Was thrilled to see ceramic bamboo tea cups pop up on Haystakt. The teacups are conceptualized by ceramic collective Weekend Worker's Ong Su Loon. Totally fascinated by its creation process whereby the cups are moulded from bamboo stems. Ong Su Loon detailed the creation process and wanted a tea cup that "maintains the organic shape and texture of the interior of the bamboo stem". I immediately ordered two which arrived in the cutest wicker baskets.
I think the artist washed the tea cups prior to sending them out. Unwrapped and found them squeaky clean. However, for good measure, I ran a gentle detergent over the cups, then stood them in a light white tea for half an hour, just to rid them of any lingering clay residue and smells. Was quite eager to use them immediately. Obviously they aren't symmetrical. There's the beauty of handcrafted cups. Meticulous attention paid to its design. I like them this way. The exterior of the cups was left unglazed. There were a few boxes of tea delivered while I was away. Time to open them up and get some brewing going. The tea cups first contents were a light caramel-nutty 2014 pre-Qingming Shifeng Long Jing (明前狮峰龙井).
Now that I've felt the cups and used them, I wish I had ordered two more in brown. :D They're perfect, absolutely perfect, to hold tea. Although they're thin and might crack holding liquids beyond 85°C. One did, not during the prep but while holding the green tea, and leaked. A straight fine crack across the thinnest portion at the base indent. Haizzzz. What to do. These things happen. With the one good one left, I don't dare to use it for teas that require hotter water above 85°C. The volume of a cup is just nice for a 4.5 - 5oz Yixing clay teapot. Dunno what's the firing temperature used, but the glaze is just right for tea. Something about the interaction of ceramic and tea that makes the end result taste lovely. What fabulous pieces of art. Now, how do I buy more?