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Girmscheid handmade genuine salt glaze beer steins

Hand Made - Genuine Salt Glazed | Made in Germany

German made salt glaze master potter adds the salt

Each piece is made of high quality Westerwald clay of exclusive quality.  The stoneware gets its salt glaze from real coarse-grained salt, which is placed in the open fire of chamber furnaces at a temperature of over 1,200 degrees Celsius.  The different finishes and color nuances of salt glazed mugs, steins and cups give each piece an individual touch. The Girmscheid pottery is created in a complicated burn process - in the old tradition.  It is particularly resilient; microwave and dishwasher safe (items without lids ONLY).

Salt glaze steins, pottery mugs are added to the kiln using traditional methods

What is Genuine Salt Glazing?

Salt firing is a traditional specialty in the production process of stoneware.  The firing temperature is 1,220 degrees C.  The firing kiln uses an open flame fueled with wood, oil or gas and thus achieves a surplus of carbon in the upper part of the kiln.  When the highest temperature is reached common table salt is added though the outlets on the top of the kiln.  The salt then crystallizes and because of the high temperature immediately fuses with the clay.  In this process the sodium of the salt merges together with the quartz of the clay to silicate and generates the typical orange-peel like salt glaze texture.

Optic of the saltglaze

The traditional glaze colors used for salt glazing are limited because of the high temperatures and the atmospheric condition in the firing kiln when the salt is applied.  The glaze colors are produced with the use of various metal oxides.  Common are cobalt oxide for blue, ferric oxide for yellow to brown - red and manganese oxide for brown colors.

Girmscheid hand made pottery - master artist at work

Value of Salt Glaze

The production of high quality salt glaze stoneware needs, especially during the firing procedure, much more material, workmanship and energy expenditures than any other stoneware production process.  This is the main reason why salt glazed items are more expensive when you compare them with their equal in a standard glazed stoneware product.

Individual Character

The salt glaze stoneware production needs a lot of experience and can only be produced by a few potters.  Salt glazed items are valued by experts and collectors worldwide and each hand crafted piece is unique because of the special firing and skilled artistic workmanship involved.

Special Characteristics of the Salt Glaze

Salt glazed stoneware meets the requirements of the German food and drug association for safety and sufficiency for use.

  •  Produced from lead free materials
  • Acid and alkaline proof
  • Neutral in taste and completely waterproof
  • High value of practical use
  • Can be used in the microwave (ONLY items without lids)
  • Dishwasher proof (ONLY items without lids)
  • Stores heat and keeps cool
  • Constant quality - "Made in Germany"