞的味道,特別是芽葉和嫩葉。在殺青過程中,大鍋應先加蓋2至3分鐘後再揭開,將炒鍋中的茶葉進行抖動和拋轉,以混合均勻。

之後,茶葉加工進入“揉撚”工序,即將茶葉置於揉撚機中進行擠壓,扭轉和搓揉,使葉片細胞組織受損,將茶葉沿葉脈加工成條状。加工同時,有些葉汁會滲出。根據茶葉或芽葉的成熟度和柔軟性,以及揉撚機的尺寸,揉撚過程大約持續20到25分鐘。

綠茶是沒有經過酶促性氧化處理,也就是中國所說的發酵處理。

“揉撚”工序之後,茶葉會粘合在一起,形成拳頭大小的茶團。將揉撚好的茶團轉移至另外一個機器打散,根據預定好的尺寸和等級將茶葉篩選出來。

篩選出來的茶葉再通過下列某一方法進行進一步加工:

1. 蒸 - 這種方法在唐宋時期(西元960年至1279年)廣為運用,到明朝,就變得陳舊落後了。然而這一方法流傳到日本後,一直被日本作為主要製茶方法沿用至今。
2. 炒 - 這種方法始於晚宋時期,並成為最普遍的茶葉加工方法。茶葉保持青綠,氣味芳香,味道醇厚。知名的炒製綠茶有眉茶、珠茶、龍井和碧螺春。
3. 烘 - 烘製綠茶的茶葉看起來不像炒製茶葉那麼堅挺和光亮,但也沒有破碎。通過這種方法加工過的茶葉顏色泛綠,味道醇厚,香氣撲鼻。知名的烘製茶葉有黃山毛峰和太平猴魁等。
4. 曬 - 用這方法曬乾的茶葉,不如其他方法製作的茶葉那麼香,葉質泛黃。大多數曬制的茶葉是用於製作茶餅的原料。

紅茶

茶葉萎凋後變軟,水分變少。將茶葉放入揉撚機進行擠壓、扭轉和搓揉,以使葉片細胞組織受損後搓捲成條形。同時滲出的一些葉汁會粘在茶葉表面。

然後,將茶葉放入發酵盤進行酶促性氧化或者發酵(中國通常叫法)。此工序會破壞葉片中的葉綠素,釋放單寧酸。進行發酵處理的房間控制在25到30攝氏度,濕度控制在90%以上。發酵處理後,茶葉變紅,根據茶葉的種類,將茶葉置於適當的溫度下烘乾。

中國生產的紅茶包括整葉紅茶和碎葉紅茶。用於製作碎葉紅茶的茶葉在發酵和乾燥處理過程中就被機器切碎。通常碎葉紅茶會被加工成茶包,便於飲用。

中國產整葉紅茶被稱為工夫紅茶,加工過的茶葉具有堅挺、纖細和卷曲的特點,葉片保持完整。紅茶一般根據產地來命名,例如,安徽省祁門產紅茶叫祁紅,雲南省產紅茶叫滇紅,廣東省英德產紅茶叫英紅,等等。而福建省正山產的正紅屬於小葉紅茶,茶葉黑而富有亮澤,味道醇厚濃郁。

白茶

白茶是經過半發酵處理而成,主要產地在中國福建和浙江。茶葉主要選取帶有白毫的芽葉。茶葉萎凋至喪失70%到80%的水分,不需翻轉或翻炒處理,但要烘乾。

中國知名白茶包括白毫銀針、白牡丹和壽眉。

烏龍茶

烏龍茶起源於福建和廣東兩省,主要是採摘老的茶葉來製作。採摘的茶葉通過日曬或加熱萎凋後,置於攪拌機內進行攪拌,使茶葉邊緣細胞受損並氧化,茶葉變紅。與此同時,茶葉開始發酵。在茶葉完全發酵之前,即半發酵狀態時,將茶葉進行翻炒,之後放入揉撚機內使葉片細胞組織受損,並將平整的茶葉搓捲成條狀。滲出的葉汁會粘在茶葉表面。經過揉撚過程之後,茶葉會粘在一起成團狀,需打散之後再行乾燥。烏龍茶的香氣帶有水果香和花香,味道濃而清新。

