Friday, 2 September 2016

The Nanyang Spirit in a cup

One of the many steps in kung fu brew, 
Kung fu - these two words sounds simple in writing, pronouncing but it carries a deeper meaning than the commonly known martial art. In rich Chinese dictionary of words, kung fu is also associated with skills, perseverance and ways. Besides that, there is also a popular saying that one’s kung fu can only be attained some days later through hard work, perseverance and distinctive skills.

In tea brewing, the kung fu brew is one among the many methods. Once again, simple as it sound but rich in significance, the brewing of the kung fu tea comes with various interconnected step and the story of Chinese ancestors that sailed to the Nanyang, today’s Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia and Thailand. It is the story of destiny, fortune, culture and life, full of ups and downs. Subsequently, the journey arrive at the birth of two nations - Singapore and Malaysia. Connecting all the dots at each historical juncture, we conclude it with one name –The Nanyang Spirit.

The kung fu brew originated from the Chao Shan region in the east of Guangdong Province. It gained huge acceptance and popularity in Nanyang and subsequently from the four sides of this world. Over thousands of miles and hundreds of years, the tradition of the brew remain intact. Besides Chinese descendants, the kung fu brew also gain acceptance from the myriad communities in Nanyang and became part of everyone’s enormous story.

To attain the perfect taste of Nanyang kung fu brew, firstly, one must have the utensils, followed by good quality of tea. Thirdly, tea etiquette. Subsequently, the vital, can’t be missed “skills” when brewing the tea.

What is the meaning of “skills”? It lies in preparing the pot, warming of the cups; gathering the right energy of both. How about the taste? The aroma emitted during the brew must be salivating. Where comes the etiquette? The host and guests exchanging banter; its beauty produce excellent tea.

Alas, in Nanyang, it is hard to explain this segment of the society with its hundreds of years of tradition and spirit in full and wholly. This is the whimsical East after all! Only through experience that one can truly understand, so, please drink a cup of the "Nanyang-nised" kung fu tea. Set your imaginations wide and be inspired by it. The rotating strong after taste that linger in the mouth is the combination of good will and culture from the generations of people living in this Equatorial zone. It is the Nanyang Spirit!

*This article was originally written in Chinese by a friend; modified and translated by yours truly.

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