Camellia SinensisEdit Company
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Recent Tasting Notes
Here’s a sample from my tea sister Sil, which actually came from Dexter, I think. I haven’t had very many teas from Camellia Sinensis, although I’ve perused their impressive website on more than one occasion. This is a lovely & delicious cup of roasted barley with a buttery caramel creamy mouth-feel that makes it especially appealing to me.
Sipdown (27/330)! I wanna reach 33 – 10% – by the end of the week.
This was a sample from VariaTEA. Thank you so much! I am so glad to have gotten the chance to try this tea and company. I only wish I could pick up more. ):
VariaTEA was kind enough to send me a two cup sample of this, even though it was one of her favourites! I’m glad she did, because I messed the first one up. I didn’t look at the instructions she’d written down, and assumed I should use boiling water since it was a black tea. I ended up with a bitter mess, and tried to cancel it out by adding milk. That just made the whole thing too bland, as I underleafed a bit too, and I was basically drinking warm, thin milk with a hint of roses. This cup, I paid attention and it paid off! I now have one very delicious cup of cherry and rose tea – a combination which I wouldn’t have put together, but it totally works. The dry leaf smells strongly of roses, and the cherry comes in after steeping. The scent of the liquid is sweet acerola cherries with a floral rose back note. I get rose notes primarily in the sip, rounded out wonderfully by the sweet juicy cherry which lingers. I added half a teaspoon of sugar as an experiment, and that really made the flavours pop! The cherry, especially, comes out more and is very juicy now. It’s a shame that this isn’t more readily available to me. It would definitely go on my reorder list if I could actually get my hands on some. It might have even become my go-to rose tea (I love rose tea). Sigh. Oh well. I guess I’ll have to think wistfully on what could have been.
Thanks to OMGsrsly for this sample. :) I actually did try it back when I first received it, but I was coming down with a cold and worried that everything was going to taste weird. I do remember thinking that I could taste cocoa and grain notes, as well as something else that I’m guessing is the “dirt” flavour OMGsrsly gets from this. I liked it! Mmmm, yummy dirt. ;)
So today I decided to brew it along side the Jin Pin Zhenghe Gongfu tea by Tao Tea Leaf. Western style, 2.5g in 10oz of near-boiling water for 3min. The leaves of these two teas are actually really different: the TTL one is mostly long, black, twisted leaves with just occasional golden tips; this one is small, curly leaves with lots of golden tips. :)
Today I’m getting mostly grain and malt, with a bit of sweetness and a bit of sourness or acidity. Not much cocoa or dirt today, lol. I think I might have underleafed it a bit though – usually I go for 3g in 10oz, not sure why I went with 2.5g today. By comparison, the TTL one has a richer flavour, more malt and more cocoa and less acidity. I don’t think I’ve figured out the optimal brewing parameters for this yet, but happily I still have more of this sample to experiment with! :)
This is niiiiiiice. It smells earthy and has an earthy taste, but in a nice way. I’m unwinding from a rough week of work, and this is really doing nice things to my coconut. Thumbs up!
Also, Camellia Sinensis was really generous with this order. They gave me several nice-sized samples to try, and the order got to PA from Canada extra fast. I’m always happy with their tea and service.
When sharing this with my girlfriend, our reactions to tea are always very different from each other. That being because she is a coffee drinker and doesn’t really consider herself a teaist by any means, however, she still keeps me company while sitting for gongfu of some good cha. This experience, is note worthy because our reactions are hilarious. Hers being more so.
Her: “Ugh, this tastes like an old wet leather boot.”
Me: “AH!! Oh my god! What?! Holy shit!! This tastes like GOD!”
Had a bit of this recentley from a sample. Oh, boy. Brewed this in my Gaiwan. This is what aged pu’erh is supposed to taste like. 20 years has been very kind to this tea. There is so much complexity. Heavy on the mineral, light on the bitter. I got through NEARLY 30 INFUSIONS on this. It lasted about 3 hours. The Chi has evolved into what feels like getting a Hadouken in the throat chakra, and then getting a nice warm cuddle. Hits you hard at first and then gives you the lovin. This may be one of the best teas I’ve ever had, Smoky, beachy, roasted nuts, pine. Viscous is nice, and leaves your tongue slightly numb and wanted a whole lot more.
Not too tippy, and doesn’t have that overwhelming fermented taste. This was a hell of an experience.