知名的烏龍茶有武夷岩茶、鐵觀音、黃金桂、水仙茶、鳳凰單叢茶和臺灣包種茶等。

黃茶

黃茶有兩種:大葉黃茶和小葉黃茶。黃茶區別於其他茶種的地方在於其茶葉顏色為黃色,沖泡出來的茶湯也是黃色。黃茶的製作工序如下:
1. “殺青”(詳見綠茶章節)
2. “燜黃”(在加蓋的鍋內加熱,使茶葉變黃)
3. 乾燥

黃茶製作一般不需要“揉撚”工序,但是也有一些像北港毛尖和鹿苑毛尖等黃茶,在“燜黃”工序前進行揉撚了。

知名黃茶有君山銀針,蒙頂黃芽,平陽黃湯等。

黑茶

黑茶是採用大葉茶樹上的茶葉製作的。因為製作黑茶的茶葉較老,發酵過程比別的茶葉需要的時間更長,茶葉的顏色接近黑色或深棕色,因而叫做黑茶。黑茶味道濃郁,醇厚,可以反復沖泡達十次。

黑茶在中國少數民族中飲用甚廣。而在雲南、四川、湖南和廣東產的普洱茶卻在廣東、臺灣和東南亞地區很受歡迎。

黑茶像綠茶一樣經過“殺青”,但是在茶葉烘乾時,烤盤要加蓋進行。然後茶葉經過搓揉和翻炒,使葉片細胞組織破損,將茶葉沿葉脈捲成條狀,然後將茶葉平攤,通過日曬或烘烤至九成乾。將乾燥的茶葉輕輕擠壓成堆,灑上水,使之發酵,直到茶葉顏色變黑並散發出濃香為止。將茶葉堆曬乾後打散,按茶葉大小篩選成不同等級。

普洱茶茶葉還可以在發酵過程中被製作成茶磚或茶餅,以滿足不同市場需要。

花茶

花茶是以某種茶坯和能夠吐香的鮮花一起製作而成的茶葉。茶葉組織結構疏鬆,對濕氣和香氣有很強的吸附力。一般以烘製綠茶為茶坯和吐香的鮮花拌和來製作花茶,但有時也用烏龍茶,且少數情況下也用紅茶來做茶坯。

在烘製茶葉與鮮花混合之前,茶葉的含水量不能超過4%。鮮花要選用開花的花朵,因為這時候的花朵吐香能力達到高峰。茶和花拌和之後,由於發酵作用溫度會升高。當溫度達到一定程度,茶堆需要翻拌通風散熱,以降低堆溫,使茶葉和鮮花可以透換新鮮空氣。這一工序可以重複多次。

之後,通過篩子將茶葉與鮮花分離開來後烘乾。為增加花茶的香味,可以往烘乾的茶葉中加入少量的鮮花後拌勻,但無須再行烘乾。待花茶乾透,即可食用。

知名花茶包括茉莉花茶、桂花茶、白玉蘭花茶、玫瑰花茶等。

如何沖泡中國茶

泡茶時,同一壺茶可泡數次。往茶壺續茶可使同種茶葉產生不同的味道。要沖泡一壺令人回味無窮的茶,必須要考慮到下列因素:

1. 茶葉的量

泡茶到底需要放多少茶葉是沒有嚴格標準的,都是根據茶的種類、茶壺大小和個人的習慣和口味喜好來決定。老年人偏好濃一點的茶,泡茶時可多放一些茶葉。相反,年輕人大多喜歡淡一些的茶,則可少放一些茶葉。據概測法,要冲泡一杯茶,一般放3克茶葉,加150毫升水。普洱茶則要加量,同量的水要加入5到10克茶葉。如使用茶壺沖泡,就必須根據口感來添加茶葉。以下僅供參考指導:

