Junzo Kobiwako vs. Tachi Shigaraki

Vanenbw
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Sun Jan 05, 2020 5:39 pm

faj wrote:
Sun Jan 05, 2020 5:03 pm
Unless I am mistaken, Akira Hojo himself suggests brewing in glass and then pouring the liquor in teapots as a way to compare clays with the same tea.
He might, I'm not sure; however, I did see him use a glass pitcher in one of his demo videos on YouTube. He brewed the tea in the houhin, and then poured each successive infusion into the glass pitcher. Then he poured from the pitcher into the tea cups.
faj wrote:
Sun Jan 05, 2020 5:03 pm
My take would be this :
  • If you drink from a cup that is not made of glass, worry first about the impact your cup has on the taste of the tea which is likely to be much bigger that of a glass samashi
  • If you drink from a cup that is made of glass, then probably a glass samashi cannot do much more harm
I don't drink from a glass. It's always either a ceramic mug or porcelain cups. It's funny how drinking tea was the simplest thing in the world to me, and something I did every single day with no thought about how to prepare tea. I just drank it. Now it's like a science. I'm actually losing sleep over all of this lately. :lol:
faj
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Sun Jan 05, 2020 6:21 pm

Vanenbw wrote:
Sun Jan 05, 2020 5:39 pm
He might, I'm not sure; however, I did see him use a glass pitcher in one of his demo videos on YouTube. He brewed the tea in the houhin, and then poured each successive infusion into the glass pitcher. Then he poured from the pitcher into the tea cups.
I think you can consider glass neutral, and use it without worrying that it might change the taste of your tea. Of course, neutral containers have other characteristics aside from being inert (i.e. heat retention), so for instance infusing tea in two glass vessels may very well produce different results even if the material itself is neutral.
Vanenbw wrote:
Sun Jan 05, 2020 5:39 pm
I don't drink from a glass. It's always either a ceramic mug or porcelain cups.
I was not suggesting you should use glass cups, only that using a glass samashi is unlikely to cause changes in the taste of your tea worse than your cups.
Vanenbw wrote:
Sun Jan 05, 2020 5:39 pm
It's funny how drinking tea was the simplest thing in the world to me, and something I did every single day with no thought about how to prepare tea. I'm actually losing sleep over all of this lately. :lol:
Just saying : losing sleep might also be a side effect of drinking too much tea... :D
Last edited by faj on Sun Jan 05, 2020 6:36 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Vanenbw
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Sun Jan 05, 2020 6:29 pm

So true, and believe me, I thought the same thing. I always drink green tea early in the evening, but I might be using more leaf now than I previously used. I noticed it's affected my sleep lately. But I also tend to get wired when I get into something new, so it's either the excitement of learning about brewing tea and looking for new teaware online, or it's drinking too much tea. Could be a little of both.
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nasalfrog
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Sun Jan 05, 2020 8:48 pm

Vanenbw wrote:
Sun Jan 05, 2020 4:29 pm

...Is it recommend not to brew any roasted teas in this type of clay?...
I would not brew roasted tea in it, especially if it has a strong roasty character.

This is my glass “yuzamashi” that I have been using with the Kobiwako.
C118E8C2-4A2A-46E4-904F-0F12416DC792.jpeg
C118E8C2-4A2A-46E4-904F-0F12416DC792.jpeg (97.94 KiB) Viewed 1038 times
https://www.amazon.com/gp/aw/d/B0186CSS ... UTF8&psc=1

It’s not elegant for sure, but I can easily measure my water (beware, they are not totally accurate according to my gram scale). I don’t have a temperature control kettle, so I’m coming off a boil every time and this has proven to be handy for me.

If it’s not reactive for chemistry, I don’t see why it would react with tea. Anyway, I’m pretty sure that’s green tea in the picture :lol:
faj
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Sun Jan 05, 2020 9:04 pm

nasalfrog wrote:
Sun Jan 05, 2020 8:48 pm
This is my glass “yuzamashi” that I have been using with the Kobiwako.

https://www.amazon.com/gp/aw/d/B0186CSS ... UTF8&psc=1
There are some with handles. Here is a quick example, available in several smaller formats.

https://www.amazon.com/Beaker-Handle-Bo ... r=8-1&th=1
Vanenbw
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Sun Jan 05, 2020 9:05 pm

nasalfrog wrote:
Sun Jan 05, 2020 8:48 pm
I would not brew roasted tea in it, especially if it has a strong roasty character.
Thanks, I will use another kyusu for brewing roasted teas.

