Camellia Sinensis

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Recent Tasting Notes

I’m drinking the winter harvest version. You know how your life seems to progress from a love of simple, bold flavors (Hi-C?) to, say, fine Burgundies (yeah, I’m old) that you never would have remotely liked as a kid? I think I’m somehow enjoying this relatively more delicate but creamy, sweet, thick Jin Shuan at least as much as I ever enjoyed the bolder, crazier versions I’ve tried. I think it’s satisfying, thick body makes up for the relatively delicate (but delicious) flavor.

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Tasting this makes me think the first oolong I ever had many years ago must have been a tieguanyin. I brings back everything I love about it with its floral, mineral, mushroom notes. Finally a candidate worthy of filling the spot opened up by the out-of-stock Verdant Handpicked Autumn Tieguanyin. If they were both available, I think I’d have to flip a coin. This version has less-pronounced (but still present) hyacinth flavors in favor of a warmer profile.

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This is my new go-to green Earl Grey. There is nothing subtle here, just a strong, brisk, clean bergamot. I’m in the camp that sees no point in delicate bergamot and really wants to be knocked out by it, so this is a winner. But it’s not only strong, but a nice rounded, balanced flavor.

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When tea drinkers live dangerously. That’s actually kind of true here. Apparently you’re really not supposed to drink this stuff if you’re pregnant or breastfeeding, and it has a ‘slightly stupefying’ relaxing effect. So it’s basically beer. In flavor it reminds me of….gin? Definitely a bit medicinal but not bad. It’s just a little piney. I’m definitely relaxed, but then, I’m spending an evening drinking tea, reading a cookbook, and playing with my dog. Really hard to pin down the culprit here. Still, I really think I need to keep this around.

Amanda 'SoggyEnderman' Wilson

Neat! I did not know that any of the Rhododendron’s species were non-toxic (but I am so not a plant expert) I will have to give it a try.

Flowery

Well, maybe ‘mildly toxic’ is the right description, at least if I’m interpreting WebMD’s summary correctly. I can live with that.

TeaBrat

sounds like I might need to try it :)

Amanda 'SoggyEnderman' Wilson

Yeah, I can live with mildly toxic ;)

Stephanie

interesting…

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This has to be the most beautiful tea I’ve ever seen. You could throw it at weddings. Don’t try to brew it with a little spoon infuser though – even in my basket infuser, I barely stuffed 3.5 grams in there. Next time I might just use a strainer after brewing completely loose. I chose this one because it promises to help with seasonal allergies that seem to be popping up tonight. The flavor is sort of a cousin of chamomile, very comforting, a little less floral perhaps. I think I like it a bit better than chamomile. I’m halfway through the cup, and my allergies have subsided quite a bit, which I of course have to attribute to just being inside for long enough to make tea. Still, maybe it didn’t hurt? UPDATE: Oh it definitely worked. 30 minutes later, after being back outside, I was completely cleared up. My claritin doesn’t work that well. That’s crazy.

Amanda 'SoggyEnderman' Wilson

A tea to help seasonal allergies, sign me up! Especially if it doesn’t have the spacey-icky side effects of allergy meds!

caile

Wow, that’s great!

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Surprise after surprise after surprise. I plucked this tea more or less at random from a giant delivery of nearly all of Camellia Sinensis’ herbals. The first surprise: it looks just like that photo! All of their herbals look just like their ridiculous photos. They look like someone may have cut the stems out of a lovely dried bouquet. Next, the tea brewed up to a deep purple I’ve never seen in a tea. Then the flavor – floral herby basil. Emphasis on the herby basil. I think this will be the perfect pre-bedtime tea.

