Patience

I remember when I first bought this teapot, I was quite excited. It had a nice patina on it already, as it was used, and it was the perfect size for me. As you can see, I’m still using it for puerh, as I have since the day of the purchase. It’s been….. about two years since I got it. During this time, it went through some changes, and I remember, to my dismay, that the patina started peeling off a little. The original patina, it turns out, was somehow more like a little film of shine on top of the pot itself. When I rubbed the pot, it would rub off a little. Gradually, there was a little ring near the bottom of the pot as well as some lines forming underneath the spout. The patina was cracking, so to speak.

So I decided to rub off all of the patina, which I did.

That happened in Beijing. I remember I spent probably half an hour doing it, and when it was done, the pot became a lot duller. I wondered to myself if I did the right thing.

Now, after another year of use, the pot has gradually taken on a bit of a shine again, but the type of shine is different. It’s no longer the rather glossy shine that it used to have, but instead has a slightly dull surface, but you can sort of tell it is not quite “dull” when you look at the pot.

I don’t usually rub my pots when I use them, and don’t really do anything these days to actively try to season them. I just use them. Over time, I’ve discovered that that’s probably the best way to let them season — regular and repeated (and careful) use will, eventually, give the pots a nice sheen. It just takes time and patience.


Comments

Patience — 5 Comments

  1. Do you sometimes pour tea (for example the rinsing-infusion) over your pots or do you only season them “from the inside” with just drinking from the pots?

  2. I’m guilty of pouring the rinse over the pot. That’s the only tea it ever sees on the outside. These days I don’t even pour water on the pots anymore.

  3. i do the same, roughly. i pour the rinse on the pot, but I also often discard the “dregs” of a cup or pitcher–the last millimeter or two of tea mixed with all the little leaf bits–on the pot. I also often, but not always, use one last infusion to rinse the interior of the pot and pour what’s left on top.

  4. When cleaning a pot, I like to use a brush dipped in hot tea (from the leaves that’s just been dumped out) and brush the exterior. I let it dry like that. It leaves a dull shine…like an even coating of tea on the outside when the pot has dried.

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