- Tea tray: A tray for holding or carrying utensils used in serving tea. It protects the tea table from getting burnt or wet.
- Teapot: A utensil for steeping tea, regarded as the most important utensil for brewing tea. There are various types of teapot according to their material and place of origin. We often use the purple -clay teapot for brewing Pu'er tea.
- Covered bowl: A utensil for steeping tea, with a similar function to the teapot, It consists of a lid, a bowl and a bowl saucer, and it is often made from porcelain, pottery or glass.
- Fairness cup; A utensil for taking tea liquor from the teapot and dividing the tea equally and fairly between each teacup. It is often made from glass, convenient for observing the thickness and appreciating the color of the tea
- Strainer: A utensil for filtering the brewed tea leaves when pouring tea liquor from the teapot to the teacups.
- Teacup: A small cup for appreciating tea liquor.
- Cup saucer: A small, flat plate to support a teacup, catch overflow or drips from the cup9 and to protect hands or the tea table from a hot cup.
Apart from the main teaware, there are several pieces of supporting teaware used in brewing tea.
- Tea knife or needle: A knife or needle shaped utensil for breaking or loosening compressed tea; often made of stainless steel, ox horn or hard wood.
- Tray for breaking tea: A tray to hold the compressed tea while breaking and loosening the tea with the tea knife or needle. The tea tray helps protect the tea table from being poked with the tea knife or needle as well as keeping the tea leaves from spilling.
- Tea holder; A utensil for holding and appreciating dry tea leaves.
- Electric kettle: A utensil for boiling water to brew tea. Nowadays the electric kettle has become a convenient utensil for boiling water, but we recommend boiling water in a copper or pottery teapot when brewing aged Puer tea.
- Teapot pad: A utensil for supporting the teapot.
- Tea towel: A cloth for wiping water or tea stains on the surface of a teapot or cups.
- Tea scoop: A utensil for taking tea leaves from a tea canister and measuring the amount of tea leaves required.
- Teaspoon: A utensil for moving tea leaves from a tea holder to a teapot or taking brewed tea leaves out of a teapot
- Tea pin: A utensil for dredging the inner net or the spout of a teapot to remove used tea leaves.
- Tea tongs: A stainless steel or wooden utensil for gripping tea cups.
- Tea funnel: A utensil put over the mouth of a teapot to extend the mouth area, preventing spillage while putting tea leaves into the teapot .
- Tea serving tray: A tray to hold teacups, bowls or tea refreshments and serve them to the guests.
- Water bowl: A utensil for holding discarded water after washing tea leaves and teaware.
The Purple-clay Tea ware and Porcelain Teaware
In modern times, we usually use three types of teaware for brewing tea: purple-clay teaware, porcelain teaware, and glass teaware. Each of these teawares has a comparatively different effect on the color, aroma and flavor of the brew, In conclusion,glass teaware is transparent and non-absorbent, and therefore is best suited to appreciate the look of the tea liquor. Purple-clay teaware preserves heat well and is ideal for bringing out the flavor of the tea. And porcelain teaware is moderate in water absorbability and thermal conductivity making it perfect to appreciate the aroma of the tea.
For brewing Puer tea, we often choose porcelain or purple-clay teaware. Porcelain brings out the aged aroma of Puer tea, and purple-clay encourages the bright color and the mellow flavor of Pu'er. As the flavor of Puer is heavy and rich, and it can be brewed many times, we usually use a large-volume teapot so that the tea leaves can brew well. The color of aged Puer tea liquor is bright and red, a glass fairness cup is ideal for appreciating this rich color. For 2 or 3 people, we recommend using a purple-clay teapot with a volume above 160ml. For beginners, we recommend using a porcelain teapot since the method and skills for brewing tea with a porcelain teapot are easier to learn, and beginners can easily control the ratio of tea to water and the steeping time.