Flavors: Anise, Bergamot, Berries, Camphor, Mineral, Ocean Air, Pine, Roasted
Smooth and slightly sweet. This is a very earthy cup, with a little toasty quality to it. It’s like drinking dirt-y honey nut Cheerios. I drank this down too quick to make any careful notes :P I really loved spending time with this one! I still have some steeps to go too.
Rinse x2/Rest/5/10/15/15/20/25/30/35/40/45/50/1min/1:30/2:00…… still going!
Flavors: Decayed wood, Earth, Honey, Toasty
mmmm tasty tea from Dexter Since this year will be the year of Canadian companies…who let you buy in CANADIAN DOLLARS thank you very much, we’re trying to get through as many samples of teas as possible from various companies. this one is a deliciously tasty black tea. it’s a little floral like but it’s also sweet..not honey leafhopper sweet, but still sweet. This is a tea that is lighter…but not lacking in flavour. Overall another enjoyable tea from Camelia!
Edit: Whoops. Thanks so much, Dexter! I really appreciate the sample. :)
This seems like a pretty typical shou.
But holy &^%*! I can FEEL THE WARMING that Cwyn mentions in her note. OMG. Whoa.
Let’s see how far I can get with this tea.
2x pour-in-pour-out rinses.
Steep 1: IDK, time. WHOA. Yeah, it smells a little of that fishy smell that shou puerh does at times. But the taste is all DARK TEA and WHOA.
Oh man. Is 7pm too early to go to bed? It is? Guess I should have more tea. Ok.
Steep 2: 4-5 seconds. That’s really dark. Little mushroomy-fishy smelling. That warming taste/feeling is still there. Wow. My mouth almost feels like I’ve been nomming spicy foods. But I haven’t. Sadly. (Oooh, maybe I should order in Chinese. Or not. I am feeling kinda lazy. And IDK if Vancouver has one of those things where you order and pay online so someone just drops off food for you and there is a minimum amount of interaction.) A bit of sweetness is lingering.
Steep 3: I just want to nod off. I’m still enjoying this, but I’m not sure I’d want a lot of it. Fairly smooth, that weird “spice” flavour, a bit of lingering bitterness/sweetness.
I’ve been distracted and have done more steeps. I think I shall thaw a steak and do some dishes and cook the steak and NOM IT. Because that’s what I think my body needs.
First to review this, really? Well let’s try to do a good job at it then, it’s worth it!
I was quite intrigued with this tea as soon as I saw how unusual it looked like and read its description….I knew I had to buy some. Anything that has maple in its description gets my attention. (My grandpa had a sugar shack, I grew up literally “in” maple!)
Interesting fact, this tea was compressed and aged in bamboo baskets.
Its dry appearance is light and flaky. It looks like giant flakes of roasted maté, and pretty similar in terms of color.
Its smells a little like damp moss and seaweeds.
I rinsed once as recommended.
The first steep was a beautiful golden yellow.
It feels round in the mouth, almost oily, very nice.
The taste is super sweet, with a light earthiness to it. Maple water, yes please…the description did not lie.
I get a nice fresh camphor finish just like some puerh do.
It’s so tasty, some sweet spiciness emerges in the background, reminds me of anise.
Bonus: it provides a very relaxing and warming qi. I feel giddy :-)
This is a superb tea and I’m now adding Liu Bao to the list of favorite tea! It will be interesting to also try their 1996.
I take this opportunity to give some love to the wonderful teahouse that Camellia Sinensis is. When I used to live in the beautiful city of Montréal, I was a frequent customer of theirs. Superior product and impeccable service.
Americans, take advantage of our low Canadian dollar and encourage them! They even offer free shipping to the USA for all orders over $50. (Did I mention they have exquisite teaware? Cause they do!!)
Pics of this amazing tea:
First review for this one! This is a blend with dark green tea leaves and dried raspberry pieces, though I didn’t identify the orange peel pieces from the description. There is a raspberry scent that reminds me of the pastille type of fruit hard candy, and also leans toward floral and perfume-like. These qualities become stronger after steeping, which produces a yellow-green color. This is a very solid dark green tea, vegetal but not vegetable-like or grassy. The raspberry flavor is potent and refreshing. Aside from the scent being a little too perfumed, it’s quite enjoyable.
This is really, really light, sweet, and somewhat resinous. Very fresh feeling, although I wouldn’t say there’s menthol. It’s also sticky and kinda sorta (at this steep level) is making my teeth feel weird. That’s probably the tannins. It’s also rather thick.