茶的種類             茶葉量

普洱茶和六安茶    1/5 茶壶
綠茶                  1/5茶壶
烏龍茶               1/3茶壶
白茶                  1/3茶壶
紅茶                  1/5茶壶
花茶                  1/5茶壶

2. 泡茶的水溫和時間

泡茶的水溫要根據茶的種類。雖然用茶杯來泡茶並不是很理想,但是,如果沒有茶壺,或者為圖方便,有一個方法可以提高用茶杯泡茶的質量,就是先往杯中倒入少量沸水,剛剛沒過茶葉即可,等待1分鐘左右,再加沸水至八分滿。在喝掉三分之二的茶湯後,可以再往杯中續沸水。通過此法,每次續水後茶湯的濃度都會保持相當。

人們一般會用茶壺來泡茶。通常,不同種類的茶在每次續水後需要掌握好的水溫和沖泡時間如下。但這並非絕對,可據個人口味靈活調節。

茶的種類                水溫和沖泡時間

普洱茶和六安茶       沸水 – 第一次和第二次沖泡時間為15秒,第三次到第五次為1分鐘,第六次為3分鐘,第七次為5分鐘。
綠茶                     85度開水 – 第一次和第二次沖泡時間為1分鐘,第三次到第五次為4分鐘。
烏龍茶                  沸水 – 第一次和第二次沖泡時間為10秒,第三次為30秒,第四次和第五次為1分半鐘。
白茶                     90度開水 – 第一次和第二次沖泡時間為15秒,第三次和第四次為30秒,第五次為1分鐘。
紅茶                     90度開水 – 第一次和第二次沖泡時間為1分鐘,第三次和第四次為1分半鍾,第五次為3分鐘。

往茶壺內注水時,開水壺必須提高一點,以防止水蒸氣滲入茶葉中。而將茶壺中泡好的茶湯倒入茶杯時,茶壺離茶杯越近越好,以免散失茶的味道和茶香。

茶壺

中國產陶瓷聞名於世,其中包括諸如茶壺的陶器。大多數茶道高人偏好用江蘇宜興紫砂製作的茶壺。與其他陶土材料相比,宜興紫砂可以更好地吸收和保持香味。茶葉放入宜興紫砂壺後沖泡一段時間後,茶葉會產生更濃的香氣。因為宜興紫砂有天然吸收功能,茶道高人都嚴格遵循“專壺專用”(一個茶壺只泡一種茶)。用來沖泡紅茶的紫砂壺就不能用來沖泡烏龍茶,否則飲茶的人就沒法品嘗到紅茶在味道、口感和香味上有別於烏龍茶的微妙之處。

中國飲茶的社交禮儀

飲茶可以解渴,並讓人可以享受品茶的樂趣,但飲茶的習俗隨著年代的變遷發生了變化。根據儒家教導,人們應該尊敬家庭長輩或其他年長之人,職位高的人,還有老師(這是在西方社會中令從事教育職業的人羡慕的地方)。所以,為了表示尊敬,人們會在中國新年之日或者父母生日當天敬茶給父母。有些更為傳統的家庭裏,小孩必須在這兩個重要日子給父母下跪叩頭,並給父母各敬上一杯茶,父母則發會給小孩裝了錢的紅包(也叫利是)。

如果想對父母表示感謝他們養育之恩,傳統上是在舉行婚禮時,新郎新娘要一起跪在父母面前,給他們各敬一杯茶。父母接過飲一口茶之後,會發給新婚夫婦紅包,希望帶給他們好運。

古時候,當老師收受新生時,學生都必須在孔子像前下跪敬茶,並將茶水灑在祭壇前,以誓他(那時女子不能上學)將發奮學習並遵循儒家教導。學生也要向老師敬上一杯茶。學武之人拜師時也要舉行同樣的儀式。學生必須下跪並敬茶給老師。

