Friday, October 12, 2007

Yixing teapots

Yixing (pronounced as "ee-shing"), near Shangai, has a long tradition of the "pottery capital" of China. World's first teapots were created there during the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644). These distinctive reddish stoneware teapots came to be considered the "best vessel for brewing tea".
Yixing teapots are made from the special "Zisha" (purple sand) clay. They are not glazed.
When tea is brewed in these teapots a tiny amount of tea is absorbed in the interior. Yixing teapot is never washed with just rinsed it withcold water. With continued use, a layer of tea sediment is formed.
Many of Yixing teapots made for Chinese market are kind of small (100-300 ml) by Western standards. This is done so the entire content of the pot may be quickly emptied after each infusion. That way tea is always served fresh, hot and strong...

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