I was look looking at one of these graduated cylinder cups last week, not to use as a yuzamashi, but for measuring. If glass wont affect the taste of the water, I don't see why I could not use one as a yuzamashi.
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nasalfrog
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Sun Jan 05, 2020 9:14 pm

faj wrote:
Sun Jan 05, 2020 9:04 pm

There are some with handles. Here is a quick example, available in several smaller formats.

https://www.amazon.com/Beaker-Handle-Bo ... r=8-1&th=1

Nice find! I wish I had known about those in the past. I made the mistake of ordering too small with my first ones... had to be really careful not to burn my fingers at higher temps.
Vanenbw
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Sun Jan 05, 2020 9:32 pm

That is a nice find, @faj. Currently, when I measure, I use my Pyrex 8 oz. measuring cup, which has ml on one side of the glass. I have to estimate some of the measurements, but it's pretty close.
faj
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Sun Jan 05, 2020 9:35 pm

Vanenbw wrote:
Sun Jan 05, 2020 9:05 pm
I was look looking at one of these graduated cylinder cups last week, not to use as a yuzamashi, but for measuring. If glass wont affect the taste of the water, I don't see why I could not use one as a yuzamashi.
I would encourage you to organize tests (blind if possible, quite easy if you have a bit of help on hand and are not aiming for scientific-grade "publishable" testing conditions) to compare the impact of various variables on your tea. Basically, you try changing one thing at a time, and see if you can (1) taste a difference and (2) identify a preference.

I started doing that myself recently, and find this fun and useful.
Vanenbw
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Mon Jan 06, 2020 6:17 am

faj wrote:
Sun Jan 05, 2020 9:35 pm
I would encourage you to organize tests (blind if possible, quite easy if you have a bit of help on hand and are not aiming for scientific-grade "publishable" testing conditions) to compare the impact of various variables on your tea. Basically, you try changing one thing at a time, and see if you can (1) taste a difference and (2) identify a preference.

I started doing that myself recently, and find this fun and useful.
Good advice. I have been doing that. I've turned the simplest of acts (drinking tea) into an overly complex analytic study. But it is fun, and it's not such a crazy idea when you consider all the variables that can affect the flavor of the tea.
swordofmytriumph
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Mon Jan 06, 2020 6:37 am

Plus it's always fun when you start setting up your "experiments" and feel oh-so-scientific. Or when you come home from the grocery store with six different brands of water and tell your family that it's for science.
Vanenbw
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Mon Jan 06, 2020 8:39 am

:lol: So true. Just yesterday I bought three different kinds of bottled water to try.
Vanenbw
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Tue Jan 07, 2020 1:14 pm

Okay, so I emailed Akira with some questions about the houhin I was going to purchase (160ml), but then I thought about it. I just bought a 160ml kyusu from Artistic Nippon. Do I really need a houhin right now? I'm wondering if I should go with one of his 300ml kobiwako pots. He even has a 290ml in stock, but I like the design of the 300ml better. Would there be an advantage of buying a houhin over the teapot?

I'm still not sure which I prefer, but I am anxious to try out one of these pots, whether in the form of a houhin or a side-handled pot.
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nasalfrog
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Tue Jan 07, 2020 2:16 pm

@Chip may have a larger Kobiwako available. Here is his tea swap post:

viewtopic.php?f=28&t=883

If you are wanting a larger Kobiwako pot, I think the kyusus are the only available option right now. Plus some of the advantages of a hohin (ease of loading leaves, cleaning) would be a part of a larger kyusu as well.
faj
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Tue Jan 07, 2020 2:17 pm

Vanenbw wrote:
Tue Jan 07, 2020 1:14 pm
Would there be an advantage of buying a houhin over the teapot?
A hohin obviously has less protruding geomety, so takes a bit less space. The spout and handle on a teapot probably are features that are more likely to be chipped or broken.

A hohin is very likely to have very quick flow. I do not know what the pour speed is on Kobiwako kyusus, that may be an issue or not.

A hohin is easier to clean.

If you want to pour to several cups and alternate between them to equalize brew strength without using an intermediary vessel as a "fair pot", a side-handle type teapot may be preferable. If brewing for one person, or if you are going to use an additional vessel, this is probably a moot point.
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