有時候,敬茶也有完全不同的本質含義。如果有人做錯事了,想向對方道歉,就會邀請對方見面,給他/她敬茶。如果對方喝了,就表示他/她接受道歉。拒絕喝茶則表示不接受道歉,不原諒對方。

當一家人或者一群人在一起吃飯,在家庭或社會地位中輩分或者職位低的人要給高的人倒茶。

 

 

简体文本

 

“茶”这个字的发音最初源于福建(中国一个沿海省份)方言。中国人不知从何时起就开始有饮茶的习俗,并在几千年前就向世界各地输出茶叶。茶叶在十七世纪输送到欧洲后即成为一种广受欢迎的饮品。

据传说,约四千六百以前,中国远古三大皇帝之一的炎帝第一个发现了茶并将其作为草药应用。据书面记录,约三千年前起,中国开始茶叶种植。那时,中国文字里尚没有“茶”字,都是用“荼”字来表示。“茶”字是唐代著名 “茶圣”陆羽撰写《茶经》时第一次出现,将“荼”字转变为“茶”字。

在中国唐朝(公元618年至907年)以前,只有南方人有饮茶的习惯。唐朝期间,饮茶文化得以广泛传播,远及西藏、蒙古和周边地区。到明朝(公元1368年至1644年),随着新的茶叶加工技术和新的泡茶及饮茶器具的出现,茶文化更为流传。

茶的健康效果

茶叶含有几百种化学物质成分,其中有利于或者可促进人体健康的成分包括氨基酸、类黄酮、茶多酚、各类维生素(C, E和K)、脂多糖、氟化物和咖啡因。人们都相信饮茶适度会提神醒脑,提高视力,坚固牙齿,增强对肠道疾病的免疫能力,并防止身体细胞氧化。

茶的种类

如果按茶叶的大小来划分种类,茶可以分为大叶茶,中叶茶和小叶茶。茶还可以按茶叶的形状来划分种类,则可分为长叶茶,圆叶茶和柳叶茶。

另外,茶还可以按茶叶采摘后的加工方式来划分种类,即我们通常所说的绿茶、红茶,白茶、乌龙茶、黄茶和花茶。

绿茶

茶叶采摘后,经过独特的处理制作而成,这个工序叫做“杀青”。杀青的过程就是将茶叶置于大盘内,加热至70摄氏度,以中和鲜叶中的酶活性。如果温度低于70摄氏度,酶活性会促使茶叶氧化变红,从而影响茶叶的质量。如果温度高于70摄氏度,茶叶就会被烧焦并产生难闻的味道,特别是芽叶和嫩叶。在杀青过程中,大盘应先加盖2至3分钟后再揭开,将盘中的茶叶进行抖动和抛转,以混合均匀。

之后,茶叶加工进入“揉捻”工序,即将茶叶置于揉捻机中进行挤压,扭转和搓揉,使叶片细胞组织受损,将茶叶沿叶脉加工成条状。加工同时,有些叶汁会渗出。根据茶叶或芽叶的成熟度和柔软性,以及揉捻机的尺寸,揉捻过程大约持续20到25分钟。

绿茶是没有经过酶促性氧化处理,也就是中国所说的发酵处理。

“揉捻”工序之后,茶叶会粘合在一起,形成拳头大小的茶团。将揉捻好的茶团转移至另外一个机器打散,根据预定好的尺寸和等级将茶叶筛选出来。

筛选出来的茶叶再通过下列某一方法进行进一步加工:

1. 蒸 - 这种方法在唐宋时期(公元960年至1279年)广为运用,到明朝,这一方法就变得陈旧落后了。然而这一方法流传到日本后,一直被日本作为主要制茶方法沿用至今。
2. 炒 - 这种方法始于晚宋时期,并成为最普遍的茶叶加工方法。茶叶保持青绿,气味芳香,味道醇厚。知名的炒制绿茶有眉茶、珠茶、龙井和碧螺春。
3. 烘 - 烘制绿茶的茶叶看起来不像炒制茶叶那么坚挺和光亮,但也没有破碎。通过这种方法加工过的茶叶颜色泛绿,味道醇厚,香气扑鼻。知名的烘制茶叶有黄山毛峰和太平猴魁等。
4. 晒 - 用这方法晒干的茶叶,不如其它方法制作的茶叶那么香,叶质泛黄。大多数晒制的茶叶是用来制作茶饼的原料。

