Buyiing poor quality Yixing/clay teapots

A local Asian store sells what I can only describe as fake or very poor quality Yixing teapots. You can tell by looking at them, touching them and certainly by the price or maybe $3 -4.

But I’m looking for a couple of “disposable” tea pots, like for travel or the office where they tend to get broken easily. And so I’m wondering, even assuming that these are as bad as I think they are (or maybe even worse), at the price and for the purpose, can I really go wrong? At least they are unglazed clay pots. They may not age or improve the taste of tea, but for day in day out quality tea, why not?

Can you give me some reasons why not?

3 Replies
Dag Wedin said

If it´s that cheap there´s no reason why you couldn´t just buy a few and do some testing. try them side by side with a glas or porcelain pot.
Let your own tastebuds decide :)

And clay does change the taste of tea from day one. It´s very apparent when you do side by side testing. Finding the type of clay that matches your teas and tastebuds thats the hard part :)

Login or sign up to post a message.

I’m actually more concerned about lead or something else in the clay. I vaguely recall reading that lead can be found in the glazes of clay pottery and plates from China and Mexico, and these pots aren’t glazed inside or out. Then it occurred to me that there might be some other contaminant in the clay, perhaps used to darken a lighter color clay to look like zisha.

Unfortunately there have been a spate of news stories in recent years of Chinese manufacturers saving money by producing all sorts of foods, toys or building materials, etc. with contaminants that prove unhealthy. I’ve never heard of it in teapots but it’s kind of made me feel uneasy about going ahead and buying any of these.

I was wondering if anyone had heard recently of such a thing in cheap teapots.

Uniquity said

I suppose this isn’t comforting, but there could be lead. I imagine you would have to get it tested to be sure one way or another, but that changes the ‘cheap’ factor. Of course, there could always be lead in more expensive pots, it just depends on the integrity/knowledge of the maker and seller. Tricky.

Login or sign up to post a message.

Login or sign up to leave a comment.