In a desert of stone and sand

It is only 38 degrees centigrade at the moment in this desert of stone and sand, situated three hours’ drive north-west of Cape Town (South Africa). This temperature is relatively clement, as rooibos is often harvested at around 45 degrees. The heat does not bother Aspalathus lineari, also known as rooibos. With roots that bury themselves to depths of up to four metres, the bushes seek coolness deep in the ground. I wish I could do the same!


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

A new Palais des Thés store opens in New York

I was lucky enough to travel to New York last week for the opening of the new Palais des Thés store in Soho (156 Prince Street). Here I am with my niece Aurélie Bessière who has been working with her husband Cy for two years to promote the Palais des Thés brand among Americans.
I was delighted to be able to meet dozens of attentive journalists throughout the course of the day. I showed them the best way to make tea, told them all about my work as a tea researcher and “tea sommelier”, and answered lots of questions. In the evening, Aurélie and I welcomed many guests.
It was a wonderful occasion and a exciting challenge now lies ahead: to encourage people to appreciate fine teas on that side of the Atlantic.


Posted in Palais des Thés by François-Xavier Delmas

Tea, this flavoured water that does us good

I like this hand that holds a cup of tea. A simple cup of tea. I like the way the cup is an extension of the hand. The cup and hand are as one, they know each other, they are made for each other. They are joined together.
Tea is nothing more than that. Tea is nothing more than flavoured water that sustains you and does you good. It is always there for you. A simple pleasure to be savoured in every moment.


Posted in Country: Burma by François-Xavier Delmas | Tags :

Artisanal production

In Myanmar (Burma), the production of tea remains highly artisanal. People make both green and black tea. I haven’t found anything special in my tastings so far, but I’m continuing my research.
Here, in the Hsipaw region, the main tea producing area, villagers take the plucked tea leaves home and process them in front of their houses. This is what the local rolling machines look like. They are worked by hand.


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

A different way of enjoying tea

In some countries, people don’t just drink tea, they eat it.
Like here, in Burma, where they ferment tea leaves in bamboo tubes before serving them drizzled with sesame oil. This dish is served as part of a meal, but it can also be offered at the end of some family and religious ceremonies.


Posted in Country: Burma 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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