红茶

茶叶萎凋后变软,水分变少。将茶叶放入揉捻机进行挤压、扭转和搓揉,以使叶片细胞组织受损后搓卷成条形。同时渗出的一些叶汁会粘在茶叶表面。

然后,将茶叶放入发酵盘进行酶促性氧化或者发酵(中国通常叫法)。此工序会破坏叶片中的叶绿素,释放单宁酸。进行发酵处理的房间控制在25到30摄氏度,湿度控制在90%以上。发酵处理后,茶叶变红,根据茶叶的种类,将茶叶置于适当的温度下烘干。

中国生产的红茶包括整叶红茶和碎叶红茶。用于制作碎叶红茶的茶叶在发酵和干燥处理过程中就被机器切碎。通常碎叶红茶会被加工成茶包,便于饮用。

中国产整叶红茶被称为功夫红茶,加工过的茶叶具有坚挺、瘦小和卷曲的特点,叶片保持完整。红茶一般根据产地来命名,例如,安徽省祁门产红茶叫祁红,云南省产红茶叫滇红,广东省英德产红茶叫英红,等等。而福建省正山产的正红属于小叶红茶,茶叶黑而富有亮泽,味道醇厚浓郁。

白茶

白茶是经过半发酵处理而成,主要产地在中国福建和浙江。茶叶主要选取带有白毫的芽叶。茶叶萎凋至丧失70%到80%的水分,不需翻转或翻炒处理,但要烘干。

中国知名白茶包括白毫银针,白牡丹和寿眉。

乌龙茶

乌龙茶起源于福建和广东两省。乌龙茶主要是采摘老的茶叶来制作。采摘的茶叶通过日晒或加热萎凋后,置于搅拌机内进行搅拌,使茶叶边缘细胞受损并氧化,茶叶变红。与此同时,茶叶开始发酵。在茶叶完全发酵之前,即半发酵状态时,将茶叶进行翻炒,之后放入揉捻机内使叶片细胞组织受损,并将平整的茶叶搓卷成条状。渗出的叶汁会粘在茶叶表面。经过揉捻过程之后,茶叶会粘在一起成团状,需打散之后再行干燥。乌龙茶的香气带有水果香和花香,味道浓而清新。

知名的乌龙茶有武夷岩茶,铁观音,黄金桂,水仙茶,凤凰单丛茶和台湾包种茶等。

黄茶

黄茶有两种:大叶黄茶和小叶黄茶。黄茶区别于其它茶种的地方在于其茶叶颜色为黄色,冲泡出来的茶汤也是黄色。黄茶的制作工序如下:

1. “杀青”(详见绿茶章节)
2. “焖黄”(在加盖的锅内加热,使茶叶变黄)
3. 干燥

黄茶制作一般不需要“揉捻”工序,但是也有一些像北港毛尖和鹿苑毛尖等黄茶,在“焖黄”工序前进行揉捻了。

知名黄茶有君山银针,蒙顶黄芽,平阳黄汤等。

黑茶

黑茶是采用大叶茶树上的茶叶制作的。因为制作黑茶的茶叶较老,发酵过程比别的茶叶需要的时间更长,茶叶的颜色接近黑色或深棕色,因而叫做黑茶。黑茶味道浓郁,醇厚,可以反复冲泡达十次。

黑茶在中国少数民族中饮用甚广。而在云南、四川、湖南和广东产的普洱茶却在广东、台湾和东南亚地区很受欢迎。

黑茶像绿茶一样经过“杀青”,但是在茶叶烘干时,烤盘要加盖进行。然后茶叶经过搓揉和翻炒,使叶片细胞组织破损,将茶叶沿叶脉卷成条状,然后将茶叶平摊,通过日晒或烘烤至九成干。将干燥的茶叶轻轻挤压成堆,洒上水,使之发酵,直到茶叶颜色变黑并散发出浓香为止。将茶叶堆晒干后打散,按茶叶大小筛选成不同等级。

