We are happy to announce our new tea cupboard addition, the Gourd Teapot. Made by our close friend and the amazingly talented potter, Fu Zhen Yuan.
The inspiration for this teapot is the large fleshy fruit, the gourd. In Chinese the word for gourd is 葫芦 (hi lu), which is close to the pronunciation 福禄 (fu lu) meaning happiness and luck.
This beautiful looking chubby chocolate teapot (definitely not made of chocolate), is such a wonderful tea vessel. It is wide enough to fit long tea leaves, and its smooth edges fit perfectly in the hand. An ideal teapot for Raw Puerhs, or your favourite tea.
The Gourd Teapot is made from what is considered the best clay in China, Yixing Clay. The minerals within this clay interact with the tea, bringing you the best possible brew. The teapot imparts no odour or flavour, keeping your tea fresh and pure.
Visually the Gourd Teapot is stunning, a real work of art. It has a luxurious chocolate brown hue, and its unglazed finished gives it a natural feel.
This teapot is half handmade by Fu using simple and traditional methods. Small details indicate his talent, such as the top of the spout, handle and body all perfectly align. The tea pours out consistently, and theres a small hole at the top of the lid which allows you to control the flow of the tea. If you put your finger over this hole, then the tea flow is stopped. Release your finger and the tea continues to pour.
One last thing, usually a potter engraves their mark at the bottom of the teapot. Instead we decided to have our original "classic" Black Cloud Tea logo to celebrate our original collaboration. It's not often we get to work with Fu, so we wanted to celebrate our connection together!
- Volume: ≈150ml
- Size: 8cm (h) x 12cm (w)
- Weight: 114g
- Clay: JiangPo Ni (Zisha Variety)
- Filter: 7 hole, built-in
- Packaged in a luxurious and protective blue box.
Before first use we highly recommend rinsing the teapot thoroughly or seasoning it in boiling water for 10-15minutes. Yixing teapots are very porous so after each use, rinse and clean with cold water only. Do not use any soap or coarse sponges, as these can spoil or tarnish the clay. Then dry thoroughly with a clean cloth. Make sure your teapot is fully air dry, inside and out, before storing away in a box or a cabinet.
Yixing clay pots are prized for improving the texture and flavour of some types of tea. Often making the tea taste smoother, rounder and more mellow. As Yixing clay is porous, oils from the tea leaves will naturally coat and soak into the clay over time, which can improve the flavour of your tea. Therefore you can choose to dedicate your teapot to a single type of tea. We like to use Yixing clay for darker teas, like roasted or aged oolongs, ripe puerh, raw puerh and black tea.
Note: These teapots are handmade so small variations in capacity and experience may occur. We check each teapot before shipping.
Meet Fu Zhen Yuan
“When I first met Sasha from Black Cloud at my studio in Yixing, we weren’t talking about tea; it was music and we both found that we shared a love for abstract aesthetics. I liked his music, he liked my work."
I first met Fu in Yixing, China, 2019. Not that long ago, but due to the world changing so much since then it feels like a lifetime has passed. At that time I was traveling around China, hanging out with old friends and making new ones. Half travelling for fun, half searching for teas to bring back with me. I visited Yixing for the first time and i wanted to experience the Yixing teapot world. A good friend of mine introduced me to Fu, and we got on straight away. What I enjoyed was his youthful energy and passion to try and find new ways to be creative in a very traditional field. Making Yixing teapots is dominated by an older generation of teaware makers who are highly skilled and have a lifetime of dedication. What appealed to me to work with Fu was he wanted to be a new generation of ceramists who focused on combining traditions with modern aesthetics. His raw talent was evident when hanging out in his workshop that first time in 2019. I got to see him at work and knew immediately we would be collaborating for some time.