We all know, and it has been scientifically proven many times, that tea is indeed good for us, our health, body and mind. It cleanses our system as well as relieving us from stress.
If tea is such a good product for us, we have to make sure it is great toward the environment too. There are about 4 millions of tons of tea produced every year so if all the tea drinkers had an eco-responsible way of drinking, it could have a great impact, in a positive way.
In order to do so, we have to watch our consumption and make sure it is an eco-responsible one (no need to reduce your intake of this glorious beverage!). We have gathered a couple of advice for you so that you don’t feel guilty when drinking tea and it will even benefit other parts of your life. Here are our 7 advice:
So here are a couple of tips that could, at a human level, have a positive impact on the environment.
We hope you enjoy your summer!
The Great Tea Company
Dear Tea Lovers,
If you are a customer of ours, you know we are different from other tea shops, especially when it comes to our process of hand selecting teas from around the world and our love of unique flavors.
What some of you may now know, however, is how some of these unique flavors came to be. As one example, 3 holiday seasons ago, my family and I were trying to figure out a tea we could make that everyone could enjoy. We decided to add some orange peel and cinnamon into our full caffeinate black tea, and thus, a new delicious flavor was born, one that is warm and cozy and perfect for the holidays. However, I don’t have a name for this tea. I don’t want to name it “Orange Cinnamon” because we already have an Orange Cinnamon Decaf Black Tea in our shop. The difference between two is decaffeinate versus full caffeinate tea as we often hear from our customers “I want caffeine!” What do you think we should name this tea?
In addition to this unique and tasty flavor creation, we also developed another flavor. It is nutty, chocolatey, and indulgent. We took our Belgian Chocolate Black Tea and added almond, hazelnut, and sugar-coated fennel seeds. I think the seeds look like little holiday light bulbs. What do you think we should name this second tea?
We invite you to send us name ideas for these hand-crafted tea flavors. If you are picked, your tea name will become the official name for one of these teas and we will send you the tea you named! For our runner-up, we will send you a fun tea infuser.
To enter this contest, please send us your tea names along with your contact information by October 15th. Please submit your entry using the text below or something similar:
Tea 1 (Orange Cinnamon flavor) -
Tea 2 (Chocolate Hazelnut flavor) -
We will aim to announce the winner around October 20th. We would prefer that you pick up your prize at our shop because we would like to take a picture with you.
Thank you in advance to all who participate. We wish you luck and can’t wait to see what the new names for these scrumptious teas will be!
All my best,
Always online at
firstname.lastname@example.org or by mail PO Box 594, Shakopee, MN 55379
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Dear Tea Aficionados:
I hope you are having a good summer. I always get a bit sad when I drive past corn fields in the summer, as corn fields are summer’s timekeepers and inevitably signal the season’s gradual exit. I live right by a corn field in Shakopee, and recently when I drove by it with my children, I told them, “Now the corn is taller than me. You all know what that means. Our summer is coming to the end soon. And then you will have to go back to school.” This also means that our hot summer days are coming to an end too (remember the 104-degree day we had earlier in the season?!), and before we know it, it will be time to welcome in the cooler days of fall.
Just as the temperature changes with the season, so too do the teas I carry. The summery flavors are going fast, including fruity flavors and several varieties of refreshing green and white teas, among others. Some of my personal favorites include the Fruity Sangria and Organic Chamomile Dream. If you hurry, you can enjoy 15% off select flavors before they’re gone. Don’t wait though because once fall rolls around, we will have limited stock of our summer flavors.
To redeem your discount on select teas online, use code “Summer15%OFF” when you check out. Otherwise, we’d love to see you in our new brick-and-mortar location in charming downtown Prior Lake or at one of our farmers market locations.
Here’s where we will be in August:
Our shop at 16228 Main Ave SE #113, Prior Lake, MN 55372 TH 2-6pm, F 2-5pm, SAT 9-3pm
Hopkins Farmers Market- August 11 & 18,7:30-12pm
Prior Lake Farmers Market - August 11, 2018 8-12pm
Golden Valley Farmers Market - August 12 & 19, 9-1pm
Here at the Great Tea Road Company, we are wishing you a great rest of your summer and that you find the perfect tea to complement your summer memory-making. As always, we are happy to provide recommendations on flavors and brewing instructions. Until we meet again…
All my best,
Always online at
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Macao, a region on the south coast of China, has been given the nickname of “the Vegas of China” due to the influence of other cultures, and the increase in casinos and gambling. Who would think that this same region Macao would also become such an important place for the creation of tea.
