I was ecstatic when I pulled the 15 kysusu out of the kiln. Having spent a good week making them, as well as remaking all the lids, I was pretty stoked when they emerged unscathed and nicely reduced after a 12-hour firing.
Before Mathew Kammerer, head chef at the Harbor House Inn, came to pick them up, I had lined up the kyusus in three tight rows, as if they were ready to do battle pouring tea at his Michelin star restaurant. I was proud and excited to have created something new, something that had its roots in a month-long residency at La Meridiana in Italy, now manifesting in a new line of work.
While Mathew was on his way to the studio, I though it would be prudent to test they way they poured. I am generally proud of my teapots, and often insist that my customers try them out before buying, so I took one aside and filled it to the brim with water and gave it a go.
It didn't go as I expected. One would have had more luck directing Niagara Falls into a horse trough than they could stopping any liquid from dripping all over my table top, and no amount of technique was going to fix it. This wasn't the first disappointed I've every had after firing some pots, and it won't be the last. But there's never been a time when I was so convinced that everything was perfect, only to discover that all the pots would have to be made over again.
When Mathew finally arrived and tried the kyusus himself, he was humorously empathic. "I'm happy for you Cliff," he offered. "Success is always sweeter when it doesn't come easy. It happens to me all the time."
We had a good laugh at that, and determined I got back to work on a different style spout, this one shaped like a tear drop. After four tries, the last one passed the test.
Before testing the kudus, I was convinced that they would pass the pouring test.
I made four kyushu after the other ones failed, and the last one passed the test.