You need a good teapot to truly enjoy a good cup of tea. For centuries, the aesthetic Yixing teawares are known to be the best vessel for brewing tea. Yixing teapots are famous in China and abroad for it’s renowned beauty and practicality.
Yixing teapot was first produced during the Sung Dynasty (A.D. 960 - 1280) but did not flourish until the Ming Dynasty (1600). The Yixing teapot is made from the world’s only source of unique clay located in Jiangsu province in China. This clay is called “Zisha” or purple clay. During the Ming Dynasty traders have bought these beautiful teapots to Europe and have fueled demand among Europeans. Demand throughout China and from Europe had spurred a high level of artistic mastery in teapot design. The Yixing craftsmen inscribe Chinese art, classical literature, and calligraphy on the body of the teapots. The exceptional artistry had inspired Yixing teapot collection among scholars and elites in China. They became sought-after treasures and are often found in the homes of royal families and social elites.
The Chinese have made teapots from different materials: jade, agate, crystal, lacquer, bamboo, iron, chinaware, sand, and clay. Yixing clay teapots have evolved to be the most popular teapots in China and it has endured the test of time. The Yixing teapots are handmade individually from purple clay. With continued usage the porous and unglazed teawares will absorb the aroma and flavors of your tea. It is said that if you use a Yixing teapot for many years, you can brew tea by just pouring boiling water into the empty pot. The exceptionally strong purple clay will also increase in luster and color with repeated use. They have the ability to withstand high temperatures and are slow to conduct heat; therefore, the handle remains comfortably cool even when pouring very hot tea.
Preparing Your New Yixing Teapot
Steps for teapot preparations prior to first use:
Cleaning Your Yixing Teapot
- Remove lid and add tealeaves into the teapot. Use tealeaves that you intend to brew in the future with your Yixing Clay Teapot.
- Pour boiling water into your Yixing Teapot.
- Let your teapot soak in the tea for 24 hours.
- After 24 hours, remove the contents of the teapot.
- Rinse well with hot water. This removes the natural earthy aroma of the teapot and rinses away any clay residue from the inside of your pot.
- Let it air dry uncovered.
After each teapot usage, follow instructions below:
- Pour the tea sediments away.
- Rinse out the pot with hot water.
- Wipe the outside dry with a soft cloth.
- Leave in a dark dry corner to dry naturally.
Caution: Never use soap, cleansers, or detergents on your Yixing teapot.