Monthend Tastebuds: Let’s Drink Some Tea

This post is inspired by Liz of Beauty Reductionista where she talks about her love for tea. Unlike Liz, I don’t drink much coffee. While others claim they need coffee to kick start their day, or to stay awake, I claim that coffee does nothing to me. I will still doze off. I guess sleep overpowers everything else. I’m a tea drinker. I love my tea, Chinese tea, but I’ve never really talked about it. I guess I just don’t talk tea language. So, tea experts, please don’t judge. It’s just my way of drinking tea, so right or wrong, it’s just my way πŸ˜›

I wanted to show you these tea, which belong to my in-laws. They like collecting tea, and they have expensive taste. I don’t. When I’m lazy, I just buy my Twinnings Jasmine Green Tea and dunk it in hot water. These leaves are packed in paper, and the older they are, the better. To drink, we just take some loose leaves and put it in a pot. There are many types of tea leaves, from black tea to flower tea to oolong tea. I like myΒ ti kuan yin, chrysanthemum, cha wang andΒ po lei (also known as pu-erh).




Now, teapots are part of the fun. I bought this Tenmoku tea set for a reasonable price. The set consists of a tea pot, tea holder and 6 little cups. They sit prettily on one of the cabinets in the dining room. We used it before, but sets get rotated.


tenmoku collage


There are different ways of drinking tea. I prefer it to be minimalistic, but my in-laws have a ritual. They like to use little clay pots and cups. If they’re plastic, they’d look like they fit in my children’s playroom. They are super adorable. Usually, hot water is poured onto all the pots and cups, to warm them up before using. Some also believe that teapots aren’t meant for washing. I was told that tea tastes better if the teapot is older. Unfortunately for me, my tastebuds aren’t sophisticated enough to tell.


clay set

clay set open

pot details


Just to show you some different types of tea pots in the house….




So that’s just a brief overview of tea talk. We like to drink tea as it is. It is weird to drink it with milk and sugar. Because I’m used to drinking tea as is, I can’t bring myself to add anything to my Earl Grey either. Personally, I’m used to having tea with my meals, or with snacks. I especially love my tea with dim sum. It just isn’t the same without a hot little cup to sip after a bit ofΒ char siew pau. Some say tea has the ability toΒ wash off fats from food. I usually search for proof, but in this case, true or false, I’d like to believe it. Drinking tea will be that much sweeter with that added fact.

Let me end this post with a short story. I was 4 years old. We went to a dim sum place for breakfast and I was apparently taking my own sweet time, aΒ char siew pau in my left hand, and a little cup of tea in my right. One bite of food, one sip of tea. My parents were threatening to leave me there, and I just ignored them, slowly sipping my tea. I guess I started young. LOL!

What about you? Are you a tea drinker? What tea do you like? Do you prefer coffee with your meals?


xoxo Lily



  • Stephanie/Yukaeshi

    Oooh I love this post! πŸ™‚ It’s something refreshing indeed (Pun kind of intended) πŸ˜€

    I love tea! I don’t drink coffee at all… OK maybe once in a while but I’ll definitely choose tea over coffee any day. Green/matcha, ti kuan yin, po lei (Or pu erh), jasmine, genmaicha, milk tea, teh tarik, teh Madras… lol! I also love collecting teapots πŸ˜€

    And like you I prefer to have my tea minimistically, but rituals once in a while is kind of fun actually πŸ˜› I’ve been part of a proper Japanese tea ceremony a few times and even hosted before- while it can be quite tedious it really is quite interesting!

    I hardly add milk and sugar to tea, unless they come that way e.g. teh tarik or milk tea… but there was once I made an exception during a course and there was a variety box of Twinings for the students to make- I made English Breakfast and added milk and sugar and ta-da! Milk tea. I don’t think I’d add milk and sugar to any other teas, though, only English Breakfast because I know it kind of is “the tea” to add milk and sugar without tasting “funny” haha πŸ˜›

    Sorry for the long reply! *_*

    • I love long replies πŸ™‚ I don’t like teh tarik or milk tea. I don’t know… when tea is mixed with milk and sugar, I cringe. LOL!

  • Victoria

    Nice post πŸ™‚ I try to avoid coffee because I have acid reflux but when I do drink coffee, the caffeine really keeps me awake. Hahaha. I am just beginning to appreciate tea and I started drinking jasmine green tea although not regularly. I am going to try out carmomile tea soon as I was told it would help with a good night sleep.

    • Oh, I heard chamomile has soothing and calming properties, yes. I love jasmine green tea!

  • I love this, I always took tea for granted! My parents are avid po lei/pu erh drinkers, with the occasional appearance from Sau Mei or Ti Kuan Yin teas. I think the thing about the fat burning off is kind of the same theory as using hot water to wash your dishes — it just dissolves better. My family is also really into soups, of which we drink copious amounts before and after each meal, it’s supposed to aid your digestion.

    • Ah, yes soup. Maybe I should write about that another time. We drink soup with our dinners most of the time too!

