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Something’s Brewing: Hong Kong’s Green Tea Put to the Test

Something’s Brewing: Hong Kong’s Green Tea Put to the Test

By Liam Murphy December 12, 2014 / 11:36 HKT
The renowned health benefits of Green Tea are known worldwide, and everyone and his mistress can be found spouting its virtues to anybody who will listen. Liam Murphy took a two-week green tea challenge to see what all the fuss is about.

Naturally, as a Brit, I have a tendency to drink a lot of tea. I’ve always been a little skeptical about the oft-sung wonders of green tea, however, doubtful that this seemingly “hippie” hot beverage could bring my body anything more than my beloved English Breakfast has to offer.

So I set myself a task: two weeks, green tea, no coffee, no builders’ tea. I committed to four cups a day.

green_tea_in_bowl_-_wiki

Once I’d gotten used to the reduced caffeine levels in the first few days, to my surprise, the effects were actually quite amazing. They ranged from an increase in energy and more focus, to an absence of a coffee-crash, better mood, and higher hydration levels.

Needless to say, I was hooked! So much so, that by the end of the first week I added green tea infused water to my two-litre bottle and started to drink both iced and hot tea throughout the day.

In the second week I gained my confidence and started trying a broader range of teas, and found the health benefits varying between them. For example, ginger tea improves circulation and aids digestion, peppermint tea soothes the stomach, and chamomile tea has a natural calming effect on the drinker. These teas are also known to lower the risk of both cardiovascular problems and Alzheimer’s, and are touted as weight loss aids. Plus, they’re delicious, to boot!

ice_tea_-_liam_murphy_coconuts_media

I also found the health kick inspired by my new found love for these teas started to spread into my consumer life in general, with a lot more fruits and veggies being added to my diet, and my daily desire for Snickers being eradicated almost completely. Whether or not I can attribute that solely to the tea, however, is up for debate.

For the Tea Connoisseur (yes, that’s a real thing) or for the general tea enthusiast, such as my newfound self, I highly recommend the Lock Cha Tea House in Hong Kong Park. Located above the mall in Admiralty, it offers drinkers a warm and welcoming atmosphere complete with authentic Chinese design and gentle Chinese flute muzak.

On this occasion I ordered the Taiwan Golden Oolong tea and some Green Squash Dumplings, a perfect combination, as it turns out. The tea was light, refreshing and well worth the relatively hefty price tag of HKD60, having been brewed professionally in front of me and coming with as many refills as I could handle.

lock_cha_tea_house_in_hong_kong_park_-_liam_murphy_coconuts_mediaLock Cha Tea House in Hong Kong Park

The dumplings were also quite possibly the best I have had so far in Hong Kong, with the fresh squash providing a warm and sweet bite of comfort inside the lightly fried, thick doughy pastry. Perfect for the colder weather!

For those who lack the time or desire to go to a tea house, it’s quite possible to sample as many as 100 teas at home given that the local supermarkets stock masses of flavour and variety.

tea_in_supermarket_-_liam_murphy_coconuts_media                                Tea selection in Wellcome supermarket

A good green tea from Wellcome can come as cheap as HKD12. Practically nothing! Although, some advice given to me by my tea waitress: the more expensive the leaves, the better the health benefits.

But maybe she’s not a true tea enthusiast like me and just works on commission.

ORIGINAL ARTICLE: http://hongkong.coconuts.co/2014/12/12/somethings-brewing-hong-kongs-green-tea-put-test

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