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drank Rose & Cherry by Camellia Sinensis
6485 tasting notes

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I have no idea what to say about this tea.
There was immediately a flavor that I didn’t care for, but can’t quite place.
I kept sipping.
Then there was roasted barley, reminding me of some of the herbal teas I used to enjoy.
Then it was almost as if I was drinking a Dancong: roasted florals & grapefruit.
I’m still sipping re-steeps of this interesting tea, sent to me from Sil who got it from Dexter I think. It’s almost like a houjicha now, only tangier, like apricot. Thanks girls!
Now I’m sitting on the camellia sinensis website…just looking around…

__Morgana__

Shapeshifter tea!

Dexter

The Camellia Sinensis website is a hard place to be “just looking around”. I really like all the teas of theirs that I ordered. :))

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80

well what a strange tea. I picked it out the enormous swap box Dexter3657 sent me because I have been attracted by the leaves…of course I have thought it was an Oolong because it looks like an Oolong but no this is not…and however it comes from Taiwan and I adore Taiwanese teas…

And now I am sipping it after a 3 minutes steeping and…I am perplexe…I cannot really say what I feel about it and what I can taste. I it a medium black bodied tea, I would say a little malty with very little candied fruits.
It is a pleasant tea but really strange tea exactly like some people you meet and cannot really grasp their personnality.
Maybe I should meet this tea sevenral times…

TheTeaFairy

Lol, I have also experienced the generosity of Dexter3657!

Ysaurella

yes incredible generosity. I don’t know which lovely teas to drink first now I have so many :)

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Drinking this tea I can’t help but compare it to some of the Dancongs I’ve had. It has the slight astringency they can have, but it is not quite as thick, rich, floral or as sweet as the oolong. It does have the hint of cream and fruit the ones I have had. It is a bit thinner than most black teas I’ve had until later steeps, but it has an interesting blend of contrasting flavours and I quite enjoyed it. The product description said the tea had cherry notes. I instead got mainly citrus, pink grapefruit and apricot tones. I may have had more cherry tones in a longer steep. In later steeps cocoa and malt came out as well. The tea is quite naturally sweet with the stevia like tones I’ve found occasionally in pouchongs. Altogether a really nice tea, which leans towards a dark roast oolong. Thanks Dexter3657 for the generous sample!

I used a little over 1 TSP in 200ml of water at around90°C

1min. Maple coloured brew.
Scent- roasted note, citrus rind/grapefruit, slight floral green note.
Flavour- top note is bright with citrus pink grapefruit notes. Underneath the top notes are roasted notes and cream. As it cools a slight green floral iris note appears, it becomes sweeter and creamier, with an apricot vanilla fruit tone. the tea has a creamy texture that dtssipates into a slight astringency. The dominant flavour is the roasted note with grapefruit. The tea has an aftertaste of sweet fruit, vanilla and cream with a slight astringency.

1min 20s
Scent – similar to first steep, but slightly less intense.
The tea has this beautiful gilded seppia tone.
Flavour- the taste is sweeter and softer. There are still a grapefruit and citrus note along with a mineral tone that is more apparent than the roasted tone. It is creamy and there is a slight bright citrusy floral tone. There is a hint of peach and apricot. The roasted note is breaking down into minetal notes and a woody tone. It is mildly astringent and very sweet with an all most Stevia like tone like I’ve found in pouchong at times.

1min 60s. Bright fruity scent, grapefruit and citrus rind, green floral scent, woody note and something sweet and deeper.
Flavour- cream, mineral, wood, citrus rind with hint of grapefruit. The cream has vanilla notes and the tea sweeten as it cools. The roasted wood note is stronger as it cools. There is a hint of cocoa and honey under peach and grapefruit. Bright citrus aftertaste contrasts with a sweet cocoa note underneath.

3min. Cream, malt, hint of honey, cocoa, fruit, mineral tone. Woodiness has dissipated leaving a vegetal tone.

4 min cream, honey, malt tone, fruit as top note.

5min and 6min malt, cocoa, tastes less sweet, but still gives a hint of tartness. Cream and a hint of soft fruit appear as it cools.

6min and 7min. Malt, cream, touch of cocoa.

