Enchanting Lahijan tea
Lahijan Teapot statue, Gilan province, Iran
Our Shahin Chai tea is a superb saffron floral version with an Indo-Persian inspired blend composed with Lahijan, Ceylon, Kenya, Malawi, and Assam black teas.
Lahijan black tea is a very niche tea from Iran. Located near the Caspian sea in Gilan province, a major touristic place. Lahijan is also famous for its "koloochey", cookies with a soft filling of cinnamon, cardamom and walnut filled that we discovered couple of year ago and absolutely love, and for its tea. Historically, Lahijan is known as the first town in Iran to have tea plantations since the end of the 15th century, being on the path of the Silk Road. Soon tea houses, or "chaikhanehs", started to sell tea, a product tightly controlled by the British, and became very important after the 15th century, when coffee was abandoned in favour of tea, easier to source through China’s Silk Road.
Tea cultivation really took off in 1899 with Prince Mohammad Mirza known under the name "Kashef Al Saltaneh". Prince Kashef. Diplomat, writer and reformist from the Qajar and Pahlavi dynasties, he spoke fluently French as he was a student in Paris, and went to India pretending to be a French labourer as the British would not allow him to learn the secrets of tea production.
On his way back, because of his diplomatic immunity preventing stopped the British from searching his luggage, he brought 3000 tea saplings and chose the region of Gilan, which climate was perfect for tea cultivation. And after six years of experimentation, Kashef launched his first tea to the market, and started an industry that revolutionized the economy of two northern Persian states, Gilan and Mazandaran.
Following his will, he was buried in a simple black marble grave on a tea hill but later, a mausoleum known as the "Kashef's mausoleum" in the shape of a long and rectangular tower with pillars was erected with 2% of the tea trade revenue for his contribution as the founding father of tea in Iran. The mausoleum is part of the Iran National Tea Museum in Lahijan.
Kashef's mausoleum, Lahijan, Iran
Thanks to his contribution and the excellent tea that grows in Lahijan, Prince Kashef made Iranians one of the world's most avid tea drinkers. Now give a try to our contribution to Persian love for chai. We promise it'll not only be your luxurious drink of choice but it will transport you to a fabulous time and space travel to one of the most ancient and culturally rich countries.