Puzzled wannabe Yixing buyer

Post Reply
Tetsubin
Posts: 39
Joined: Wed Aug 14, 2019 11:21 am
Location: Sweden

Sun Oct 20, 2019 2:47 pm

Shine Magical wrote:
Sun Oct 20, 2019 2:42 pm
no
I second that
User avatar
Baisao
Posts: 691
Joined: Mon Dec 11, 2017 5:17 pm
Location: Austin, TX

Sun Oct 20, 2019 3:42 pm

Shine Magical wrote:
Sun Oct 20, 2019 2:42 pm
no
I agree but with one caveat. A gaiwan is about as fast as you can get, but I feel the splashing of sloppy pouring tea can have a negative affect on the brew.

It’s subtle so maybe it’s confirmation bias: sloppy technique results in sloppy taste. I have the same feeling about the dramatic high pour technique that was popularized in the the West at festivals and on Instagram.
User avatar
Bok
Vendor
Posts: 3390
Joined: Wed Oct 04, 2017 8:55 am
Location: Taiwan

Sun Oct 20, 2019 7:40 pm

Similar to Baisao, I’d say it depends on the design of the vessel. Some fast pour pots do not deliver a good flow of water when poured slowly. Bad design one might say. I have a few older pots which would have the tea running down the body instead of the spout, so I need to do a fast tilt speed pour to avoid that.
User avatar
tingjunkie
Posts: 93
Joined: Tue Apr 17, 2018 7:39 pm

Mon Oct 21, 2019 2:51 am

Wow, OP, you have trust issues! When shopping for Yixing, that's not such a bad thing. :lol:

FWIW, I've been collecting Yixing myself for about 10 years now, and have been very lucky to handle lots of really nice pots, AND to see lots of junk ones in several Chinatowns across the US. I doubt you'll be able to trust it, but in my random-guy-on-a-forum opinion, get a vintage F1 from Emmet, or a new pot from Mud and Leaves. I haven't personally bought from M&L yet, but I have emailed Patrick to ask a couple questions, and his customer service and passion for good clay are excellent and self-evident. I think either one of those options will be a 110% safe way to get your first Yixing that you'll still be using in 10 years time, and will teach you a whole lot.

Can't go wrong with a medium to high fired shui ping in the 80-100ml range. Some kind of zini or hongni. Enjoy the journey, and don't stress too much!
User avatar
pedant
Admin
Posts: 964
Joined: Fri Sep 29, 2017 4:35 am
Location: Chicago
Contact:

Mon Oct 21, 2019 3:09 am

💡 pro tip 💡
if it's not a cheap pot (or cup), i suggest asking for pictures of the actual item before buying.
even if a vendor's site says "1 in stock" or something, verify first that you're not looking at stock photos.
assumptions can lead to disappointment.
User avatar
OCTO
Posts: 550
Joined: Wed Aug 15, 2018 6:25 pm
Location: Penang, Malaysia

Mon Oct 21, 2019 4:03 am

WOW!! Very interesting thread!!.. Has been a while since there was a thread this hot!.. hahahaha....

@faj

I would say... @Baisao , @Bok , @pedant and many others have pretty much said everything there is needed to say.... I would just add a simple provoking thought...

Every teapot made is very different on it's own. I would say that it's almost impossible to hit the right or perfect pot from the very first purchase. Like I've always said, Yixing and Tea Appreciation is a journey with many ups and downs, glorious satisfaction with ocassional potholes and bumps... Do not fear making a mistake on your first purchase, it's often more educational than a reckless misadventure. No one pot will ever perform at it's best when it's brand new. ZiSha is porous and will often need a length of time to season and bring up to perform at a satisfactory level. What is more important is to understand the clay and how it affects the end results of your palette's preference. Teapot shape, size, pour rate, height are all very subjective to individual's preference on how you want your tea taste when it hits your palettes.

If you're feeling confused at the end of this thought provoking paragraph, you're on the right track.... :D :D :D Don't over analyse, don't worry too much, always purchase within your budget and enjoy the journey. Remember, it's friendship over a cup, one sip at a time.

Cheers!!
faj
Posts: 340
Joined: Mon Oct 14, 2019 6:45 am
Location: Quebec

Mon Oct 21, 2019 6:46 am

tingjunkie wrote:
Mon Oct 21, 2019 2:51 am
Wow, OP, you have trust issues! When shopping for Yixing, that's not such a bad thing. :lol:
@tingjunkie, I am not sure I should trust your opinion on this matter. :D

I would say the person I trust the least in all of this is myself. Inexperience and all.
tingjunkie wrote:
Mon Oct 21, 2019 2:51 am
I doubt you'll be able to trust it, but in my random-guy-on-a-forum opinion, get a vintage F1 from Emmet, or a new pot from Mud and Leaves.
I haven't personally bought from M&L yet, but I have emailed Patrick to ask a couple questions, and his customer service and passion for good clay are excellent and self-evident.
This is a recurring theme : many people recommend M&L, but I think I have yet to read about one single actual customer of theirs. I too have emailed Patrick, and my experience mirrors yours. Between that and their website, they seem to be talking the talk, I agree.
faj
Posts: 340
Joined: Mon Oct 14, 2019 6:45 am
Location: Quebec

Mon Oct 21, 2019 6:53 am

OCTO wrote:
Mon Oct 21, 2019 4:03 am
Every teapot made is very different on it's own. I would say that it's almost impossible to hit the right or perfect pot from the very first purchase. Like I've always said, Yixing and Tea Appreciation is a journey with many ups and downs, glorious satisfaction with ocassional potholes and bumps... Do not fear making a mistake on your first purchase, it's often more educational than a reckless misadventure.
If you're feeling confused at the end of this thought provoking paragraph, you're on the right track.... :D :D :D
I can confirm, based on my confusion level, I am on the right track. It seems like it might be a long race though... :D

