The Mid-Autumn Festival (aka Moon Festival here in the Southern Hemisphere) is one of the most significant and important holidays in the Chinese calendar. In 2019, we held a Tea and Mooncake event where brews of 4 different teas were paired with 4 different types of mooncakes. The event was a blast and great fun was had by all. We wish we could've held the event again this year but of course, a little thing called COVID-19 kind of got in the way. So as a bit of a throwback, we thought we'd highlight the 4 tea and mooncake pairings we featured at our event last year.
Coconut Mooncake x Rising Dawn (Oolong Tea)
We started things off light and sweet with a coconut filled mooncake paired with our Rising Dawn (aka Bai Ya Qi Lan) Oolong tea. A complimentary pairing where the sweet and floral nature of the tea is enhanced by the sweetness in the coconut mooncake.
Coconut isn't exactly a traditional filling when it comes to mooncakes, and seems to be more prevalent in south-east Asian countries and communities.
Mung Bean Mooncake x Yellow Rose (Oolong Tea)
Things get a little stronger with this pairing as we move on to the even sweeter Mung Bean Mooncake. We balanced this with the light, roasted flavours of our Yellow Rose Rock Oolong, which helped tone down the sweetness of the Mung Bean. Conversely, the sweet Mooncake also brought out more of the light floral notes of the tea.
Lotus Seed Mooncake x Crimson Dusk (Red / Black Tea)
A Red/Black tea paired with the strongest flavoured mooncake. A fairly traditional mooncake, it also commonly contains a salted egg yolk inside so you get a mixture of sweet and salt. The stronger, fruity and slightly malty flavours of our Crimson Dusk was the perfect match to cut through both the sweet and salty flavours of this mooncake.
Lotus Seed Mooncake x Crimson Dusk Red/Black tea
Snow skin Lychee Mooncake x Ice Breaker (Raw Pu'er)
Snow skin Mooncakes are a little different in that they're usually served cold, and come in a range of sweet, fruit flavoured fillings. We chose the lychee mooncake and paired it with our Ice Breaker Raw Pu'er. An interesting contrast pairing, the strength and bitterness of the tea did well to cut through the sweetness of the mooncake.
The thing is, I wish we could say we had some special, scientific method for coming up with these pairings but really, it was a matter of trying out different combinations with different teas to see which pairings we thought worked and were the most interesting. And with new and different flavoured mooncakes being developed every year, the pairing possibilities are endless.