Do you guys use scales?


Discussion on virtually any teaware related item.

Re: Do you guys use scales?

Postby yanom » Oct 10th, '12, 05:16

I may be mistaken, but i was always under the impression that drinking tea is a long journey of learning

It might be for you. But then again, lots of things are a "long journey of learning". Riding a bike, cooking bread, watching action videos, building walls, tap-dancing, walking outside, reading books, cleaning the floor, growing chillis, cutting toe-nails. Always room for improvement.
And there are lots of things one can learn to do by feel rather than by measurement, but it doesn't mean the reasons for doing so are always compelling.
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Re: Do you guys use scales?

Postby yanom » Oct 10th, '12, 05:23

Also: for some, scales might be a normal part of a tea set-up. For others clearly they're an unnecessary addition. But that second person who doesn't need scales might still have several different teapots and cups and maybe a special tray and also he or she might have a sequence of steps that are usually followed during the tea-making process. A third person might think all that is overdone and prefers boiling water and a nice bowl and thinks anything else is an unnecessary crutch!
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Re: Do you guys use scales?

Postby theredbaron » Oct 10th, '12, 06:51

yanom wrote: But then again, lots of things are a "long journey of learning". Riding a bike, cooking bread, watching action videos, building walls, tap-dancing, walking outside, reading books, cleaning the floor, growing chillis, cutting toe-nails.



Very amusing.

It seems that the scholar John Blofeld may have wasted his time writing the Chinese Art of Tea, and should have concentrated in researching the art of cleaning the floor. Okakura should have written on tap dancing. And as we are at the topic - lets get rid of Lu Yu the tea god, and put up instead a Chilli god. Maybe there may also be one or the other sect that uses cutting toe nails as Tea is used by Taoist and Buddhist sects in China, Japan or Korea.

Why don't we just propose to rename this forum into watching action movies discussion chat, ask Jean Claude and Steven Seagal to be our patrons, as all this crap about tea isn't of any interest anyhow...
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Re: Do you guys use scales?

Postby yanom » Oct 10th, '12, 07:26

I'm not sure those are very sensible suggestions. But I also don't see why making and enjoying tea gets privileged to be some "long journey of understanding" whereas other skills and interests don't. As if, using scales makes sense when baking bread but not when making tea.
Don't forget, before thermometers people in China would have had to memorise stuff such as "crab eyes", then "fish eyes", blah blah to work out when the water was ready rather than just by "feel". Maybe in the past there were people there who said that it was unnecessary to pay attention to these things and that over time you should be able to work out when the water was ready just by listening to it. Or, just by knowing how long a given amount of water took to boil in a certain kettle under a certain flame during certain weather conditions. And that this knowledge was all part of a long journey of understanding, while the people learning about fish eyes and crab eyes were taking some kind of dodgy shortcut.
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Re: Do you guys use scales?

Postby yanom » Oct 10th, '12, 07:31

By the way redbaron I'm sorry to single out your comment, not least because almost everything that I can recall reading you write here about tea makes loads of sense and tends to be very close to my way of doing things, or how I'd like to do things.
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Re: Do you guys use scales?

Postby theredbaron » Oct 10th, '12, 07:42

Thanks.

:)
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Re: Do you guys use scales?

Postby theredbaron » Oct 10th, '12, 08:21

And it's not like that i haven't learned things on this forum as well. Two very practical things that were to enormous benefit for me: i found out about many Japanese tea internet shops here i had no idea about, and a found out about Hojo' tea pots, made the jump and bought one the Shimizu Ken Yellow Clay pots, which may cost a lot, but was a pot i have been looking for since years for Japanese greens - small, simple, and very good.
I have many Japanese pots and sets, they are beautiful, no doubt, but mostly too big for expensive Senchas and Gyokuros, and have more beauty than function.
This, for me, is the perfect pot for Japanese greens.
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Re: Do you guys use scales?

Postby gingkoseto » Oct 10th, '12, 20:15

debunix wrote:The only thing that bothers me about this discussion, now and whenever it comes up, is the idea that useful tools like scales and thermometers somehow interfere with the development of one's tea brewing skills. For some people, that might be true, but for many of us who do not have the benefit of tea masters to learn from in person, these tools help to shorten the period of unpredictability in our tea brewing.


