PLEASE NOTE THAT THE SATURATION OF THE PAINT IN THE ENGRAVINGS VARIES FROM POT TO POT AND THE ONE PICTURED IS THE STRONGEST COLOUR POSSIBLE.
Authentic Huang Jin Duanni pot made from clay from Huang Long Shan mountain half-handmade in Yixing. This pot has the most amazing effect on all tea - softens, thickens and sweetens without taking away too many bright notes. It is like brewing everything in soft water making the most easy-drinking sessions imaginable. Read on to learn more about its advantages and disadvantages.
Duanni is one of three broad categories of Yixing Zisha clay. The first and most common is Zini (purple), another is Hongni (Red clay) which covers all red pots including the famous Zhuni and then you have Duanni which is normally made from a blend of green-grey ores which turn yellow when firing. This pot is made from Huang Jin Duanni.
The shape of this pot mimics the old imperial lanterns. The name Gong Deng (贡灯) means 'Tribute Lantern' as this shape were exclusively for the Royal family in the Qing Dynasty. The shape is suited for all tea types.
Half-handmade means that it is made by hand but utilises moulded shapes to assist the production. It is a great performing pot and a perfect way to add high-grade Zisha clay to your collection without spending the huge numbers for fully handmade.
Duanni is usually one of the most porous clays with a pronounced effect (although a lot depends on the original ores and temperature of firing). Duanni is also well known for its excellent heat retention. This means that it is most often suited to teas which have a strong character and love hot brewing - think aged Sheng, Shu and Yancha.
However I have tested this pot with all tea types and, remarkably, they all work because the minerals in the pot are relatively transparent on flavour - maintaining the bright notes while not significantly adding any of its own minerality. It is a great 'all-star' pot in this respect.
The big changes that it makes to a tea are in its softening and sweetening. Every tea which you make with this pot will be smooth and almost sugary. Any astringency, strong punchiness and strong woody, stony or baked notes are radically dialled down. This could be desirable or undesirable depending on your tea and your mood.
If I feel like I want a smooth and easy-drinking session or if I have a tea which is overly 'aggressive' in astringency, minerality or woodiness then this pot would be my first choice. But, if I am looking for a session with some physical punch and pulling and I want the taste to be sharp and clean then I would not use this Duanni. It all depends on you and your guests (this is a great pot to introduce people to more edgy teas like Sheng).
Another decision which needs to be made about this pot is if you are going to use it as an 'all-star' or save it for one tea type. On the one hand, more than any other clay, this pot is suited for all tea types that I have tasted but it is also really porous making it a perfect candidate for seasoning with one tea style.
All in all a tea pot which is very dependent on YOU and I love it for that very reason.
The capacity is about 160ml.