Dating from the early 17th century, Macao was the most important entry that exported chinese tea to the west. The tea trade was a crucial industry, as it played an important role in the history of China; bringing the tea propagation and trade. Eventually, the Chinese tea culture was disseminated to Europe, the Americas and worldwide, and merged with local customs and habits to form a new type of global tea culture.
Macao was then a gate-way of sorts for tea exportation around the world. It had an abundance of valuable cultural heritage related to tea, in the form of art such as poems and couplets centred on tea, drawings with tea as the theme, and other cultural staples like tea restaurants, tea shops, tea societies, tea houses, tea booths, and tea customs.
Today, it is sad but it seems we could find more tea houses in Hong Kong rather than Macao. We visited a tea museum (picture above) and was looking for an original tea house that was mentioned in the museum. Unfortunately, the staff said it was closed years ago due to the influence of casino.
For Hong Kong, tea is still a popular drink and Hong Kong people enjoy it throughout the day - for breakfast, in the afternoon, and at dinner. Most teas in Hong Kong come from China but decades of colonial rule under the British lent to the custom of enjoying "milk tea." Tea and dim sum are a pair of lover. In Cantonese (spoken in Hong Kong and parts of Southern China), "yum cha" refers to the Chinese tradition of drinking tea. Yum cha has come to mean sipping tea while eating dim sum, similar to Tapas. Yum cha and dim sum words are used interchangeably.
About 5-6 years ago, my father told me that he was interested in growing Sacha Inchi tea. Finally, he pulled things together and received a license to harvest this particular tea in Northern Thailand. The fruit looks like heart or star shape, depending on how you look at it.
How exactly might these delicious seeds help your health?
Consuming sacha inchi over a four month period resulted in a drop in the patients’ LDL and overall cholesterol levels as well as an increase in HDL – the good type of cholesterol.
This effect owes a great deal to the presence of essential omega-3 fatty acids which are known to have cardio-protective benefits.
High in Serotonin which is a neurotransmitter which is believed to help calm the nerves, boost the mood and deal with anxiety, depression and stress.
BRAIN HEALTHBecause so much of the brain is made up of fat, it needs healthy fats of the type contained in sacha inchi to resupply the cells and help to fight against inflammation.
Antioxidants also have an anti-aging effect, not only on your internal parts but also on the skin. They can help prevent wrinkles and keep your skin looking younger for much longer.
JOINT HEALTH AND ARTHRITIS
Sacha inchi may be an effective food when it comes to dealing with the pain of arthritis and rheumatism.
Disclaimer: The information is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. All content, including text, graphics, images and information, contained on or available through this web site is for general information purposes only.
What it tastes like?
Sacha Inchi tea has a mild flavor with a nutty finish. Since we can customize how we want this tea to be made, our mix has 50% leaves and 50% nut shells. Nut shell is where most of the nutrients come from. The leaf helps with the color of the tea. My father holds a Thai Certified Organic but to convert to US Certified Organic is too expensive for us to do so. We decided to leave it as it is.
You can also pick this tea up at
715 Florida Ave So., #206
Golden Valley, MN 55426
Enjoy the pictures from the farm.
You see, when I was young, I would frequently have chrysanthemum tea with my meals. It became a sort of staple for my meals, and was a fun thing to look forward too during the day. I loved the tea, it was so amazingly delicious. What I find funny, though, is that I didn't actually know that it was flowers.
Chrysanthemum tea is non-caffeinated, and is sweetened to enhance it’s nice, soft flavour. What makes this tea so special is that the sweet, non-caffeinated taste works whether it is served hot or cold. So it can work for many meals, and is good to drink whether it is hot or cold outside.
Want another amazing fact? According to Traditional Chinese Medicine, chrysanthemum tea has many different health benefits. One of those medicinal benefits includes “cooling” your body. So this is a great drink to have when you have been eating too many “hot” foods, such as deep fried or barbecued foods.
Chrysanthemum tea, a premium tea, comes directly from a Northern Thai tea garden. At the farm, they only produce it about once a year. As I know the owner of the tea garden, and am quite close to them, I can say safely that they are incredibly nice. All of the flowers that he selects for us are the best of the best.
Enjoy the pictures of both the flower and the farm.
