Great Wall Tea Company

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Recent Tasting Notes

70

Mastress Alita’s Sipdown Challenge January 2022: New Tea

I received this tea as a Christmas gift from my sister and it was enjoyable, if somewhat lacklustre. I don’t really get mango (or pear) except in the aroma while steeping. What I do taste is canned peaches; this may be due to possible mango/apple/pear flavouring chemistry.

The fruit flavouring is definitely secondary to the bai mudan base itself, which has its own fruity notes as well as prominent notes of cucumber and hay. It’s nice and I’m glad I got the chance to try it, but I’m not sold on the combo.

Flavors: Apple, Cucumber, Floral, Grass, Hay, Mango, Peach, Smooth, Stewed Fruits

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C 3 min, 30 sec 2 tsp 16 OZ / 473 ML

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79

Mastress Alita’s Sipdown Challenge January 2022: Spicy Tea

Well, this didn’t last long. So long, carroty turmeric lattes! This could’ve also fulfilled the “new tea” and “latte” portion of the challenge, I guess – but I’m going to try and fill those with different teas (I’ve so many to choose from).

Also, now that I can smell things I can say the blend reeks of earthy ginger. I’m so grateful that this was in my possession while stuffed up.

Flavors: Carrot, Earthy, Ginger, Pineapple, Spicy, Sweet, Turmeric, Wood

Preparation
Boiling 8 min or more 2 tsp 16 OZ / 473 ML
Kittenna

Oh dang, there’s a January sipdown challenge?! Time to head to the discussion threads!

CrowKettle

It’s a little more casual than last year, with prompts that can be fulfilled at any point in the month. Still fun though! So far it’s motivating me to finish off some of the larger quantities of teas :)

CrowKettle

Love how I totally missed the “2021” typo. Always takes half a month for me to adjust to the new year number.

Kittenna

Ahahaha, there was a typo? I didn’t even notice. Also same, struggling to remember that it’s 2022 and already wrote the wrong date a few times.

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79

My sister gifted this tea to me as a Christmas present – a bold move since turmeric is divisive and my sister doesn’t know my feelings towards it (luckily, I love turmeric lattes. Maybe she does know that. EDIT: my sister bought this solely under the assumption that I love ginger. That’s solid reasoning).

This is an interesting twist on the traditional ginger turmeric combo. It contains beetroot to give a reddish hue to this golden soup, and carrot which.. have you ever had carrot juice? It’s a little bit like that – surprisingly sweet and root-earthy (quintessential “vitamin A” taste). There’s also pineapple forextra acidic dimensions. It’s a nice treat when under the weather!

I steeped it in steamed milk and added two teaspoons of clover honey. Looking forward to returning to this one when I have some soy or oat milk at hand.

Flavors: Carrot, Citrusy, Earthy, Ginger, Pineapple, Spicy, Sweet, Turmeric, Wood

Preparation
Boiling 8 min or more 2 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML

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While I enjoy sharp, bold, smoky teas I don’t drink them often enough to justify buying loose leaf; I buy it by the “to go” cup. With covid lockdowns last year, and me no longer working in the immediate vicinity, I missed my annual ritual of going down to New West’s River Market and picking up a cup to go in the fall/winter months. I didn’t mean to go today either, but when the transit gods lead you somewhere you graciously accept your blessings. I managed to pick up my sister’s preferred Double Earl Grey at the same time, so win-win!

That’s how I ended waving away the bus driver I didn’t expect so soon, while clutching a cup of slightly over-steeped smoke tea (I’m not bringing this almost-sentient campfire on board to harass fellow passengers, no. lol. My tea’s name is Calcifer). I only had to wait an extra 10 minutes for the next one. It was chill and it let me spend extra time in my favourite place, overlooking the Fraser Delta as the sun dips below the horizon (ie- 22nd Station. I don’t know why this place makes me so happy but it does).

Flavors: Astringent, Malt, Smoke, Sweet

ashmanra

That sounds divine!

CrowKettle

It was a wonderful end to already fantastic day :)

gmathis

Oh, to live in a place where you can buy good cups of tea in shops!