普洱茶茶叶还可以在发酵过程中被制作成茶砖或茶饼,以满足不同市场需要。

花茶

花茶是以某种茶坯和能够吐香的鲜花一起制作而成的茶叶。茶叶组织结构疏松,对湿气和香气有很强的吸附力。一般以烘制绿茶为茶坯和吐香的鲜花拌和来制作花茶,但有时也用乌龙茶,且少数情况下也用红茶来做茶坯。

在烘制茶叶与鲜花混合之前,茶叶的含水量不能超过4%。鲜花要选用开花的花朵,因为这时候的花朵吐香能力达到高峰。茶和花拌和之后,由于发酵作用温度会升高。当温度达到一定程度,茶堆需要翻拌通风散热,以降低堆温,使茶叶和鲜花可以透换新鲜空气。这一工序可以重复多次。

之后,通过筛子将茶叶与鲜花分离开来后烘干。为增加花茶的香味,可以往烘干的茶叶中加入少量的鲜花后拌匀,但无须再行烘干。待花茶干透,即可食用。

知名花茶包括茉莉花茶、桂花茶、白玉兰花茶、玫瑰花茶等。

如何冲泡中国茶

泡茶时,同一壶茶可泡数次。往茶壶续茶可使同种茶叶产生不同的味道。要冲泡一壶令人回味无穷的茶,必须要考虑到下列因素:

1. 茶叶的量

泡茶到底需要放多少茶叶是没有严格标准的,都是根据茶的种类、茶壶大小和个人的习惯和口味喜好来决定。老年人偏好浓一点的茶,泡茶时可多放一些茶叶。相反,年轻人大多喜欢淡一些的茶,则可少放一些茶叶。据概测法,要冲泡一杯茶,一般放3克茶叶,加150毫升水。普洱茶则要加量,同量的水要加入5到10克茶叶。如使用茶壶冲泡,就必须根据口感来添加茶叶。以下仅供参考指导:

茶的种类              茶叶量

普洱茶和六安茶     1/5 茶壶
绿茶                   1/5茶壶
乌龙茶                1/3茶壶
白茶                   1/3茶壶
红茶                   1/5茶壶
花茶                   1/5茶壶

2. 泡茶的水温和时间

泡茶的水温要根据茶的种类。虽然用茶杯来泡茶并不是很理想,但是,如果没有茶壶,或者为图方便,有一个方法可以提高用茶杯泡茶的质量,就是先往杯中倒入少量沸水,刚刚没过茶叶即可,等待1分钟左右,再加沸水至八分满。在喝掉三分之二的茶汤后,可以再往杯中续沸水。通过此法,每次续水后茶汤的浓度都会保持相当。

人们一般会用茶壶来泡茶。通常,不同种类的茶在每次续水后需要掌握好的水温和冲泡时间如下。但这并非绝对,可据个人口味灵活调节。

茶的种类               水温和冲泡时间

普洱茶和六安茶      沸水 – 第一次和第二次冲泡时间为15秒,第三次到第五次为1分钟,第六次为3分钟,第七次为5分钟。
绿茶                    85度开水 – 第一次和第二次冲泡时间为1分钟,第三次到第五次为4分钟。
乌龙茶                 沸水 – 第一次和第二次冲泡时间为10秒,第三次为30秒,第四次和第五次为1分半钟。
白茶                    90度开水 – 第一次和第二次冲泡时间为15秒,第三次和第四次为30秒,第五次为1分钟。
红茶                    90度开水 – 第一次和第二次冲泡时间为1分钟,第三次和第四次为1分半钟,第五次为3分钟。

