One of my uncles is from Yixing, in Jiangsu province. This area is famous, most of all, for their clay teapots. Why? Because the terroir here, namely the clay, is perfectly suited to making these fabulous teapots. What makes this marriage a fateful match is not only the fact that the clay holds heat well, and is especially conducive to shaping and etching paintings and calligraphy - it is also porous enough for the tea to infuse into its walls, and subsequently make your brews taste better and better with age.
He gave me this teapot, during my trip back this April. Very elaborately decorated. I'm still in the process of seasoning the teapot, making sure that a layer of tea extract develops on the inside walls. Four months in, I'm making some progress, but much more brewing needs to be done. I'll keep you posted.