Tai Ping Hou Kui, means Monkey King Green Tea. This tea is one of the most luxurious tea from China. It is very healthy for your skin and body. It is the antioxidant that helps protect your skin from the harmful effects of free radicals, which cause wrinkling and skin aging. Drinking green tea is an effective and organic way to cure acne. Regular consumption of at least 3 cups of green tea per day will treat acne by improving insulin resistance, and reducing the levels of hormones.
picture credit: teaherbshop.com
How to brew it? We also say drinking tea is as much science as art. Don't be afraid to try new way to suit your taste and style. For this tea, we suggest the water should be at 160-170F Apply 3-4 g Monkey King tea leaves to an uncovered ceramic teapot or tall heat-proof glass like picture above, add 6 fl. oz. of hot water and brew for one to three minutes. Monkey King Green Tea can generally be brewed for up to 3 times. Gradually increase steeping time and temperature for subsequent brewing.
Monkey King (in Chinese Tai Ping Hou Kui) is a native to the regions near Yellow Mountain in Anhui Province, an area which produces other famous variety of green teas, like Huang Shan Mao Feng and Legendary Liu An Melon Seed. We work with a farmer directly to obtain the best quality teas (above picture is where our tea came from).
Tea Plantation visiting & Store hour.
Many people had asked me how we decided to come up with new teas. To be honest, my husband and I listen to you. We hear about your concern about health, wellness, what you like and don't like. We are not a company that check off the list from vendors to obtain our teas; we carefully listen to what customers want. This is why we are visiting tea plantations. As a result, my husband will stay at the tea shop while I travel to the Northern Thailand.
One of our goals this year is to grow our selection on Herbal Tea. Of course, I will also visit Tea plantations (Tea as of Camellia Sinensis, a scientific name of tea tree) and other herbal tea plantations such as Chrysanthemum and Sacha Inchi. The reason to visit is to ensure that we get high quality products and they are organically grown.
I hope to bring back teas and herbal teas to share with our communities. My husband will need to take care of our 2 young children and look after the shop. For the week of 3/12 and 3/19, we will be opened only on Saturday from 9-3pm on 3/17 and 3/24. Sorry for the inconvenience.
新年快樂 (Xīnnián kuàilè) Happy Chinese New Year!
According to the Chinese zodiac, the year of the dog starts on February 16, 2018. Along with the new year, we have some new information we would like to share: after years of being located in various outside farmers markets, we have finally secured our retail store!
While we enjoyed the experience, we are incredibly excited to be holding our GRAND OPENING on February 10th, from 10 AM - 2PM. Hopefully you will all be able to come join us, enjoy some tea, and get to explore our beautiful new store.
On behalf of the year of the dog, and to celebrate our GRAND OPENING, where you will be able to try our special sample tea for free. We will also be giving everyone who attends our grand opening event a 20% discount on their purchases made that day. Hopefully you will enjoy our sample tea as much as you enjoy dogs. Unless you are not fond of dogs, which, in that case, we hope that you enjoy the tea more than you like dogs.
It will be a very fun event, so we hope to see you there.
Starting from 2/1/18: We will begin our soft opening. We hope you can stop by to say hi, see our space and look at our tea products.
Happy New Year! We hope you are enjoying your time with friends and family. We start off this year with a legend about Da Hong Pao Oolong. It is one of our favorites! It said in 1385, during the Ming Dynasty, a scholar name Ju Zi Ding was on the way to attend the Imperial exam. This exam was at that time the major path to a career as an official. Unfortunately, on the way to the exams he became ill when he arrived in Wuyishan and wasn't able to continue his journey.
Luckily, a monk from temple name 'Tian Xin Yong Le' passed by and served him a special tea with healing effects. Ju Zi Ding was healed and made it to the exams on time. He eventually passed the exam with the highest score and was awarded an imperial scarlet red robe. Scholars with the highest scores are called 'Zhuan Yuan' and have a promising career advising the emperor and taking high officials' positions.
The humble scholar was so grateful that he travelled back to visit the Monk to thank him and ask where he got the tea from that healed him. Once arrived at the tea bushes, Ju Zi Ding took of his red robe and wrapped it 3 circles around the tea bush out of gratitude and carried some Da Hong Pao tea in a jar back to the palace. Since then, the tea is named Da Hong Pao, meaning Big Red Robe in English.
Like a vintage pu-erh – the tea varietal mainly produced in Yunnan province – Da Hong Pao doesn’t expire with age, but only improves (pu-erh is a full fermented tea, if you don't know already). It can be sold and resold numerous times over the decades, gaining in value with each transaction.
