Camellia Sinensis

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Recent Tasting Notes

85

This tea is visually beautiful. Small and shiny balls of greenness with yellowish stems. This tea is well made already.The dry leaves smell green and grassy, fresh and strong. Each time I brew this tea in a gaiwan, I made up to 9 steeps (water at 200 for 5’ infusions, open gaiwan). each of them so different in taste and feelings. It is a very interesting green tea that evolves with time and the temperature of the tea in your cup. It has a very pleasant smoky feeling that is not overwhelming. It is first very herbal and grassy with some sweetness in it.it always has a mineral subdued taste during all infusions (pebble).During the last infusions the tea change to more floral notes (spring). The most striking with this tea is the continuous freshness of each cups. fresh and light yet with a presence and a nice energy in your mouth. a must try.

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 0 min, 15 sec 4 g 3 OZ / 80 ML

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76

Had an enjoyable afternoon with this one. Not much to say beyond the fact that it’s been a decent tea…just not one i MUST HAVE in my cupboard, so that’s good (for me at least hahaha). This of course means that i managed to hit my Feb goal of 110 teas AND i’ve hit my weight goal as well (well more than) so yay for travelling tea boxes and drinking more than i have been because of working from home :)

VariaTEA

Congrats on reaching your goals!!!

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76

this one came from omgsrsly Figured that i’d give it a shot today since i need to work on my puerhs and this one will need a couple rounds before i can consider it a sipdown heh.
On the whole this is a relatively decent puerh and one that was quite nice to visit over the course of the day. Earthy, smooth, no fermentation, light on the tail end of the sip. Not sweet, but more on that side than on a bitter side.

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74

I love the scent of this tea – it’s like a cross between rose petals and raspberry candies. The sample is showing its age so the flavour is a bit dull but I can still clearly taste the sweet rose flavour. It’s good taken either plain or with milk.

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML

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86

Today marks one year since I joined Steepster, and I couldn’t be more happier about that choice. This has been such a great experience, and I am always happy to be surrounded by crazy tea freaks like me. I am super excited for next year, for I have learned so much in 2015. I am soooo pumped for spring harvest! Anyways, I toast my cup to another fruitful year steeped in fancy smancy tea!

This has been eyeing me lately, and I was deciding if I should give it away or keep it. I opened the punch and gave it one sniff, and I got my answer. This tea smells so good! The aroma was intense fresh fruits with a crisp sweetness. It actually reminded me of fruity pebbles when you first open the bag. I warmed my gaiwan up and dumped these sugary treats inside. The aroma immediately transformed. Now, I was picking up heavier tones of sweet malt, dry chocolate, raspberry, and wet mahogany. I washed the leaves once and prepared for brewing. The leaves turn a beautiful pale yellow jade which caught my attention. The drink itself is fairly good, but it wasn’t as grand as the dry leaf aroma. The taste begins light and sweet with a prominent woody flavor. The brew then moves into some dandelion and honey with a tangy dryness. This was a very light and smooth drink, and I really liked it. The taste finishes with some astringency and a woody tone. The qi is slight and just a basic energy burst the lingers in the eyes and moves around clearing up the head. I liked this, but I think it might be better brewed western.

Flavors: Dandelion, Drying, Fruity, Hay, Honey, Wood

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 45 sec 5 g 3 OZ / 100 ML
Sil

happy steepsterversary!

Haveteawilltravel

Thanks Sil :D

boychik

Congrats !

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So, I’m officially “healed up” enough that I can drink hot things again and eat semi-solid foods. I’ve been craving this tea all week ever since bagging a sample up for a friend so I figured this would be the first thing I steeped up to celebrate getting the wisdom teeth out!

I have some teas I need to review for Mosaic Tea but I’m holding off on reviewing those until I can get the taste of blood out of my mouth. And on that note, bear in mind that with this review I definitely have the taste of blood in my mouth and it doesn’t seem to be going anywhere for at least a little while. I’m not numerically rating this tea for this tasting because of that: I’m not sure just how much that flavour will affect the session.