CrowKettle

I don’t take advantage of the privilege enough! :)

Evol Ving Ness

Neither do I much, aside from my Hong Kong style milk tea in Chinatown excursions. Occasionally, in normal times, tea at the Art Gallery (because they have Sloane Teas. I figure since I have mountains of good tea at home, why spend/drink elsewhere. Also, usually I have a travel mug of tea with me.

CrowKettle

I should probably make notes for the abundant supply of restaurant (and food court) masala chai around here. I also take that for granted.

Like you, I’ve so much of tea at home..

CrowKettle

Also, didn’t know that about the Art Gallery. They just got bumped up the list of priorities next time I visit that city.

Evol Ving Ness

Yup, the AGO, in the restaurant/cafe in the basement. Careful of the proximity to children’s programs. It is not always a peaceful time.

Tiffany :)

That sounds so nice to enjoy a nice cuppa tea in a nice place… I’m usually carrying 1-2 cold brew pitchers + 3-4 travel mugs of tea a day but that’s just my personal problem.. :)

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66
drank Lavender by Great Wall Tea Company
461 tasting notes

Got this mostly to mix with black tea and to drink in the evenings. Lavender is probably the only floral tea that doesn’t taste… floral. Or at least not like perfume. It’s more like a mild spice, something like sage. It’s also a very clear brew. Just a faint green. Maybe it’s just because it’s a bit old, but it’s not a harsh tea, though you get something medicinal in the back of your throat. Not as prominent as the lavender in the lavender-chamomile blend I got for Christmas.

Weird thing to be drinking while listening to David Bowie and also trying to read research papers on glaciers for class.

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 5 min, 0 sec

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This is another one that’s really good as a cold-brew. Smooth black tea with a refreshing blueberry flavour!

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Better than David’s Tea Pumpkin Spice tea.

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78

I got a sample of this while I was in Vancouver, just trying it now. Wow, there are a lot of different opinions online about how to brew genmaicha! I ended up going with 5g of tea for 10oz of water, 80 C, 2min. This is nice. Mellow green tea base, no bitterness, and lots of toasty flavours from the rice. There’s an underlying sweetness that I wasn’t expecting, and is quite nice.

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 2 min, 0 sec 5 g 10 OZ / 295 ML

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40
drank Rhubarb Pie by Great Wall Tea Company
13720 tasting notes

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40
drank Rhubarb Pie by Great Wall Tea Company
13720 tasting notes

eep…yeah this one was a no go for me as well omgsrsly I tried a lower temp and a shorter steep and it was just not doing anything for me :( thanks for letting me try it though ‘cause it’s something i would have been drawn towards!

OMGsrsly

Yeah, I had high hopes. :( Thought maybe you’d be able to make a go of it!

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67
drank Pumpkin Spice by Great Wall Tea Company
13720 tasting notes

omgsrsly passed this one on to me. Having not had any teas from the great wall of tea company yet, i was intrigued. While i didn’t hate this cup of tea, the tea is a little on the bitter side which kept me from really enjoying the pumpkin spice aspect of things. The flavouring wasn’t terrible but given my love for the pumpkin ginger tea that terri found us, this one falls short heh thanks though omgsrsly!

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96

The steeping time on this depends on how you make it. You either make it gong fu style with more tea, tell water, less time and more steepings or you make it western way.

I would suggest considering washing the tea first by throwing out the first steeping which is said to only have some colour and dust in it.

That would be 15-30 secounds at full boil or just under then throw away this and potentially doing a secound wash for a couple secounds. After the first brew increase the time based on what it tasted like (or decrease it).

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 30 sec

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100

Awesome

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C 1 min, 30 sec

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(264) I actually really like this tea. A good sour cherry flavour, with some sweetness and juiciness from the fig.

I will definitely get it again, but probably not from this company. I just haven’t been wow’d, and it’s easy enough to add a bag to a Tealux order (it’s Cherry Fantasy). If I find I’m craving this tea then I can go pick up a sample pack, but I’ll probably just wait.

(1.5 tsp in 10 oz water)

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 2 min, 45 sec 1 tsp 10 OZ / 295 ML

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Not bad. This one will stay in my cupboard, I think.

