Tokoname was the location of one of the Six Ancient Kilns of Japan and is also famed for Buddhist and Shinto shrine statue artisans. Tokoname is often considered to be the sister city of Yixing.
Tokoname pottery is finalized with a slip coating. Slip is a water-thinned clay applied like a paint which is referred to as being “brushed.” The raw material has special iron, quartz, and mica content, which after firing, produces a lovely color. The special function of the Tokoname pots are heat reduction speed and low porosity so we can use a wide range of teas in one pot. This pot will season very slowly. In contrast to the clay and style of firing used in Yixing teapots, which is best reserved for one type of tea due to its ability to season well because of its porosity.
Sasame vs. Obiami filters
Two different types of mesh filters in the teapot spout are common: obiami and sasame. The obiami is based on a special type of mesh before mechanization in production. In the old days, makers would use a stick or pick-like tools to create evenly distributed spout holes in the clay. Sasame filters are metal screens in place of the ceramic holes. Our Fukugata kyusu is made with a machine that uses high speed air forces through a steel mold that makes the perfect perforation and angle for the sasame clay spout filter.
The kyusu is a traditional teapot ideal for brewing pure Japanese green teas. Many kyusu teapots are fashioned in a side-handle style known as yokode, which was originally developed for preparing tea while seated on tatami mats. As with brewing any tea, finding the right balance of water temperature, infusion time and proper amount of tea is very important. The Fukugata Kyusu is made of a brushed red clay and contains a clay mesh on the inside for straining.