TheTeaFairy

Thanks for this very insightful note, I love this company.

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88

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Preparation
185 °F / 85 °C 4 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 250 OZ / 7393 ML

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88

Sipdown (117)!

Definitely didn’t expect to be sipping down this one down tonight, but that’s a thing that happened! I made the last bit of this as a tea soda, because I wanted to do something different with this tea to finish it off. Sadly it’s no longer up on Camellia Sinensis’ site which means this is probably a permanent goodbye. That makes me pretty sad; I’ve really enjoyed having this tea around!

The tea soda is kinda weird; I don’t think rose is a flavour that goes well with carbonation. Plus, the the carbonated ‘chocolate’/cacao bean flavour as well. Normally I can hardly taste the chocolate in this blend to begin with, but it’s so exaggerated here! What I was hoping for was that this would taste like one of those sweet, fizzy cherry Love Heart candies.

Uhh, these things for people not familiar with what I’m talking about:

http://i979.photobucket.com/albums/ae271/samanthabio/Spring/Love-Heart-Sweet-Tin.jpg

However, that’s definitely not what I’m getting from this. In fact, the cherry is really quite obscured! And even though it’s weird I’ve got to mention it: maybe it’s because I’ve had a lot of Earl Grey this week but something about this soda is reminding me an awful lot of the pretty awful Earl Grey Cream tea soda I made a few months back. Except, I cannot for the life of me place what it is about this that’s hearkening back to that mess of a soda.

But darn it! This sad, sad tea soda is not only ending tonight on a disappointing note but it means I wasted my last bit of this tea leaf on a brew that just was not satisfying…

:(

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88

Mmm, I can smell Safeway baking cinnamon buns right now…

So yesterday, I made this in a timolino before I left for work and then when I got home, after taking a nap, I drank this when it had cooled enough in the timolino to be a perfect temperature. I don’t know if it was from sitting in the timolino for several hours or just from being prepped in a timolino in general (or maybe I’m just crazy), but this was very cherry, and not necessarily good cherry.

If it’s happened before it was a while ago because I don’t remember it, but this actually tasted kinda medicinal and borderline cough syrup like instead of like fancy cherry candy!? Still drinkable, but no…

Probably going to avoid timolino prep with this one, to be on the safe side.

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88

Sometimes you have to make room/time in between sipdowns and new teas to have a few favourites; and that’s what I did when I had this beauty.

It actually surprised me a little bit; the guava was really strong/heavy handed, but in a delicious and juicy way. And that was followed by the usual notes of candied roses and sweet cherry. There’s something so dainty about this one, despite the fact the flavours in it are anything but gentle or subtle.

Camellia Sinensis is quickly becoming one of my favourite places for quality flavoured blends, now that I’ve tried a great range of them.

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88

Started this cold brew in the morning when I got up, and strained it out about an hour ago to drink while watching Big Brother!

It was ok; at first I found it very, very floral and concentrated in flavour – but after making it about 1/4 of the way through the mason jar I found that I’d gotten over the initial shock of the concentrated rose notes and I was able to enjoy the sweet, candy like taste of the cherry, guava, and cocoa. Mostly the cherry/guava, though.

Ultimately it was ok but I dislike that I had to “acclimate” to it, so I’ll probably be sticking with hot brews going forward.

Flavors: Cherry, Floral, Guava, Perfume, Rose

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88

Sipdown (173/175)!

This was an easy sipdown to take because I know it’s only temporary; my incredible tea triplet VariaTEA has picked up 50g for me so soon enough I’ll have a whole bunch of this to enjoy and play around with!

This cup was awesome; though the rose was the heaviest and most present I’ve had in a cup yet it still didn’t cross into artificial or perfume territory which, to me, is just another mark that this is a really, really good blend.

