2023 Laoshan Sweet Potato Leaf Tea
2023 Laoshan Sweet Potato Leaf Tea
Crafted by the He Family
- DATE OF PICKINGOctober 2023
- Laoshan VillageShandong Province
- ELEVATION500 M
- laoshan sweet potatoTea Varietal
The sweet potato is the most iconic fixture of Shandong province, and grows in every family garden in Laoshan village and up the mountainside. For decades, villagers have harvested semi-wild sweet potato from within the Laoshan National Park between rocky outcroppings and gnarled trees. As Laoshan tea becomes more famous and brings a better standard of living to the region, sweet potato has become a less critical crop, but this tea honors the tradition by applying tea finishing technique to foraged sweet potato leaf. The He Family has to roast the sweet potato leaf five times just to stop oxidation, making this a notably slow and time consuming tea to produce. Only several kilos were made this year, and we are lucky to once again offer the majority of the harvest while it lasts.
- savory - sweet potato
- spice - chicory, cinnamon, sandalwood
- fruit - jujube
- savory - marshmallow
- texture - sweet, creamy
the He Family also recommends:
- 2023 Wild Laoshan Gan Zao Ye
Gan Zao Ye (Wild Jujube) is a naturally caffeine-free herbal tea that grows unmanaged and wild on the slopes of Laoshan. The He family forages a limited quantity each spring and hand-processes it just like a traditional green tea with withering, firing and curling. The final result is packed with just as much flavor complexity (and antioxidants) as a traditional tea with a striking barley and walnut flavor.
- 2023 Wild Laoshan Mulberry Leaf
The He Family is continuing their tradition again this year of wild-foraging caffeine-free native Laoshan herbs and using their expertise at green tea processing to finish the leaves like a traditional green tea. While Shandong native Lu mulberry leaf would normally be simply air-dried for use in medicinal tea, the He Family has applied withering, heat-fixing, curling and tumble-drying to bring out much richer and more subtle flavor through their craft. We are excited to share the He Family's herbal teas once again this spring season, and to offer a look at the flavor of Laoshan from another plant entirely different from camellia sinensis!
- 2023 Laoshan Huai Flower TeaThe Huai Flower of the Scholar's Tree grows wild across the slopes of Laoshan. The aromatic little flowers have been used in Chinese medicine for hundreds of years for anti-inflammatory properties. The He Family has been wild-foraging and brewing Huai Hua for as long as they can remember, but this year again they decided to apply their meticulous green tea processing to these unique flowers, including withering, heat fixing, curling and drying. The flowers partially oxidize during these processes, bringing out deep complexity and lingering sweet aftertaste.
'As they steep, the reddish dry leaves pop open almost as quickly as green Gan Zao Ye, yielding beautiful leaves that get a touch greener with each infusion. The first steepings are very, very malty with a light chocolate flavor, pudding sweetness and hints of violet. As the tea continues steeping, it gets a thick dried apple quality with cherry bark and palm sugar undertones'
oz.use 175° watersteep 20 secondsresteep many times
add 10 sec. each infusion
Gongfu5 g.6 ozuse 175° watersteep 8 seconds
add 4 sec. per steepingenjoy many steepings
oz.use room temp. waterrefrigerate overnight
8 hoursadd ice & enjoy