The original Labrador tea is made of mature leaves from the plant harvested in late summer. Drying is faster than when you use green tea, but the duration is strictly guarded. To prepare the original tea, do not boil water. Simmer water and brew tea previously crumpled up to 70 degrees for 3 minutes. A longer term infusion enhances the presence of tannin in the taste, which loses its finest. Beyond 5 minutes of infusion (decoction), the dominance of tannic and essential oils extracted substances is such that the taste is thereby enhanced. Tea’s flavour is now strong and bitter.
Labrador tea ﬂower is harvested by hand, during one morning of June and gently dried away from the sun. Two very important parameters are involved in this phase: the temperature and duration. These will vary depending on the water content of the ﬂowers. A low level desiccation could result in mouldiness, while too high drying could remove any aroma. Tea ﬂower is deemed for being made with such ﬁneness, for having a delicate fragrance and making its gathering so difﬁcult. This is why the tea ﬂower is so rare. Simmer water, scrunch and infuse 4 or 5 ﬂowers for 3 minutes.
Green Labrador tea is made of fresh tender leaves of the year. Harvesting is done around the month of July. To prepare green tea, avoid boiling water. Simmer water and brew tea at about 70 degrees. Compared to coffee, tea vivifying action happens more slowly in a longer period and ﬂexes during the same time. Simmer water, scrunch and infuse 4 or 5 leaves for 3 minutes.
We use mature leaves in a smoking process with balsam ﬁr branches, resulting in a fragrant, subtle and masculine tea. Cold smoking’s duration is very short and carefully monitored to get a great quality product. Simmer water, scrunch and infuse 4 or 5 leaves for 3 minutes.
Roasting is made of mature leaves which are heated to a temperature up to 100 degrees until its color turns darker. Thereafter, the leaves are placed in a dryer. This process is, of course, made away from the sun. The flavor is a little more bodied and tannins are a lot more present during the taste. Simmer water, scrunch and infuse 4 or 5 leaves for 3 minutes.
The antioxidant duo (Labrador tea and aronia berries or chokeberries). The aronia melanocarpa is a small black fruit from Gaspésie. Due to their high content of anthocyanins, the aronia berries are the most antioxidant rich fruits (twice as cranberries and blueberries). Combined with Labrador tea, they perfectly complement the antioxidant most delectable infused duo. Simmer water, scrunch 4 or 5 leaves, add 1 tablespoon of aronia berries pulps, and let steep for 3 minutes.