A 2 minute steep worked way better. It’s definitely cherry. A little tart, though. Is there hibiscus or rosehip in here? IDK. Waiting for the ingredients.

There are slices of freeze dried green figs, though. Can’t really taste them, I think they mostly just contribute to a sweet tea flavour.

I got a whole cherry in my scoop. I think I’m going to eat it. (Edit: OMG THAT WAS SOUR!)

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 2 min, 0 sec
OMGsrsly

It’s cold now (had another vet appt), but it’s really quite nice! It would be a good iced tea lemonade.

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This tea didn’t work for me either. I steeped 3 mins at 195C. Next time I’ll try 2 minutes. It smells pretty good – at least the flavouring isn’t strong alcohol like the Pumpkin Spice – but it didn’t translate into the cup. I mostly got overbearing base.

I didn’t add anything to the tea when I tried it, and my kitten is super sick right now so I’ve only been taking sips here and there of the teas I’ve been making. I’m fully prepared to admit to Operator Error.

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 3 min, 0 sec
OMGsrsly

He had some anti-nausea stuff this morning, and sub-q fluids. I found more money (now I feel guilty about all the tea :( ) and am taking him in for blood tests in an hour or so. It’s likely acute pancreatitis. :(

Lala

Hope he gets better soon.

OMGsrsly

Thank you.

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This smells so extremely boozy. I think a lot of their teas are flavoured with alcohol-based flavourings rather than flavour oils, as “alcohol” was a prominent note when I was sniffing all their teas the other day.

This tea is warm brown sugar, rum, and cinnamon. There are apple pieces in it, but I can’t taste them. I also can’t taste pumpkin. I taste alcohol.

Not a favourite. It might be improved by some airing out, so I’m going to put it on a bookshelf, open, to see if the alcohol taste/smell diminishes a bit.

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 3 min, 0 sec
OMGsrsly

Oh, boo. There’s hibiscus and rose hip in this. I wouldn’t have purchased if I had known. :/

MissB

Yea, their ingredient lists leave much to be desired. Having said that, they did email me their complete list of teas, with ingredients.. I can send it along if you’d like.

OMGsrsly

I have it too. That’s how I know about the sad ingredients. :/

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drank Roasted Pear by Great Wall Tea Company
461 tasting notes

Not sure what makes it “roasted”, but there’s a nice pear scent, and I do get a bit of pear in the cup as well.

Preparation
Boiling 8 min or more

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drank Banana by Great Wall Tea Company
461 tasting notes

Hot banana just smells bizarre. This was gifted as a sample during my latest visit (I was there when they carried in a new shipment, and this was one of the new teas included). I don’t know if I’m liking it. Dry, the smell was just “dried banana” (my dad used to dry fruits). Again, brewed, hot banana smell. It’s just odd.

The taste of the banana is very mild—barely there. It does come back in the aftertaste a bit, and there’s a natural sweetness that lingers. I probably won’t buy it, but I’ve got a good sized sample to play around with.

Edit: There was another, odd, drying taste that I thought might be the tea base, but no—or well, maybe it is—but it reminds me of banana peal. Definitely.

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 0 sec

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drank Genmaicha by Great Wall Tea Company
461 tasting notes

As someone who rarely drinks green tea when it’s not mixed with black, I was a little obsessive today that all the parameters were perfect. So as a not-really-green-tea-drinker, I’d get the best out of it.

I got this as a sample from the Great Wall (they shower me in samples). Smells like slightly overcooked rice. Sadly, their giant tin didn’t have any rice that had managed to actually pop (I like calling it popcorn tea).

First sip… Is actually very pleasant. I can definitely get the toasted rice, and the green tea managed to turn out enjoyable and mellow. I remember trying some from Murchie’s very-cold-sample-pot. Tasted cold and slimy.

This is nice, though. Toasty. I could see me carrying this around in my tea libre.

Green’s coming out a bit more as it cools, but I’m still liking it.

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C 2 min, 0 sec

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I went to remove this from my cupboard as I finished it off, only to realize it was never in my cupboard to begin with.

Huh.

It seems I am sipping a phantom tea.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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