Part 1 gave you some idea what Yixing teapots were all about while Part 2 showed how to prepare your teapots for use. It’s finally time to start actually steeping tea in your teapot to drink and enjoy!
The First Drinkable Potful — Once the teapots were ready for use, hubby and I selected one of them (eenie – meenie – minie – moe!) for our first steeping of drinkable tea. The “Dragon” teapot was the winner. Since we had designated pu-erh (pu’er) as the type of tea to use in the teapot, the selection of tea was simple. We went for Young Pu-erh, a tea we had tried some time ago and really liked.
We steeped some of this pu-erh in the “Dragon” teapot. Since this style of teapot has a “built-in strainer” comprised of tiny holes inside over the spout opening, so you can toss loose tea leaves in the pot and not need to use a strainer when pouring out the tea liquid.
Not having a tea boat (a special tray to collect any water and/or tea that overflows the teapot — all part of the steeping process), we made do with a cookie sheet and a cooling rack. Not pretty, but very utilitarian for now until we can shop for something appropriate. The teapot sits on the cooling rack which sits on the cookie sheet.
Right: The tea leaves are in the teapot and the hot water is poured in. Left: The water is let overflow the teapot (be careful, since the tea leaves will float to the top and may flow over the sides of the teapot — pouring more slowly as you get to the top of the teapot will help prevent this).
We were generally pleased for now, the flavor being what we had experienced in our earlier tastings. We are looking forward to the tea flavor deepening with each use of the teapot, though. A patina will build up over time on the teapots as we use them and will enrich their colors. All part of the joys of this type of teapot.
There you have it — the basics of our dive into the world of Yixing teapots. Your turn. Take the plunge!
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