I think I know exactly what you mean. Maybe after some time, it's no longer bothering... because this kind of mentality is everywhere and is probably part of human nature. I remember the first week I was in this country, I went to a seminar in which there were people from many different countries, more than I had ever seen in the first 20 years of my life. The speaker said something very impressive to me. He said, people tend to start out thinking "my way is the only way..." then when they met more people, they would recess to thinking "my way is the best way..." then they may further recess to think "my way is one of the better ways..." and it would take most people quite a while (or forever?) to realize "my way is just one of the ways..." :mrgreen: This kind of discussion is good for people to see different people use different ways and it's perfectly normal.
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Re: Do you guys use scales?

Postby sherubtse » Oct 11th, '12, 08:37

gingkoseto wrote:He said, people tend to start out thinking "my way is the only way..." then when they met more people, they would recess to thinking "my way is the best way..." then they may further recess to think "my way is one of the better ways..." and it would take most people quite a while (or forever?) to realize "my way is just one of the ways..." :mrgreen:


Yes, I completely agree! And this also applies to many other areas of life as well.

Best wishes,
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Re: Do you guys use scales?

Postby ethan » Oct 11th, '12, 12:55

And then there is, "My way is just one of the ways," but since I know that, I am the best man in the world. lol
Seriously, nice to read these comments after it got a bit testy.
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Re: Do you guys use scales?

Postby dchew78 » Oct 11th, '12, 21:47

The be honest, my way is the best way- otherwise I wouldn't be using it :lol:

But of course it should be further clarified that my way is the best way for me given the circumstances based on what I know

It may not be the best for everyone, or if circumstances change- e.g. if I have ready access to Huangshan Spring, I would dump Volvic in a jiffy.

And the 'best' way has evolved over the years with more experience and contact with tea masters.

:D So if I ever appear overzealous arguing my POV, it's usually because I believe passionately in it- but with the above disclaimers

:)
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Re: Do you guys use scales?

Postby MarshalN » Oct 11th, '12, 22:20

dchew78 wrote:The be honest, my way is the best way- otherwise I wouldn't be using it :lol:

But of course it should be further clarified that my way is the best way for me given the circumstances based on what I know

It may not be the best for everyone, or if circumstances change- e.g. if I have ready access to Huangshan Spring, I would dump Volvic in a jiffy.

And the 'best' way has evolved over the years with more experience and contact with tea masters.

:D So if I ever appear overzealous arguing my POV, it's usually because I believe passionately in it- but with the above disclaimers

:)


I think that sums up any discussion, otherwise we wouldn't have a discussion
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Re: Do you guys use scales?

Postby Marco » Oct 13th, '12, 16:38

Really enjoyed this discussion and its polarisation. :)

Scales are for ... ;) - just kidding

Never used scales or thermometers or gadgets like this.
Then someone gifted me a scale. Sometimes I use it and the big surprise for me was that I guessed my amounts of tea totally wrong.
I still think using one isn't the right way - at least for me.
So I just sometimes have a look how much tea this is that I put into my pot. Or if someone recommends a leaf to water ratio I take a look if I am close to it or far away.

just my 2 cent
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Re: Do you guys use scales?

Postby gingkoseto » Oct 13th, '12, 23:41

Marco wrote:Sometimes I use it and the big surprise for me was that I guessed my amounts of tea totally wrong.


I feel it doesn't matter anyway. Whether you can guess 5g or 7g correctly has nothing to do with whether you put the right amount of tea in your pot. Basically all grams or ounces can be converted to "one enjoyable unit" or "one next-time-I'm-going-to-use-more/less-leaf unit" :wink:
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Re: Do you guys use scales?

Postby gasninja » Oct 15th, '12, 09:20

I guess I'll wade into these shark infested waters. I have a scale I don't used it all the time but for certain situations I feel a scale can be helpful. Such as with highly compressed teas, samples, or very expensive teas ( which I only ever have sample amounts of). I would say I use a scale about ten percent of the time. I think a scale can be helpful for people such as my self with no or little access to a TEAcher. As long as the scale is used as a learning aid rather than a crutch.
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