Da Hong Pao still grows in traditional, small-scale tea gardens, and each spring the farmers still climb the hills to implore the tea god to bring new shoots. It’s the combination of rock and water that gives Da Hong Pao its rich flavor. The rain that pours off the sheer rock walls, flowing down narrow streams and pretty waterfalls, becomes imbued with minerals, which then impart their goodness to the tea. A legends has sprung up around the original Da Hong Pao trees, which still perch precariously on a cliff face not far from the monastery.
What Da Hong Pao taste like? This is a medium charcoal roasting oolong. It gives a flavor of red dates and purple plums and slightly roasted with light floral / fruity aroma. It is clean finished and clear, medium-amber colored liquor.
Stock up your favorite teas. They are 20% OFF.
Use this code or pass on to your friends and family.
It is $5 shipping in Twin Cities.
Free shipping with $65 order.
Disclaimer: Not qualified for Journey Point Card
Thanksgiving day centers on cooking and sharing a bountiful meal with family and friends. It is another year, we blended orange black tea. Deliciously sweet and fruity with the underlying support of a robust (decaf) black tea.
The weather is getting colder. Please take care of yourself and have this wonderful Orange black tea to warm you up!
We met Karen at the church in November. We remembered that she purchased "Strawberry White" and "Blueberry White" sample tea. Since that day, she called us when she needs new teas.
We are very happy when someone is happy. This is a reason why we keep going with our tea journey -- to put smile on your face.
Thank you for being a part of our tea journey.
One of our friends suggested to change the current recipe of sweet mint tea. We took his suggestion to heart! Now it is called "Organic Exquisite Mint" Tea. We LOVE mint (peppermint, spearmint, wolly mint, etc). Do you know why mint is such a good plant? Here are 10 Reasons why drinking mint tea would be good for you:
Tea & Ice Cream
I got a chance to meet Grandpa's ice cream in Fridley. To my surprise, Kathy, the store owner and ice cream maker, wanted to make ice cream out of our teas. As I kept thinking which tea would be suitable for ice cream, I suggested Organic Chamomile Dream and Organic Ceylon Earl Gray.
Kathy turned our tea into yummy sorbet and ice cream. If you have a chance to visit Fridley, stop by Grandpa's ice cream. They are very innovative and have many different kind of fun flavors.
I admitted; I love Bubble Tea. It is one of the best creations coming from Taiwan. You may have tried in many Asian stores around where you are. I can only tell you one thing. They are too sweet and most of the time, they don't even use "real" tea.
Welcome to Chun Shui Tang (春水堂). The founder, Liu Han-Chieh, first came up with the idea of serving Chinese tea cold in the early 1980s after visiting Japan where he saw coffee served cold. Then, in 1988, his product development manager, Ms. Lin Hsiu Hui, was sitting in a staff meeting and had brought with her a typical Taiwanese dessert called fen yuan, a sweetened tapioca pudding. Just for fun she poured the tapioca balls into her Assam iced tea and drank it. Today, bubble tea shops occupy nearly every corner of Taiwan’s streets. They spread to neighboring countries like Japan, South Korea and China and then to the rest of the world. Unfortunately, Lin did not trademarked the product. Much like Sriracha sauce from my hometown, Sriracha, in the Eastern part of Thailand invented Sriracha sauce without trademarked them.
Their bubble teas are made to order and are usually shaken, not blended as in other shops. Unlike many stores in the US, they use real tea instead of powdered tea which I suspected there was no tea added at all (and full of sugar or corn syrup).
I ordered Mango & Ginger bubble tea which was a new item on the menu. Perhaps, I was sort of sick due to lack of rest during this trip and caught cold. My apology. So my taste bud didn't work well.
Anyhow, if you have never tried it before, I suggested you try it once. It is interesting texture and fun to drink (and of course, unnecessary high calories). See you next month!
Partly credited to:http://travel.cnn.com/explorations/drink/inventor-bubble-tea-885732/
A very nice comment from one of our friends: "This morning I enjoyed my first bowl of the ceremonial matcha that I ordered from you. It was bright green (always a good sign) and delicious. Thanks for sending it out so quick!". Cynthia H., Minneapolis.
Thank you. We are happy to hear your opinion and suggestion. This is why we keep going with our tea journey to put that happiness on your face. Thank you so much for being a part of our tea journey.
Tea Presentation at Minneapolis Institute of Arts (MIA).