(5 minutes at 95C, decided it was too light so I popped the basket back in for another 5 minutes.)
i told omgsrsly that i would try this one today since we both ended up ordering it from CS during their sale the other week. This tea has super cute little curly buds that made me smile as i wasn’t expecting that today.
So i don’t actually get cocoa from this one…it’s more of a slightly sweet, malty tea..with a hint of “dirt?” lol maybe there’s a little cocoa there in the background if i concentrate, but this one is vastly different from other cocoa/chocolatey teas that i’ve had. I’ll have to try this one gonfu as well to see how that changes things up.
i picked this one up in my first CS order because i wanted to try at least ONE flavoured from them that was on the bolder side, since steepster friends have let me try their lighter flavoured teas. This was actually much tastier than expected. Something about the way the puerh balances and plays with the chocolate, really just works for me. I’d be inclined to try steeping this one in milk as well some time to see how it fares. Just a deliciously darker chocolate sort of treat! YUM!
(Actually dirt plus dark chocolate plus some more dirt and maybe a few cedar shavings thrown into the smoothie just for kicks.)
Anyone interested in trying? I’m sending some off to Dexter, but there’s a good 1/3 cup remaining in my 50g.
Even gongfu this is not for me.
This is another one of those chocolatey teas that tastes like dirt to me. Dirt tea. Made better with some coconut milk creamer, but it’s still pretty much dirt tea. I expected it to be rather different from the description, so that sucks. And now I have 50g of it. Sigh.
Edit: Oh, there’s some spice as it cools. But still, dirt + spice. (I’m drinking it. I’m going to give this one a good try out. Gong fu style later as well.)
I got this because the description said it was an “accessible, easy to prepare tea.” Sounds good to me. It’s super light and fluffy; a loose tea, not a brick.
8g in 100ml
Dry: Woodsy, spicy.
Rinse: Yep, smells like a shou. I let it rest about 5 minutes just because.
Rinse 2: 5 seconds (I’m doing this with a basket in my tea cup because it’s easy.) Smells like a shou. Earthy, foresty. Honestly, so far I can’t tell that it’s different from other shou puerhs I’ve had. IDK. Oh hey, that does taste different. I can’t tell that it smells really different right now though. Might just be my nose.
5s: This is quite dark, but very clear. It’s somewhat resinous smelling. Mushrooms, forest, etc. It reminds me of the puerh I have that I really like (1990 Kunming), only both really strong yet mellow at the same time.
10s: A little more spice. It’s not clovey, but the feeling in my mouth is reminding me of cloves.
15s: Quite a bit darker, maybe a little sweeter?
15s: Not as tingly.
And I have been catted, so I can’t lean forward to get more water without tossing him off my lap. :)
It’s certainly accessible. No raunchy flavours, even though it is quite dark and strong. Super mellow. Actually, as I’ve drunk this and edited my writing… I’d almost call this boring. Have I already been exposed to too many puerh teas? Was I expecting too much?
So happy and excited to have a great aged oolong back in my cupboard. This is fantastic.
I’m not writing about it tonight – just basking in it’s greatness.
Last Camellia Sinensis sample! Thanks again to Roswell Strange for sending these my way. This one… I’m hesitant to try. It has a lot of coconut shreds in it, and I can already smell the soapiness even through the bag. Oh well, I will try it anyway! This tea is a mixture of small black tea leaves, coconut shreds, and some kind of dehydrated fruit chunks that I’m going to assume are pineapple. Dry scent is pretty much just coconut and soap.
The steeped tea also has a coconut/soap aroma. Honestly, the taste isn’t terrible, but there is a noticeable soap flavor that makes this hard for me to drink. Other than that, it’s a nice, creamy, mildly flavored coconut black tea with some pineapple in it. I’d imagine this one is quite tasty without the older coconut in it. Withholding rating.
Flavors: Coconut, Creamy, Soap
Another Camellia Sinensis flavored tea from Roswell Strange! I think I have one more left after this. Now, I’m not a rose lover, but I figured I’d give this one the benefit of the doubt and try it anyway. It appears to be discontinued, as I couldn’t find it anywhere on Camellia Sinensis’s website. The black tea leaves are small, and there are white rose petals mixed in among them. Dry scent is tartly fruity and strong on the rose.
Yeah… So this is pretty much a rose tea. :P The flavor also has that powdery quality to it that I associate with rose. I don’t taste much fruit flavor, maybe a tiny hint? Mostly, it just tastes like some kind of powdery rose candy. Noop! :P
Flavors: Candy, Powdered sugar, Rose