I seem to have a collection of awesome performance jianshui clay teapots. First up is Bitterleaf Tea’s White Jianshui Zitao Purple Clay mini teapot in Shipiao shape.
As per Bitterleaf Tea, “Each of these teapots are made from 100% Jianshui zitao purple clay. Although it’s called purple clay, zitao is actually considered a 5 colour clay, consisting of purple, red, white, yellow and green/cyan. These pots are made from naturally occurring white clay.”
I purchased this clay teapot mostly due to the fast pour time of 4-5 seconds and perfect size of 95ml. At the time I was in hunt mode for a young sheng pot. In person, White Jianshui Zitao Shipiao Teapot has clean lines, a good weight, and a rewarding feel to it. The handle is comfortable to hold while pouring.
This teapot feels like it was made with precision, just look at those filter holes.
I seem drawn to light or black coloured pots over the standard red and purple ones. However, light coloured pots have the downfall of showing any tea stains dribbling down the side.
The White Jianshui Zitao Shipiao Teapot is thickly walled. As with most jianshui, this teapot is RIPPING hot and retains heat well once preheated. Shape and pour time was great for young sheng, however, the hot ripping quality makes it a bit dicey. Once I get rolling, this teapot churns out some great sheng. Later infusions as well as any mishap over brewing, and this teapot will scald any young leaf to bitter mush. That said, this jianshui zitao pot does young sheng decently, but you are playing with fire. This teapot would be a killer black, shou, aged white, and aged sheng pot – any tea you will boil and want heat retention. I have since found a young sheng pot I found works even better, so I could reassign my shipiao to something else, but I am lazy and have many teapots sitting in “the void”. Jianshui isn’t that porous, so reassigning another tea will be easy.
You might be able to get your hands on a White Jianshui Zitao Shipiao Teapot. Bitterleaf Tea has listed for sale this same pot (in black and white) again a few times since I purchased mine, as well as different shapes such as xishi and longdan.