Zisha Tea Pot - Christmas Gift

Here we go - it is Christmas, the tradtional time of year to show off and brag with Christmas presents.

My wife gave me a budget to spend on tea or tea ware. I asked Stéphane (Tea Masters Blog) for a tea pot that goes well with sheng puercha ... and I spent the entire budget on one little teapot, which arrived well in time.

Here it is:

When the pot arrived in the middle of November (my wife likes to plan ahead and start in good time), I just checked if it had survived the shipping - which it had in good condition thanks to the good wrapping ... and protection by a load of tea sample packs. Merci Stéphane! Then I put it away and waited for yesterday evening. Gosh, that was a major act of patience - but I didn't touch the box untill yesterday, lest I break my gift before Christmas Eve.

Yesterday evening I soaked the pot in cold water, brought it to a boil and let it cool down. Today was the great day: the first tea in my treasure pot.

I thought about brewing some of the 2008 Mangfei, as I konw that tea quite well and might best detect, how the pot influences the brew. But I feel a cold creeping up with a sore throat, so I rather craved for something darker, which turned out to be the 2003 Mengku.
Everything set up and ready to brew
My first post on that tea in this blog states, how little nuanced it turned out when brewed in a claypot (which I usually brew baozhong and similar teas in). But today the tea was everything I wished for: so many different layers of flavour from old wood, potatoes, mint and even camphor. But the best about todays brew was the mouthfeel - I could almost chew on the tea, there was so much substantiallity to it. To cut my ramblings short: satisfaction in a tea was brought to a new level!
Infusion 11 or 12, the cup has become much lighter
At first I was a little worried - to empty the pot takes 15 seconds. As my usual steeping times in early infusions is shorter, I was afraid to overbrew the tea and used less leaves. But even when I got distracted and infusion 7 brewed for about two minutes, the tea turned out absolutely enjoyable and far from bitter. It seems like the clay transforms astringency to density, giving that 'substantial' note to the tea's mouthfeel.

So, let us find out who made this magic pot of rather dark zisha material in classical shuiping shape:
Can you identtify the potter's mark?
Well - there is none. For a teapot costing my entire christmas budget, you might expect me to bragg on about the famous artist who produced it. But I don't know.
And I don't care. It just delivers great sheng - exactly what I got it for.

Without any claim on objectivity I think that this is the best Christmas gift I could get this year. How about you? Hope Santa was kind to you and gave you the right stuff for wonderful tea sessions. Merry Christmas everyone!

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