Deep Dive: An Exploration of Temperature & Heat Retention [Inbetweenisode 189]

This is a non-tea drinking episode that explores a topically related topic to tea. In this episode, I perform a series of very simple tests that explore the interaction between heat and a number of various factors.

I use a variety of different devices (small gaiwans, large gaiwans, yixing, larger pots) and measured temperature immediately, after a minute, and then after five minutes. These experiments were repeated a few times.

Topics explored include pre-heating, does yixing retain heat more, high pours, filling up half your vessel and how quickly you may want to reboil your kettle.


4 responses to “Deep Dive: An Exploration of Temperature & Heat Retention [Inbetweenisode 189]”

  1. Well this definitely makes me rethink pre-heating, I guess I’ll try to do this more often. These results make me think about getting a thermometer to try and test it with grandpa style drinking. I’ve got 2 big clay pots that are more than 500ml and I’ll usually just fill it completely then drink half and pour boiling water in again. Should be interesting to see how hot it will stay.

  2. Great job on this! I am guilty of the half-ass preheat and thought it was no big deal until now, yikes!

    I love how you did the half-filled vessels, the results were quite shocking! Do not listen to a vendor trying to push that gorgeous but too big teapot saying you can just fill it halfway. Would love to see Jianshui in the mix. My Jianshui always seems ripping hot delicate tea wrecker, a popular teapot since many western faced shops sell them and they are cheaper.

    A solution for heat loss for longer infusions would be coffee cup warmer for their gaiwan or teapot. It doesn’t look pretty, but likely could keep temps around 200F.

  3. James,

    These results are completely unsurprising to anyone who has learned gong fu cha under a teamster in Asia or from visiting enough teahouses there. You can snicker about or roll your eyes about “the teamster” all you want but it is these little things that you learn and know that are completely lost on someone isolated and learning tea from blogs and videos here in the West.

    Thanks for drawing attention to these otherwise unmentioned things…


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