My headache is finally gone as well, so hopefully I’ll get a couple more cups in by the end of the evening. I didn’t feel like cooking after such a miserable day though, so I ordered in pizza for Tre and I – it was kinda my turn to do so anyway. Greasy pizza and fancy pants tea make for an excellent combo.

I swear we order from Pizza73 (a local pizza chain just blocks from our house) way too often though; enough that we have a regular and favourite delivery guy, that we no longer have to write in the comments to come to the side door (they just do it), and currently there are four empty pizza/wing boxes sitting by our garbage and that’s not including the pizza I ordered tonight.

I think we fall into the “student living” niche pretty well…

Courtney

Hehe I love the pizza story. When we were younger the pizza place around the corner knew us by name. Now it’s Shawarma Knight and Indian food. :P

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88

After this morning/early afternoon I didn’t get in a ton of tea drinking. I decided I was going to take advantage of my day off and, now that I have some money do my grocery shopping. I ended up going shopping with my friend Kristina and she helped me carry all my groceries home.

As a thank you for that, and because my grocery budget was more than enough to cover what I bought, I ordered in pizza for the two of us and we spent the last few hours watching Netflix comedy specials. The only “tea” I had in that time frame was a can of Nestea’s Iced Tea (which is super sugared) since it came with the pizza.

Now I’m having this lovely, highly delightful black blend courtesy of the lovely VariaTEA who is going to pick me up an additional 50g of it before she leaves Montreal. I wanted to have a cup of her sample sooner, rather than later, so I could let her know how much to get me.

I’m wowed by how amazing and candy like the cherry in this is; it’s totally familiar and nostalgic, and yet I feel like it’s unique and true to only this tea as well. Definitely very amazing! And then, the super subtle floral edge of this makes it that much more interesting and very dynamic and fun. Lots going on with this one; but not in a way that’s too crowded or competing!

Really happy to currently have more and be getting even more!

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88

Sipdown (192/194)!

I took this with in my timolino yesterday, for travelling around with and I’m really sad it was a sipdown, because this was a delightfully sweet black tea.

There was a moment when I first tried it where I got the most brief, fleeting note of cough syrup but that sip must have been a fluke or the result of making this in a timolino or something to that nature because the rest of it was just sweet, and candy like with just a bit of florals and was delightfully lovely.

I may have to ask VariaTEA for more of this in future swaps.

VariaTEA

This will always be apart of my cupboard. Especially given the shop is a literal block from my house (at least until I go back home). Thus, there will always be some to share :)

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88

Holy fucking butts.

Thank you VariaTEA for the sample; I was excited to make this my first tea from Camellia Sinensis because it just smelled so lovely and wonderful dry. Like sweet flowers and fruity candy!

And man, is this ever fucking tasty! I had company over when I brewed this one up – and I had to hide all my excitement because I really didn’t want to share it at all. Heh, selfish me. But really, it was super sweet delicious yummy cherry candy and candied rose and it was amazing. I’m probably going to finish my sample really quickly, and then I’ll be sad. Yup. That’s how this is gonna go down.

So, onto my shopping list I guess?

VariaTEA

Yay! I am glad you enjoyed it :). Of course I can always share some more

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45

Really vegetal…and fishy. I feel like I’m eating the seaweed wraps off of sushi.

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84
drank Si Ji Chun by Camellia Sinensis
149 tasting notes

A nice creamy vanilla taste. With a faint hint of flowers..maybe Jasmine? Or honeysuckle.

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 2 min, 45 sec

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83

As Sil said earlier, very floral! I enjoy flowers though, so this was a pleasant cup of tea for me. Think frangepelia/gardenia. Tropical fragrant flowers on a soft/sweet green base. Maybe a hint of pineapple too.

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 2 min, 30 sec

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81

Nice floral aroma with a complex tea. Spinach and walnut aroma as it brews, and I taste spring onions, with a honey passionfruit sweetness.

Not as complex as I would like, but this is a good tea, and a good example of some oolongs.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 15 sec

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