Here are a few close ups of the small teapot (6 cl) I used in my last post. This Shi Ting shape is one of the most classic and elegant, in my opinion, that one can think of for Gongfu Cha. While this is a matter of personal taste which shape one likes best, I think that my pictures (taken in the wonderful setting of the Lin Family Mansion in Banciao) have captured the timeless beauty of this teapot.
This teapot was made within the last 10 years and its maker is not famous. But this is no problem, since a teapot should be judged by its function and the quality of the workmanship, not its price, age or the fame of its maker. Given its size, shape and clay (which is a little softer than the zhuni clay of those teapots in my selection), it works well for roasted Oolongs and old puerh:
Small size: cost efficient for expensive teas and convenient to drink alone. Shape: a classic round shape lets leaves unfold in harmony. For such teapots, there is no inside filter. That means it's best to brew rather big leaves to avoid that small pieces get stuck in the spout. Also, the beauty adds visual pleasure to the tea tasting. Clay: Makes the old/roasted tea more mellow and round. Flow: The tea comes out of teapot in a calm and regular stream.
My name is Stéphane Erler. I live in Taiwan since 1996 and have been studying tea with Teaparker. He's a worldwide tea expert and author of over 30 tea books. The study of tea isn't just theoretical, but it's also rooted in daily practice. It's a path of continuous improvement. As my brewing technique improves I get access to better teas and better accessories. These things go hand in hand. My blog documents my learning since 2004. And I have set up an online tea boutique with my selection of top quality teas, accessories and tea culture.