We Talk Australian Super Natives & Gurạdji Tea with Jesse from LORE Australia
One of the most fulfilling aspects of my role is meeting passionate entrepreneurs who are committed to providing sustainable pure ingredients. Jesse Gurugirr from Lore Australia is the master mind behind the feature ingredient in our No.11 Native Beauty Tea, Gurạdji tea. Jesse's commitment to spreading the word on the benefit of Australian native bio foods and promoting the indigenous holistic outlook on well being is an inspiration! We talk to him about his background and the benefits and tradition of Gurạdji tea in the post below.
How did LORE Australia come to be? Was there something that triggered you to create this beautiful business?
Like most things in life, we get passionate about our interests, our passion evolves ideas and with commitment, ideas evolve into a manifestation of our passions.
I have always been inspired by the (mainstream neglected) abundance of our native produce and driven to share our rich resources to the broader community. Yet the actual catalyst of starting LORE Australia was many years ago when an uncle taught me our traditional philosophy of health and wellness. By understanding the broader connection of Country – Community – Spirit and how disassociated people are from a wholisitic, healthy way of living gave me the conviction to make change and respectfully introduce people to a wellness philosophy that has being living harmoniously and developed in and for this beautiful land of ours.
What is your background and experience with Gurạdji? Do you have any stories that you can share about how the tea has been used traditionally?
I was taught about Gurạdji at a young age by my Grandfather and explored its traditional medicinal and ceremonial uses over many years. It is a plant that bonded with me spiritually and I take ownership of its benefits and important role both ecologically and socially.
Gurạdji has many traditional uses but mostly for its anti-inflammation, healing and relaxing properties.
The leaves were chewed to relieve toothache, women would steep the leaves in water creating a sun tea. This ceremony would last all day with the women singing customary song whilst preparing it. The sun tea was drunk to relieve stomach inflammation and to relieve monthly cycle pain.
The men used Gurạdji to welcome neighbouring countrymen onto country. Permission from a lore man was required to come to another clans country. The two men would smoke Gurạdji leaf which had a relaxing and calming effect over the body. It was like saying,
“I am comfortable sharing Gurạdji with you. You are welcome in my country.”
What makes Gurạdji different from standard green and white tea? What are some of the benefits we can expect when drinking Gurạdji?
This is a really important question to ask. There are 2 main points to mention here. Firstly, although Gurạdji has a similar taste on the palate as green tea it doesn’t leave a heavy bitterness that green tea seems to leave. Our Yama Premium Cured Gurạdji has a sweet embodied flavour due the natural sugars released through our curing process.
The second important point is that Gurạdji is naturally caffeine free. Many people don’t realise the high caffeine content in green tea. This can leave some people with stomach issues and many people these days are looking to cut out or reduce caffeine from their diet.
Yet, in a fast paced world demanding more and more from us, we need to make time to recharge our mind and soul. Gurạdji helps with anxiety, it calms the mind and this helps you focus on what’s important. It’s high anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidants help with overall health caused by our toxic environment, bad foods and bad habits.
Gurạdji’s bitter compounds which fuse beautifully with its natural sugars are great for our gut health. These help create the beneficial environment required by the probiotic gut bacteria.
Although, don’t just think tea with Gurạdji. Gurạdji is loaded with the compound inositol which has been shown to be more effective at skin repair and elasticity than collagen. We like people to be creative with our products. Put your used leaves in a bath bag and let your body soak it up. Make a face mask or drink it in a smoothie.
How is Gurạdji cultivated and harvested?
We sustainably wild harvest our Gurạdji from naturally standing groves. Our Raw Sundried is just that. Naturally sun dried on racks soon after harvest at our property.
We harvest our Yama Premium Cured Gurạdji leaves from natural groves growing under tree canopies (leaves from plants grown in shade produce more chlorophyll and amino acids like theanine, resulting in a deep green colour and rich, fuller flavour).
We then steam the leaves for a precise amount of time soon after harvest to stop the oxidisation of antioxidants. Then we put them through our unique hands-on drying process of hand rolling the leaves before lightly roasting them dry. This softens the fibres and releases its natural sugars, giving it our own distinctive rich, sweet and embodied taste and aroma. This whole process can take up to 4 hours to achieve the finest cured result.
Both varieties have their own distinct personalities suitable for individual tastes and purposes.
What is your favourite way to drink the tea?
My favourite way to drink Gurạdji is with friends and family. We have a little saying in the LORE family, Brew, Breath, Connect. Brew up a pot, Take in a breath and connect with what matters.
Gurạdji is great on its own and also makes for the perfect base for blends. Its pleasant taste helps pan out other flavours for a more rounded and wholesome experience when blending teas and herbs.
On our colder nights, I enjoy a warm cup by our fire and in summer, I fill up my tea infuser with cold water and keep refreshed all day. Lately I have been putting a tea spoon in our chai brew for our morning starter chai. As we are get into summer, I will be again using our Gurạdji powder for smoothies.