Learning the sophisticated art of gong fu cha, we begin to understand the subtleties involved. First, we learn that tea is alive. And only by treating tea properly, preparing it the way it deserves, we are granted an impeccable, sweet, and aromatic brew.
Then we learn about teaware. We understand how to take care of the teaware — with care and never using dish soap. Gently drying after each use. We also learn that teaware is alive, particularly the clay from which the teaware is made.
A Yixing teapot is not just about the clay's porosity, the way it looks, the name, or even the way it makes your tea taste. It is all about the way you take care of it. If not correctly taken care of, a Yixing teapot is just about as useful as a run-of-the-mill ceramic teapot. (Read more)
Jian Zhan teacups have been prized in China and Japan for hundreds of years. During the Song Dynasty, there was even a time where it was considered better not to drink tea at all rather than drinking it from a cup that is not Jian ware!
Following the Song Dynasty, the great art of making Jian ware pottery faded in China. It wasn't until recently that pottery artists are starting to pick up the long-forgotten art of Jian pottery, re-learning it from Japanese potters. The latter have adapted it into tenmoku pottery. (Read more)
As much variations as there are within tea categories, it is the same with teaware. It is to no surprise that there is an ideal teapot or gaiwan for each type of tea there is. Many find these through experimenting on their own, while some knowledge is more widespread. However, in general there are a few things that are best to keep in mind when choosing the right teaware for a particular type of tea. Whether it's for gong fu or more casual tea drinking. (Read more)
If you have looked into yixing clay before then you have probably heard people suggesting only to use your yixing teaware with one type of tea. This is because the clay is porous and easily absorbs flavors and aromas. (Read more)