往茶壶内注水时,开水壶必须提高一点,以防止水蒸气渗入茶叶中。而将茶壶中泡好的茶汤倒入茶杯时,茶壶离茶杯越近越好,以免散失茶的味道和茶香。

茶壶

中国产陶瓷闻名于世,其中包括诸如茶壶的陶器。大多数茶道高人偏好用江苏宜兴紫砂制作的茶壶。与其它陶土材料相比,宜兴紫砂可以更好地吸收和保持香味。茶叶放入宜兴紫砂壶后冲泡一段时间后,茶叶会产生更浓的香气。因为宜兴紫砂有天然吸收功能,茶道高人都严格遵循“专壶专用”(一个茶壶只泡一种茶)。用来冲泡红茶的紫砂壶就不能用来冲泡乌龙茶,否则饮茶的人就没法品尝到红茶在味道、口感和香味上有别于乌龙茶的微妙之处。

中国饮茶的社交礼仪

饮茶可以解渴,并让人可以享受品茶的乐趣,但饮茶的习俗随着年代的变迁发生了变化。根据儒家教导,人们应该尊敬家庭长辈或其它年长之人,职位高的人,还有老师(这是在西方社会中令从事教育职业的人羡慕的地方)。所以,为了表示尊敬,人们会在中国新年之日或者父母生日当天敬茶给父母。有些更为传统的家庭里,小孩必须在这两个重要日子给父母下跪叩头,并给父母各敬上一杯茶,父母则发会给小孩装了钱的红包(也叫利是)。

如果想对父母表示感谢他们养育之恩,传统上是在举行婚礼时,新郎新娘要一起跪在父母面前,给他们各敬一杯茶。父母接过饮一口茶之后,会发给新婚夫妇红包,希望带给他们好运。

古时候,当老师收受新生时,学生都必须在孔子像前下跪敬茶,并将茶水洒在祭坛前,以誓他(那时女子不能上学)将发奋学习并遵循儒家教导。学生也要向老师敬上一杯茶。学武之人拜师时也要举行同样的仪式。学生必须下跪并敬茶给老师。

有时候,敬茶也有完全不同的本质含义。如果有人做错事了,想向对方道歉,就会邀请对方见面,给他/她敬茶。如果对方喝了,就表示他/她接受道歉。拒绝喝茶则表示不接受道歉,不原谅对方。

当一家人或者一群人在一起吃饭,在家庭或社会地位中辈分或者职位低的人要给高的人倒茶。

 

Author 作者

 

Kam has been interested in Chinese tea for nearly 30 years. Apart from enjoying the many cups of Chinese tea every day, he has also studied the various types of Chinese tea, the methods of their preparation and how they should be brewed.  He also practises taijiquan and does Chinese calligraphy.

 

 

羅錦生先生對中國茶有著濃厚的興趣已近三十年。 除了每天品茗茶數杯,享受飲茶樂趣外,他還研究了各種中國茶及其加工、沖泡方式。另外,他還堅持練習太極拳和書法。

 

 

 

罗锦生先生对中国茶有着浓厚的兴趣近三十年。 除了每天品茶数杯,享受饮茶乐趣外,他还研究了各种中国茶及其备茶方式,以及如何冲泡。另外,他还坚持演练太极拳和书法。

 

www.chinesechinese.net

 

Translator 譯者

 

Xiangqun Yang
Programme Coordinator in Ming Ai (London) Insitute.  Majored in English & American Language and Literature. Engaged in several foreign projects management and translation, language education and English news programme editor and News Reader in local television in the past. Continues doing some translation at work and in spare time.

 

 

楊向群
明愛學院課程管理人員。畢業於英美語言文學專業。曾參與多個涉外項目的管理和翻譯、語言教育以及地方電視臺英語新聞編輯和主播等工作。工作或閒暇時仍陸續從事翻譯工作。

 

 

杨向群
明爱学院课程管理人员。毕业于英美語言文学专业。曾参与多个涉外项目的管理和翻译、语言教育以及地方电视台英语新闻编辑和主播等工作。工作或闲暇时仍陆续从事翻译工作。