Yiwushan (Yiwu Mountain)

Loose Leaf Sheng Puer 2020

Yiwu Mountain’s signature velvety yet rich character is on full display in this 2020 harvest of sheng puer from old-growth tea trees of this historic origin. These noticeably large leaves brew up surprisingly light-bodied for a sheng puer. Complex savory-sweet flavors with vegetal notes of bok choy layer with white flower and jasmine aromatics that persist even now, two years after harvest.

Clear selection

Tea Origin
Yiwushan, Mengla County, Xishuangbanna area, Yunnan Province, China

Tea Bush
Yunnan Dayezhong (Yunnan Large Leaf Heirloom Tea Tree)

Tea Maker
He Tianneng

Harvest Time
Early April

Plucking Standard
One bud, two leaves

A historic puer tea mountain origin

Three people examining a tea bush taller than they are on a dirt path in the forest.
Tea maker He Tianneng showing Zhuping and Austin the old puer tea trees in the Yiwu forest.

Yiwushan was one of the historic six famous tea mountains in Yunnan Province and a major stop on the iconic Tea Horse Road puer trade corridor. Yiwu became a place to gather puer maocha from all six mountains in the area. Even today Yiwu remains a major point of export for puer tea, since it lies merely 30 kilometers from the border of Laos to the south. This has been highly convenient for getting tea to buyers in Vietnam and Thailand.

As a result of the ongoing drought in Yunnan, Yiwu’s old forest tea trees are yielding slower and slower. Once, their leaves could be plucked every two weeks. Now, however, tea makers can only harvest from them once every few months, making true old-growth Yiwu tea ever more rare.

A long tradition of collaborative tea-making

Several round bamboo trays of drying sheng puer tea laid out in a row on raised log supports.
Drying Yiwu sheng puer naturally in the sun.

Many tea-making families in Yiwu have been in the trade for generations. Yiwu residents today are generally part of the Yi and Yao ethnic minorities as well as the descendants of Han majority immigrants.

Back in the 1700s during the Qing Dynasty, many Han people emigrated from Yunnan’s urban Shi’ping County to the remote peaks of Yiwu for the express purpose of setting up tea business with the people already living there. As these Han immigrants had business connections back in the city and greater access to education, they were able to offer a business partnership to the tea families of Yiwushan to market tea from their high-quality trees. They were also able to build tea factories there and brought knowledge of more skillful sheng puer processing techniques. With the long history of deep mutual respect and collaboration between these peoples, they have managed to grow a booming tea business and strong relationships that have lasted for generations now.

We source our tea from one of the most highly respected puer tea makers in Yiwu, He Tianneng. He is a descendant of these Han immigrants to Yiwu and a seventh-generation tea maker.

No chemical fertilizer, pesticide, or herbicide was used in the production of this tea. Click here to read more about our promise to fair trade and the environment.

Yiwushan (Yiwu Mountain) 2020 brewing guidelines

5 grams (2 Tb) tea

12 oz 100°C (212ºF) water

3 min. first infusion

At least 5 infusions: 3, 3, 5, 8, 10 minutes