Wednesday, November 4, 2009
Learning how to properly handle a gaiwan is rather difficult. So here is some advice for those starting out and learning their own technique. First things first, before leaf hits the gaiwan, first pratice gripping the gaiwan and pouring while keeping a good grip on both the gaiwan and the lid.
Once you are used to handling and holding the gaiwan, move on to icecubes and water. Why icecubes and water? Well simply put its easier to get burned then frost bitten. And you just have to think in analog that if the gaiwan is very cold where you are holding it it will be very hot holding it the same way brewing tea. So pratice pouring the water out of the gaiwan using ice cubes and water in the gaiwan a few times and try and have a steady flow, but somewhat minimal, as to not allow leaves out when pouring.
This is very important so you don't break your gaiwan, after praticing with ice water, warm it up in your hands and let it warm up slowly before adding hot water, as ceramics are prone to cracking when temperatures change to rapidly.
Gaiwans take pratice and in my mind really stress the gong fu like method to tea production, as it takes much more skill to use a gaiwan properly then to use a yixing pot.