People and itineraries crossing paths

Life is about meeting people, about trajectories that follow one another or cross paths. Life is a path.

I dedicate this photo to Emilie who has looked after my blog since it started. I record my thoughts, but it is Emilie who presents them so beautifully. She gives them titles. She also searches through my many photos, sometimes cropping one for better effect. And she gives my writing a second life on the social networks.

Emilie is now taking another path, and I’ll miss her. I’d also like to thank her for the quality of her work. I hope she enjoys the road ahead. And I hope it is as beautiful as this one, which winds its way between the tea plants towards Darjeeling.

Posted in Country : India, Places I like in Darjeeling by François-Xavier Delmas | Tags : ,

A delightful gift from a Japanese supplier

When I meet tea producers we always exchange small gifts. It’s a nice way of expressing our pleasure at working together.

One of our Japanese suppliers with whom I’ve just spent the day has given me these delightful ceramic figures. I photographed them in the morning light, before making them an offering of a Gyokuro. Looking at them fills me with a sense of calm and wellbeing.

Posted in Country : Japan by François-Xavier Delmas | Tags : , , ,

The “zhong”: a good means to assess a tea’s potential

There are many ways of drinking tea. At home you can use a teapot, a mug, a “kyusu” or a “zhong”, to name a few…

When I visit farmers I discover other methods of preparing tea, sometimes using different equipment. So I adapt my approach to the tasting according to the method used. Here, with our producer of Dan Congs, the teas are infused three times in a row, in a zhong, and each infusion is poured immediately into one of the bowls set out in front. We taste each of the three liquors, and can then easily assess the tea’s potential to be prepared using the “Gong Fu Cha”.

Posted in Country : China, Professional tasting by François-Xavier Delmas | Tags : , , , , , ,

A familiar little train on my blog…

The little train of Darjeeling is a familiar sight on my blog. It comes and goes whenever it pleases, without so much as a by-your-leave. And it doesn’t just do this on my pages either: look how casually it makes use of the road when it fancies! Other vehicles have to watch out when this train is about.

Posted in Country : India by François-Xavier Delmas | Tags : ,

India: heavy rains cause landslides

During the months of July and August there are heavy rains in Darjeeling, and many landslides occur in the weeks following the downpours. Sometimes you see a pretty little village that appears to be suspended over a ravine.

The tea plants you see in the foreground and on the slope itself are near Lingia.

Posted in Country : India by François-Xavier Delmas | Tags : , , ,

The author

François-Xavier Delmas is a passionate globetrotter. He’s been touring the world’s tea plantations for more than 20 years in search of the finest teas. As the founder of Le Palais des Thés, he believes that travelling is all about discovering world cultures. From Darjeeling to Shizuoka, from Taiwan to the Golden Triangle, he invites you to follow his trips as well as share his experiences and emotions.

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