I made this Western style in a larger pot, mostly because I know I’m not gonna be tasting this tea for a perfect palate so I’m not gonna waste my time with a full Gong Fu session. The other part of why I did this Western style was because I was brewing not just for myself but for my new roommate Trey and our coworker James as well. Western brewing is just easier when it comes to serving tea for non tea drinking people.

- Strong licorice aroma from the dry leaf! Quite sweet
- Brewed, I still think this has anise notes to it; provides a solid foundation
- Also a touch fruity: orange rind/citrus rind
- With some creamyness/rich mouthfeel
- A an artichoke/vegetal component
- A little bit of a semi medicinal finish w. some astringency
- Possible the slightly funky finish is from the blood in my mouth via. wisdom tooth holes
- Interesting overall; I’m sure it’ll really perform well Gong Fu

Flavors: Anise, Artichoke, Citrus Zest, Cream, Licorice, Orange Zest, Vegetal

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87

I got a sample (sachet) of this from the Tea Festival a couple weeks ago. I wasn’t expecting too much from it (I haven’t tried anything from this company before), and I was blown away. This tea is great. It is bold, zesty and even a little bit vegetal. It also has a slightly roasted flavour, which I really loved.

I think a road-trip is in my future to visit the Camellia Sinensis shop and see what else they have to offer.

Preparation
165 °F / 73 °C 3 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 14 OZ / 414 ML

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Thank you Sil for sending a sample of this my way. :)

I’ve western steeped the whole sample three times and it held up really well to that.
This isn’t my favorite style of black tea, but it certainly is a decent cup. It’s really smooth and gentle. A little starchy, quite sweet, a bit fruity. I’m not getting any malt or chocolate.
Happy to be drinking it today, but this wouldn’t have a permanent place in my cupboard.

Sil

best part about sharing things. great to try, now i don’t have to buy hahaha

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A sweet smell, sweet flavor. Though somewhat familiar I can’t quite place where I remember this sweet smell. Oh wait. Jasmine! That’s what that is. Maybe it was tainted or is that how it’s supposed to be? Either way I like it. Slightly floral with a bit of grass and hay. Very slight earthy notes too.

Preparation
1 min, 0 sec

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87

This is a queued tasting note.

Steeped up two of the bricks Western style in a fairly large pot for myself and a friend; we both quite enjoyed the tea. Enough so that we steeped it a second time, as well. Personally I think this is really delightful and smooth with a rich sweetness, of molasses, cocoa and maybe brown sugar, a deep earth/petrichor type note, a mineral like taste, and a sort of clean woody note. It’s the sort of tea that seems really appropriate to be drinking by the gallon on a dark, stormy night when the rain is just pouring down and their’s thunder and lightening abound.

In fact, it’s supposed to rain this week so I’m crossing my fingers SO HARD for a hell of a storm so I can take full advantage of my porch and have a session of this in the pouring rain. I want it so badly. That said, Gong Fu was definitely better than Western steeping so when that heavy rain session hits that’s how I’ll be brewing this one up.

Sil

mmm sounds tasty

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87

And so begins the Pu’erh journey…

Over Christmas, one of the presents I got was $75 towards whatever I wanted on Camellia Sinensis (‘cause my family knows it’s one of my favourite tea companies, and they’re Canadian so no shitty exchange rates) and I fully took advantage of that to buy several different kinds of Pu’erh to further explore this complex and interesting tea type. And, on Tuesday that tea arrived! Actually, a lot of tea arrived – I received my orders from Red Leaf Tea, Teaware House, and Camellia Sinensis all in the same day! Well, I immediately had to try something so I brewed up one of the mini bricks in my new gaiwan from Teaware House!

Now, I don’t think I’ve ever had Jingmai before – and someone here on Steepster (who definitely knows more about Pu’erh than I do) told me it’s odd to see a Jingmai shou so I had weird/low expectations brewing this one up. I really, really enjoyed it though! I only did six infusions because it was after two in the morning and I was already starting to feel tea buzzed on top of just plain exhausted so I decided it was in my best interest to cut the session early and just go to bed before I was too wired/slap happy to sleep properly.

