All of my guests who have visited China notice the basics: delicious food, hospital people, beautiful landscapes, questionable hygiene, and ancient customs. One aspect of Chinese culture I often get asked about is tea culture. One specific part of the tea culture has been left untouched on AL.ME for years: Green Tea To-Go! So today I finally weigh in on an ancient custom that has been born through thousands of years of medical practice and remains a cornerstone in modern Chinese culture.
“Green Tea To-Go” is what I call the green tea containers which are ubiquitous among everyday Chinese (usually men). Bus drivers, office workers, teachers, and government officials can be seen carrying this simple hot beverage container with a strainer all day long. With all the benefits of (green) tea, it isn’t hard to grasp why they are so tea-crazy. It has also become more obvious why they are so excited all the time. (Psst, they are high on green tea!)
For some, it is an addiction. They drink it at every breakfast, with lunch, and in the afternoon; They top off the bottle with steaming hot water every chance they get. It’s not hard to understand why… hot water is available everywhere, 24/7. You can top it off at your office, in the bus station, in the markets, and even in the police station! My recent visit to a PSB in Guangzhou proved that you can keep getting your fix practically anywhere! And when you’re surrounded by it, you’ll have difficulty shaking the habit. (i.e.:Dunkin’ Donuts lovers in much of the USA know what I’m talking about…)
Throughout my years in China I have also chosen to replace most of my coffee drinking with tea. I’m a product of my environment, for better or worse. Green Tea To-Go probably does more good than harm and should be considered as a reasonable way to cut-back on other drinking habits that we might develop over time.
Get some loose tea and a portable bottle, and then try it! Tell me how it goes 🙂