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ashmanra said

Cast Iron Tea Pots

I am considering purchasing a cast iron tea pot and warmer for my oolongs. I love the dragonfly one at Teavana, but think it is odd that the dragonfly image is intruded upon by the handle. Other companies who make this style pot have the dragonfly on the side. Any thoughts on this design? I am a bit wary of buying any other than the Teavana one because I would be buying without having seen or touched the pot, and won’t really know for sure if it is of good quality. Any recommendations out there?

27 Replies
Kristen said

I see what you are saying with the dragonfly/handle thing with Teavana. I still like the pot! I have the Cherry Natura cast iron pot in blue from Teavana and really enjoy using it. I looked at other websites too when searching for my pot but ended up purchasing from Teavana because it was of good quality and I was able to go to the store and see it. Good luck with what you decide!

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I’ve been considering a Teavana pot too. While their high pressure tea sales gives me hives, their merchandise seems high quality. I’m looking at the Shogun because I thought that might be better for smaller quantities. Imperial Dragon is cool too, unfortunately, both have been out of stock for a while now.

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I have the silver pine needles pot from Teavana and love it! (It was THE pot that really pushed me over into loose teas.) It cleans up nicely and still looks beautiful years later. I did get a couple of cast iron cups, too, which are all chipped up around the edges. I have no idea why as I hand washed them and dried them before putting them away. Now they’re rusted and I can’t use them anymore.

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ashmanra said

Paul, there is a large Imperial Dragon on eBay right now! It is $99, but it is the big one – I think 44 ounces. I was considering the black/gold dragonfly pot because the saleslady showed me how years of handling makes the dragonfly more and more gold colored – the one in the store has been in use for three years and the black paint is almost all gone from the dragonflies. She said her own at home is starting to shine at the back of the handle where she grips it to pick it up. I love that – the idea of the finish mellowing and changing through years of use. We also love nature including bugs and have praying mantises every year all summer in the house as pets, and I love to watch dragonflies.

I did look at the pine boughs pot from Harney and Sons as one of my options. The pine bough represents friendship and longevity, and while I don’t feel I am superstitious about the meanings of the symbolism on these, I do like that thought! My name means “loyal friend” and that is what I try to be, so that motif is appealing for that reason. As for longevity, well, I did jsut have a brush with breast cancer, but I’m all done with treatment now! :) I live in the pine tree state and my house is surrounded by pines. Maybe I should go with that one, either from Harney or Teavana.

Thanks for the tip about the cups. I had thought about buying them and changed my mind because I have some Teavana Japanese cups already that I figured I would use, and we usually use china cups or Beehouse cups. If I hadn’t read about your iron ones, quiltguppy, I would possibly have changed my mind back to getting them!

Relmaster said

I have the “Hobnail” 30 Oz cast iron tea pot, and I LOVE it!!! I would Highly… highly.. suggest that you ask the Teavana associate if you can buy a stainless steel mesh basket from the “40 Oz Hobnail teapot” …it reaches to the bottom of the 30 oz teapot so you can brew half-pots ( ie 15-16 oz) if you want to make small amounts/infusions of tea. I use the teapot much more that I can brew smaller infusions of tea!!

ashmanra said

Reimaster – I will ask about that! I have the largest dragonfly pot but the basket really isn’t as large as I would like for oolongs since the leaves expand so much, particularly the amount of leaf needed for such a large pot. If I get the smallest pot in the future, I think I will try using my larger pot infuser in it and see if it works.

Relmaster said

I bought a “Piao i” Tea infuser http://www.cantonteaco.com/teaware-1/brand/piao-i-tea-infusers/glass-teapot-infuser-large-1000ml-piao-i.html last month and I ABSOLUTELY LOVE IT!!! I use it everyday for brewing small infusions of my green and oolong teas!!! 5-10 drops of “stevia clear extract” in the bottom half,, 8 oz hot water over my oolong tea in the top half….3 minutes later push button..BAMM Awesome tea!!! Highly recommended!!

ashmanra said

Ooo, I have been looking at those on purepuer.com and watched the video on use. It looks great!

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I never even thought about Ebay! I wonder if Teavana imports from some of the same places in Japan as the online vendors? In addition to the Teavana branded Dragon, I also found a great set for only $60 – Shogun Cast Iron Tea Set Teapot 24oz Tetsubin 15465 http://r.ebay.com/7ura1b

I’ve bought my tetsubins and warmer through eBay! They have great options out there.

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Jill said

I received a beautiful cast iron pot from Teavana for Xmas. I’ve had my issues with expensive teapots before but didn’t expect it from Teavana. Barely one week later, I have black paint chipping around where the lid sits. I just returned it and got a new one. Looked fine in the store but as soon as I washed it (with soft sponge/gentle dish soap) and dried it, SAME THING. It makes me too nervous and saddens me but I will be returning it for good this time. The clerk told me he has only seen this happen 4x in the past four years. I’m questioning that.

Toddy said

Make that 5x because I received one for Christmas, too, and am taking it back tomorrow for the same reason. I haven’t even used dish soap on mine, only hot water and then I dry it thoroughly. Even then I don’t put the strainer back in it until I’m ready to make another pot of tea.

When I bought mine, they said not to use anything on it to clean it. Just put in fresh water, rinse it around, and pour out. I have not had any isdues with mine yet!

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Wonks said

I saw this green Primula pot at Dillard’s. I don’t personally like them (personal thing shrug), but a quick search took me to amazon. I will say the enamel was absolutely perfect, the lid was tight…etc. Maybe worth checking out.

http://www.amazon.com/Primula-Cast-Iron-28-Ounce-Green/dp/B002OOWKE4

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Will said

I would avoid buying an enameled cast iron pot for making tea. These pots are not traditionally used for tea brewing in Japanese or Chinese culture, and you will get as good or better results in ceramic, stoneware, or glass vessels. These pots are frequently sold by merchants like Teavana simply because they make a lot of money on them.

Unglazed cast iron kettles are hard to come by in the US, but these were traditionally used quite a bit for boiling water for tea, rather than for tea brewing.

ashmanra said

True, Will. That is how I mostly use mine. I make my tea in my Beehouse pots and pour it into the tetsubin over a warmer to keep it hot for a very long time. That is for when I know I want to drink a tea for the better part of the day and keep it hot. I also use it as my hot water pot when brewing with my little gong fu set or my Yixing set.

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noordelijk said

Teavana cast iron tea pots are probably going to be just as good of quality as other cast iron tea pots. Reading what will said though, if you don’t want enameled cast iron then don’t get a teavana one. Enamel is good for tea brewing though because it keeps the iron from getting into your tea.

I have seen this teapot before and I don’t recall finding the design of the dragonflies weird. If you’re afraid of breakability in this design I wouldn’t worry about that either. I’ve seen someone drop a cast iron cup on a hard floor before and it was completely undamaged. This stuff is tough!

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ashmanra said

Thank you, Noordelijk! I actually got the Teavana dragonfly pot about nine months ago and it has been very nice to use. I have the warmer as well, so I use the large pot when I want a large portion of tea to sip on all morning and it stays hot and good. I have not had any problems with it. I am even thinking of buying the matching small pot!

noordelijk said

Maybe you have them already, but I’d get matching cups and some cute coasters before I’d get another kettle! You should go into a teavana store to be able to mix and match them all together. Its fun :)

Expensive but yes fun!

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