Friday, 18 June 2010
The Happiness of a New Teapot
This is my new pride and joy, a Tokoname teapot that I purchased at Taka Tea in the Strand Arcade in Sydney last weekend. I fell in love with the design of maple leaves (there was also a very nice cherry blossom one) and the fact that it has a built in mesh that stretches almost all the way round the inside of the pot - much better than an infuser basket, but I don't have to use my strainer! It pours like a dream - I wasn't sure how easy I would find using the sideways handle, but it's not difficult at all. It will, obviously, be dedicated solely to Japanese green teas.
O-cha.com, Tokoname is one of the 9 ancient kilns of Japan, and here you can see step by step photos of teapots being made by the throwing method or the slip casting method - how cool!)
The lovely people at Taka Tea were very happy to spend time talking with me about their teas and teapots (you can check out their online shop here). They also kindly brewed up a small pot of gyokuro for me to sample, which was deliciously light and fresh. I came away with a packet of first flush yabukita* which I haven't yet opened; I'll work my way through a few other things first, but I'm looking forward to it.
*this appears to be a clonal variety of tea bush widely grown in Japan, capable of adapting well to wherever it is planted. Handy!