  • Hannah

    Oh, I like this post! I hardly drink coffee except for the occasional sips of the hubs’ Nespresso or the even more occasional Starbucks/Coffee Bean concoctions. But I LOVE tea! From Lipton to TWG but oh especially Chinese tea (leaves) and Japanese green tea (matcha and sencha). I MUST have a cup of tea every day. Be it tea bag in my mug or tea leaves in my tea press/pot.
    I have a complete Chinese tea drinking set, a couple of Chinese tea (clay) pots and a chasen (a Japanese tea whisk for my matcha powder) though those are sadly neglected as I am on most days a casual tea drinker. However, I appreciate and enjoy traditional/formal tea drinking rituals, being acquainted with Chinese gongfu cha and having learnt Japanese chado (traditional Japanese tea ceremony) during my uni days. I find the rituals, though tedious, tranquilising to the mind. Hopefully I’ll have time and space to do proper tea preparation and drinking in the future. :p

    • That’s right! Gongfu cha. My in-laws enjoy that very much. Oh, please write about proper tea preparation. I’d love to read that very much!

  • Hi Lily! I need coffee in the morning, but if I were to drink something in the afternoon I go for tea.
    From the technical point of view, for a kick start during the day, both coffee and tea contain lots of caffein (as we know…). Tea leaves actually contain more caffein than coffee beans. But tea leaves also contain other substances that sort of “keeps the caffein absorbed” and then it will be released slowly inside you. This means that the kick start effect that tea gives, is supposed to be slightly gentler, but longer lasting during the day πŸ™‚
    The tea sets you show are beautiful, especially that green and blue one!

    • Thanks for sharing the technical side of things. Interesting!!!! Well, that also means caffeine has no effect on me. I can drink tea before bed and I still sleep like a baby πŸ˜›

  • Mmm…I’m ready for a tea party now!! πŸ˜€

    • In Boston? LOL!!!!

  • liyeun

    Nice post indeed! U r such a diva when u were a child, funny!!! Anyway I am more of a tea person rather than coffee, but I hv put them aside after I was pregnant with my first child. I wonder why….. now it’s time to dig them all out! Oh I love twinnings too!

    • I drank tea even when I was pregnant. Naughty!!! Haha

  • Petrina

    I love tea!! Haha but I love coffee too! I’ve gone almost a year without coffee ( pregnancy) and a much reduced tea intake and it was sooo hard!

    • You can drink tea now that you’ve delivered πŸ™‚ Welcome back!

  • I used to make tea in a fancy and traditional way like that. It does enhance your tea flavor and drinking experience. Someine used to give me a bag of green tea leaves from Taiwan, tasted sooooo delightful.

    • Hi MaysaAndSunshine, thanks for dropping by. I haven’t tried Taiwanese green tea before, but I’m sure they’re awesome πŸ™‚

  • Ohh, fun! I don’t have a fancy teapot, but I want to get one someday. Maybe when we move into our own place and finally settle down for a while! πŸ™‚ I love tea.

    • Yay! Remember to write about it then πŸ˜€

  • Nida

    A different and nice post I love tea but I like to have it with milk and no sugar. Those T pots are so adorable.

    • Yeah, those teapots are super cute. Some are so small (single serving ones), they’re the size of a palm only πŸ™‚

  • Tracy@Beauty Reflections

    Love this post!
    I also drink teas as is-I hate when they have milk and sugar in them. Unless of course, I’m having High Tea in London somewhere haha!

    • High tea in London. That’s a thought! So posh πŸ˜€

  • BooBooNinja

    I love tea — the ritual of it, how it soothes me, and how it reminds me of my best friend. Your first photo is: wow! πŸ™‚

    • Aww, I’m glad it brought back fond memories πŸ™‚

  • Jennifer

    Great post Lily! These days I am an avid coffee drinker due to the stress at work. If I am lucky and wake up early enough to beat the traffic jam, I find myself lounging at the coffee house for a calm morning with my fav cuppa before I start a long day. But with that, it becomes a habit – a bad one! And I put on some much weight thanks to the syrup and milk and sorts in the coffee. In the afternoon, I usually have green tea with my home packed lunch. I bought the green tea bags from Isetan and they’re ok. Personally I think I am a tea person and yes, dimsum without tea is so incomplete. I am intrigued by the tea ceremonies though I have not been to one. But just like any other wine or coffee, to fully experience the taste, sometimes these rituals are great! Oh and I never add sugar or milk to my tea, not the Chinese or even Western style ones except for lemon slices. Well, I am guilty of the Bubble Tea fanfare, haha that one is potent!

    • Bubble Tea… especially with Chatime sprouting like mushrooms. My hubs loves it. I just…. can’t. HAHA! I think black coffee is OK, without milk or sugar. Sometimes I drink that, but I still prefer my tea. Oh, I’ve been to this tea house once, and they served tea together with all the fancy schmancy rituals. It was super fun!

  • Liz

    Awww, that image of little Lily sipping on tea is too cute! πŸ˜€

    Beautiful pictures of the tea pots and sets! That world map one is amazing. I NEED IT. I don’t have fancy tea pots because I’m still a tea newbie and just use the kettle and infuser cups, but now I want to go shopping for tea accessories so badly. LOL

    And jasmine tea with dim sum is one of the most sublime things in the world. LOVE.

    • Tea sets are cool! Japanese tea sets are more beautiful because they have very intricate designs. My mother in law also has some vintage English tea sets. They’re gorgeous πŸ™‚

  • SO MANY PRETTY TEA THINGS!! πŸ™‚ yay. i need to get myself pretty tea things

    • LOL Joyce… I don’t think tea sets are a necessity but they sure are pretty πŸ™‚