What is hare's fur glaze?

Hare's fur glaze is a term often encountered in the world of tea culture, particularly in relation to tea ware. It refers to a specific type of patina that develops on the surface of certain types of teaware, usually Yixing teapots, over time. This glaze is highly prized by tea enthusiasts for its unique aesthetic and perceived impact on the taste of tea.

The name "hare's fur" comes from the Chinese term for the phenomenon, which describes the fine, soft, and downy texture that resembles the fur of a hare. This patina is the result of tea oils and residues gradually accumulating and oxidizing on the surface of the pot. With repeated use and proper care, the pot develops a rich, lustrous sheen that tea lovers find highly desirable.

The formation of hare's fur glaze is a slow and gradual process. It requires regular use of the teapot with the same type of tea, as different teas can affect the patina's development. The pot should be cleaned regularly with hot water to remove any built-up tea residues, but harsh detergents or abrasives should be avoided to prevent damaging the delicate surface.

The belief that hare's fur glaze can enhance the flavor of tea stems from the idea that the patina absorbs and retains the essence of the tea, which is then released back into the brew during subsequent uses. Whether this is a scientific fact or simply a romantic notion, there is no denying that the aesthetic appeal and cultural significance of a well-seasoned teapot with a beautiful hare's fur glaze are undeniable.

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