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Culture talk: Tea Pairing with ZhongZi during Dragon Boat Festival

Jun 07 2019 Yumi Cheung

As part of our goal to introduce a simplified tea ceremony that suits a contemporary lifestyle, we'd like to demystify some of the festivals celebrated in the Far East and its cultures behind:

Dragon Boat Festival celebrated annually on 7 June 

The Origin of Zhongzi

In ancient China, during the Chu Dynasty (209BC - 202 BC), there was a legendary politician and poet named Qu Yuan (Kutsugen). Qu is not only a patriot but also very outspoken about the mistakes of the state at the time. However he was slandered by other jealous officials and banished by the King of Chu. He was despair and in the end threw himself into the river. People mourned his death and tried to recover his body by throwing Zhongzi to the river so that the fish in the river would eat Zhongzi instead the body of Qu Yuan. In commemoration of Qu Yuan, the dragon boat races are also held yearly on the day of his death. 

Since then, as an offering of the Dragon Boat Festival, the customs over China and Japan are to wrap Zhongzi in leaves of bamboo forming a pyramid shape. The leaves give a special aroma and flavor to the sticky rice and fillings. 

Tea Pairing of ZhongZi

Puer tea is a post-oxidised tea that is prized for its unique health benefits. Pu'er undergone the process of piling and continuous fermentation, which reinvigorates the microbial properties within the teas and helps to boost metabolism. It has also been praised for its weight loss and lowering cholesterol properties. 

Shop our Aged Puer here