What a fun day! It was at the Minneapolis Institutes of Arts that i had a chance to present tea to Patron group. We plan to offer tea ceremony in the future for people who are interested tea culture when we open up our brink and mortar store.
We have been really busy with new packaging. This is to help us assure the quality of tea and lower the cost to pass to you in long term. We decided to go ahead with new packaging. Don't be surprised when you see us next time!
As we search for the best tea, we took a walk up the trail to see the sun rise. This area is Sun Moon Lake, Nantou, Taiwan.
It is one of the Eight Wonders of Taiwan. Coming from a land of 10,000 lakes, I thought to myself "Do I need to see another lake?".
Surprisingly, What I didn't realize is it was different than our lakes where tall mountains were back drop. Sun Moon Lake got its name from the unique terrains that look like the sun on the diamond-shaped eastern side and crescent moon on the curved western end.
The lake’s scenic beauty has given rise to such names as “Pearl in the Mountains,” “Honeymoon Lake,” and “Lovers’ Lake.” It is also called the “Heart of Taiwan” for its role as a major hydropower generator.
Sun Moon Lake Black Tea #18 is a mixture between two cultivar of local Taiwan tea plant (B-607) and Burmese tea plant (B-729) back in 1999 and was kept improving its cultivar since then. The leaves were picked by hand. Its smell is like light lotus and cinnamon which is uniquely produced in Taiwan. Some people may not like drinking black tea but this tea is easy to drink with red-brown liquor when brew. We would recommend this tea because it is premium and uniquely produced tea.
We sourced them directly from the tea farm in the Sun Moon Lake area. Please enjoy the photos from the farm.
One of the black teas that I enjoy is Darjeeling. This Darjeeling tea estate is located at Mirik Town about 40 kilometers away from Darjeeling. This estate is very famous for producing good quality clonal tea. “Clonal tea” means the tea was made from hybridization. Clonal tea bushes are not grown from seeds but from hybrid clones. They are bred for specific qualities, thus some of the clonal teas became the most sought after teas in the market due to their superb taste and quality. With medium fermentation, the flavor of Darjeeling is very greenish, herbal-like, with a hint of floral fragrance. Some people tasted and commented that this tea has a delightful aroma like fresh bouquet of margaret, rose and marigold.
Use is code to get 10% discount of this delicious Darjeeling: Darj10off
Where will we be in 2017 season?
Tea Farm Visit
Taiwan is well-known on their oolong teas and we will be on our "journey" to find the BEST teas. We will setup many meetings with several tea farms. We will bring back the best teas in this region for you to enjoy and share our story when we return.
Your Journey Begins With Our Teas
Where will we be this summer?
We are confirmed:
Saturday: Hopkins Farmers Market
Sunday: Market in the Valley (Golden Valley).
The decision to move Sunday Market from Linden Hill Farmers Market to Market in the Valley wasn't easy. We are still waiting for some confirmations for weekday's markets as well.
We are also looking for a retail space. If you know something, please let us know. We hope to see you soon for this coming season.
This tea is one of our BEST sellers. As we mentioned in our last post of switching vendors around but remain the same quality, we could come up with a price reduction to pass on to you. We hand-blended them ourselves so you can have the best ingredients and share our passion for tea.
We suggest to steep this tea in milk (or regular soymilk). But whatever you do, it is truly delicious.
With a month of love, you can get 10% off this item using code: Chocolate10OFf. expire 2/24/17.
How to store tea
When I walk into a co-ops or some tea houses, I see a row of beautiful display in clear glass containers which labeled with tea’s name. This is so common mistake. While displaying the tea shows its beauty but it can be detrimental to the quality of tea. They are extremely vulnerable to moisture, light, air, odor, and heat. Proper storage can make a perfect cup of tea.
To keep tea fresh, store in an airtight non plastic container in a dry, dark, cool environment (room temperature is okay). Do not store in a refrigerator or freezer, except Matcha. Once opened, its freshness, taste and color begin to degrade, so we recommend to store opened matcha in a refrigerator. This is why we invested in our containers. We want you to have high quality tea and environment friendly.
Arboretum Winter Farmers' Market
We have been attending this event for several years now. This year, it will be on Saturday, February 25th from 10AM - 2PM. Located at the Minnesota Landscape Arboretum.
We hope to see you there!
Disclaimer: We are not associated with any local or oversea tea organization.
Staff at Great Tea Road Co