Meticulously hand-curled spring Laoshan green tea yielding a potent, grassy long lasting brew with green bean sweetness. . . .
Mr. He was extremely proud to unveil his latest experiment when we visited his farm in Laoshan Village last autumn. We have consistently told him that his family is free to innovate and try out any ideas because we will buy up the results. This incredible offering is a labor of love, with Mr. He carefully rolling the tea by hand into tighter bilochun-like curls. His hunch was that the deeper more savory flavors that come out in bilochun rolling would bring out the best in Laoshan green, and after two seasons, it’s no secret that this is Mr He’s favorite to tea share with friends and family. We wholeheartedly agree, and are pleased to share the new Spring harvest of this innovative green tea with you.
The He family tea fields in Laoshan Village, autumn 2012
This tea is made from fresh-picked leaves and buds for a sweet grassy flavor. The hand rolling gives the tea a much longer steeping life than traditional Laoshan Green, and a more savory full-bodied base note. The Spring harvest captures the creamy oat and soy milk notes of traditional Laoshan Green, while intensifying the sweet, green snap pea notes with a long, lingering aftertaste and tingling mouth-feel. It is exciting to be able to support projects in innovation like this one that not only benefit us tea drinkers and the He family, but advance the state of tea in general and keep challenging producers to bring out the best in their specific terroir.
Date of Picking:May 10 2013
Location of Picking:Ocean-facing slope of Laoshan Mountain in Laoshan Village, Shandong Province He Family Farm 15-20 acre plot fed by the mountain spring running down from the rock face of Laoshan.
What Was Picked:Young leaves and buds from the fresh spring flush.
Quantity Acquired:Mr. He sold us 30 pounds
Sourcing Agent(s):David Duckler, after spending months in Laoshan Village on a tea research grant.
If possible, use filtered or spring water, freshly boiled.
Western Brewing: Use one teaspoon of leaves per cup of water. If possible, use a glass tea pot or brewing pitcher to enjoy the performance of the leaves as they unfurl and begin to dance around. Steep for no more than one minute with 175 degree water, or until most of the leaves have sunk to the bottom of the vessel. If you don’t have a thermometer, just wait for the smallest bubbles to start coming up, and the water will be ready. Enjoy at least 3 infusions. Try to limit your vessel to one cup of water or less for the best experience.
Preferred Brewing Methods:
Gongfu Brewing: Do not heat your gaiwan. Add 4 grams of leaves for a medium gaiwan. Use 175 degree water. No need for a rinse. Steep for 3 seconds. Increase steep time after the third steeping by 3 seconds or to taste. Enjoy at least 6 infusions.
Laoshan Style: Cover the bottom of a tempered glass tumbler with leaves. Pour 175 degree water along the edge of the glass so that it does not splash over the leaves, but slowly submerges them. Drink as soon as you can handle the hot cup. Refill with boiling water throughout the day.
Jingshan Style: Boil water to 175 degrees, or until the smallest bubbles start rising to the surface. Fill a tempered glass cup or teapot 2/3 full with the water. Sprinkle 2 tsp of leaves per 8oz of water used in the vessel. Swirl lightly and watch the leaves slowly unfurl and sink. Drink right out of the cup, blowing the leaves to the side, and experience the tea first very light, and then stronger as it continues to steep.
Iced Tea (Cold Brewing)
Use about 4 grams of tea for every 12oz of water. Combine with room temperature water in a covered vessel and refrigerate for 8-12 hours. Enjoy!
Iced Tea (Flash Chilled)
Use 1TB (5 grams) of tea in a 6-8oz vessel. Steep for 30 seconds with filtered water at 175 degrees. Fill a martini shaker (or equivalent) with ice, then add brewed tea and shake until well-chilled (usually 10-30 seconds). Pour out through martini-shaker top over fresh ice in a new glass and serve.
Meet the He Family
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