07 March 2009

LA Tea Affair 2nd Anniversary Event

LATA 2nd Anniversary - pot of goodness
(Photo: Will)

LA Tea Affair events have been some of the most fun tea drinking I have experienced since coming back from Asia. Those of you within driving distance of Los Angeles do not know what you are missing if you haven't come to an LA Tea Affair event yet.

LATA 2nd Anniversary - kettle and gaiwanLATA 2nd Anniversary - lighting the charcoal
(Photos: Tom)

A few weeks ago we celebrated our 2nd anniversary with an outdoor tea at the California Institute of Technology, drinking tea from 1:30 p.m. until past sundown. The recent rains cleared up for the day, and we enjoyed tea, cheese, honey, fresh air and good company.

LATA 2nd Anniversary - Jason and Honey
Jason with honey. Dan unimpressed. (Photo: Will)

Pu'er and oolong were on the menu:
LATA 2nd Anniversary - brewing
The spread...

The spring yiwu was thick and impressive. The Dong Ding was hearty and chocolatey (well priced, too). The Rou Gui had strong qi and fruity oxidation. The Song Zhong I really liked, even though Imen, proprietress of Tea Habitat, said it usually comes out better; it was dankly floral like too many roses, and when we drank it, we all shut up.

LATA 2nd Anniversary - yay tea!
Yay tea! (Photo: Will)

We saved the oldest for last and switched to two 1970s pu'er. By the second tea, it was already dark, and I had to wear a headlamp to brew the tea. That's dedication! Somehow, someone (not me) had planned for this.

LATA 2nd Anniversary - Dedicated to tea
Tea dork (Photo: Imen)

The two 70s pu'ers pushed us into tea drunkenness, and the last one still had some strength left when we had to leave for dinner, so we brought the wet leaves with us and had the restaurant brew them for us.

We ate at a Sichuan restaurant so authentic the front door could have been a portal to China. Fresh Sichuan peppercorn numbed us, pickled peppers burned us, and many napkins later we left with full bellies and ready for some dessert. We slurped black rice and fruit concoctions at a Hong Kong style dessert place known for serving frog fallopian tubes and birds nest mixed into their treats.


maysbelle said...

What a delightful recap of the whole lovely evening. I am so grateful to have been a part of it. Thanks for brewing the tea too! :)


Arcane-Dissonance said...

It looked like you all had a wonderful time! My brother and I have been planning an outing such as this and we were wondering how you heated your water throughout the day?

Jason Fasi said...


One of the B&W photos shows the portable propane stove we used to heat the water. We also had two Chaozhou-style charcoal stoves. :)


Mark Chapeskie said...

Hey Jason, glad you liked the Rou Gui. For the record though, we never mentioned who our source was for the cliff teas. - Mark Chapeskie, co-founder, Cloudwalker Teas.

Heatwaves said...

How does one find out about your little events? I'm in Orange County and would love to join you guys sometime.



Jason Fasi said...


You can get on the announcement list at latea.org


alexis said...

This event sounds so lovely! I wish I wasn't across the country, so that I come absorb all of your tea insight and take in such a wonderful experience.