I understand that there are many variables involved in the making and drinking of tea, that they all interact, and that the teapot is but one of these variables. So yes, it makes sense that your first Yixing pot is very unlikely to be "the one", even if carefully chosen. I am just trying to keep clear of the most glaring rookie mistakes and unsafe products (which, it appears based on above comments, may not be as prevalent as I first believed).
User avatar
OCTO
Posts: 550
Joined: Wed Aug 15, 2018 6:25 pm
Location: Penang, Malaysia

Mon Oct 21, 2019 8:14 am

faj wrote:
Mon Oct 21, 2019 6:53 am
I can confirm, based on my confusion level, I am on the right track. It seems like it might be a long race though... :D
It's a Marathon with a constantly shifting finish line.
faj wrote:
Mon Oct 21, 2019 6:53 am
I understand that there are many variables involved in the making and drinking of tea, that they all interact, and that the teapot is but one of these variables. So yes, it makes sense that your first Yixing pot is very unlikely to be "the one", even if carefully chosen. I am just trying to keep clear of the most glaring rookie mistakes and unsafe products (which, it appears based on above comments, may not be as prevalent as I first believed).
I believe there are some teashops in Chinatown in Quebec where you can walk-in and and have a first hand experience in handling a teapot. Frankly, it's very difficult to determine authenticity of a Yixing teapot based solely on photos alone. Very often online purchases are always a gamble. Of course, reputable online stores mentioned here are good starting points.

Do share your purchases and findings here. There are many experienced forummers here who can give you a pointer or two.

Cheers!
User avatar
Bok
Vendor
Posts: 3390
Joined: Wed Oct 04, 2017 8:55 am
Location: Taiwan

Mon Oct 21, 2019 8:17 am

To repeat myself: for a first Yixing, I would recommend a Hongni. In my opinion it is a clay that improves many many teas and less likely to really disappoint.

Not too big is advisable, otherwise you might easily getting unfavourable issues with cooking leaves. Thin walled if possible, 80-100 is Goldilocks for many.

I would wait for Zhuni to gather some more experience.

The other kinds of clays can be more tricky to match I think.
User avatar
OCTO
Posts: 550
Joined: Wed Aug 15, 2018 6:25 pm
Location: Penang, Malaysia

Mon Oct 21, 2019 8:37 am

Bok wrote:
Mon Oct 21, 2019 8:17 am
To repeat myself: for a first Yixing, I would recommend a Hongni. In my opinion it is a clay that improves many many teas and less likely to really disappoint.

Not too big is advisable, otherwise you might easily getting unfavourable issues with cooking leaves. Thin walled if possible, 80-100 is Goldilocks for many.

I would wait for Zhuni to gather some more experience.

The other kinds of clays can be more tricky to match I think.
:D :D
User avatar
Bok
Vendor
Posts: 3390
Joined: Wed Oct 04, 2017 8:55 am
Location: Taiwan

Mon Oct 21, 2019 8:48 am

OCTO wrote:
Mon Oct 21, 2019 8:37 am
:D :D
I know, I know, some people have different much more voluminous Goldilocks :lol:
faj
Posts: 340
Joined: Mon Oct 14, 2019 6:45 am
Location: Quebec

Mon Oct 21, 2019 9:34 am

OCTO wrote:
Mon Oct 21, 2019 8:14 am
I believe there are some teashops in Chinatown in Quebec where you can walk-in and and have a first hand experience in handling a teapot. Frankly, it's very difficult to determine authenticity of a Yixing teapot based solely on photos alone. Very often online purchases are always a gamble. Of course, reputable online stores mentioned here are good starting points.
Unfortunately, I live quite far away from Montreal, where the is a Chinatown. I might go at some point in the future during a family trip, but not in the foreseeable future. There is a "serious" tea boutique in Quebec City (a branch of Camellia Sinensis) I went to (before beginning to research Yixing) that has a selection of teapots including a few Yixing pots : this is my only "hands-on" experience, and there were not many pots I felt drawn towards (most were too ornate for my taste). Purchasing online probably is my best bet right now.
swordofmytriumph
Posts: 399
Joined: Sun Dec 16, 2018 5:19 am
Location: Seattle, USA

Mon Oct 21, 2019 9:46 am

faj wrote:
Mon Oct 21, 2019 6:46 am
tingjunkie wrote:
Mon Oct 21, 2019 2:51 am
new pot from Mud and Leaves.
I haven't personally bought from M&L yet, but I have emailed Patrick to ask a couple questions, and his customer service and passion for good clay are excellent and self-evident.
This is a recurring theme : many people recommend M&L, but I think I have yet to read about one single actual customer of theirs. I too have emailed Patrick, and my experience mirrors yours. Between that and their website, they seem to be talking the talk, I agree.
Well, several of us have bought from them before and been very happy, we just have not bought yixing yet. Until now! I have just taken the plunge and bought one of their yixing, and when it arrives I will post a review for the benefit of our fair forum! :D By the way faj, I would say the reason nobody on the forum has bought yixing from them until now is because most everyone on this forum will only buy vintage as a rule, or are more into Japanese teapots. Personally, I don’t have the pockets for vintage, so new it is.
User avatar
Bok
Vendor
Posts: 3390
Joined: Wed Oct 04, 2017 8:55 am
Location: Taiwan

Mon Oct 21, 2019 10:13 am

@swordofmytriumph vintage does not need to be more expensive. If you check out Emmet‘s offers for example, they are quite often under 200$, which is not more than what you’d pay for a decent new Yixing.
Post Reply