This was really smooth with a rich, thick mouthfeel and a sort of softness to it. Every sip was really round, and pleasant – I don’t know why I expected more ‘bite’ or astringency to this, but I didn’t find it nor did I really miss it. I could really ‘feel’ the tea on the roof of my mouth and middle/surface of my tongue.

The flavour was also delightful; it was much sweeter than I think I’ve experienced with a lot of pu’erh! Right from the start of the infusions this had really consistent notes of honey, molasses, earth, and a dark fruitiness. That fruitiness later became more intense and picked up a more distinct fig/date flavour as well as a dark cherry-like note in the last few infusions. I also found this had an almost ‘oat’ like flavour as well. Quaker sells a ‘Honey Oatmeal’ (or something close to that) flavour and that in particular is a little like what I thought this was tasting like. The last few infusions were definitely more woody, as well.

This was so tasty! And to be perfectly honest, I’m just so incredibly psyched for my next session with this one because it was so lovely! It just makes me all the more excited to try the rest of the different Pu’erh I picked up from Camellia Sinensis…

Sil

YAY! So glad your journey started out with a bang!

Stephanie

Sounds delicious!

kristinalee

I’ve never bought from them because I always thought the prices looked insanely expensive, and then just now I realized they weren’t automatically converting things to USD based on my IP address. What-cha does do that, but I’d have automatically noticed from the pound sign if they didn’t. With the dollar sign… I bet they’d get more US business if they did the automatic conversions. I didn’t notice I could change it myself until just now, and I’ve known of this company for a few years.

kristinalee

And OMG, they are selling that Breville for half of what I’ve seen it go for in the US… Hm…

kristinalee

BTW, I hope wages there aren’t as stagnant as they are here, and have gone up to accommodate the dollar’s loss of value. That’s been an extreme and quick decline. I can’t imagine.

OMGsrsly

My union has processed a 0.045% raise for Jan 1. Super exciting, eh?

kristinalee

Ugh, I’m sorry to hear that. Wow… Unions were strong when I was in Montreal, even the graduate student union I was in (these barely exist in the US).

kristinalee

Honestly, I was jealous of the labor practices there — they were so much better, much higher graduate student pay and minimum wage. It was 2007.

OMGsrsly

Honestly it depends on the institution, if a union was able to form, who was included in the union, and what the union was able to negotiate. UBC is my shining example here on the West Coast, but BCIT is pretty close as well. :)

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80

This is one of the Black Friday teas I ordered through Amoda. The idea of this blend seemed intoxicating.

I butchered the beautiful bag in trying to open it: the instructions give a pull strip which takes you to ripping the pouch, but how to rip is unindicated, so I ended up with the plastic open/close zip strips on the same side. However, I may have proceeded correctly but had a faulty bag to begin with. I hate that. It forces one to run around hunting up an extra tin. Who has an empty tin at this time of year?

Anyway, the smell of the dry leaf is intoxicating too. Quite divine really. The leaf contains plentiful coconut bits and fat pineapple shreds. Pretty blend.

The taste is lovely, but a bit less lovely than one would imagine it would be. To me, the melding of flavours is less smooth than I would like. I don’t quite know how to explain it. It is as if each sip contains disconnected flavours: pineapple, coconut, and tea. Each flavour comes through clearly on its own. There is also the slightest bit of imitation flavour coming through at the end of the sip. Not so much as to tamper with the overall experience, but still.

Perhaps the second steeping will give up a smoother experience.

On the second steeping, the coconut creaminess and flavour come through far more prominently while the pineapple steps into the background. A far milder but still enjoyable cup. The imitation flavour disappears completely.

I may add the slightest bit of Lapsang Souchong to a cup at some point to see how it works with a bit of smoke.

Flavors: Coconut, Pineapple

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 30 sec 1 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML
Fjellrev

I nearly screwed up opening one of those bags too. Such an odd design to get used to, I think.

Hmm, maybe it’s good I didn’t grab this one. Almost did. Adding LS is such a unique idea. Not a fan of the stuff but I’d imagine that smokiness would pair perfectly with the pineapple.

Evol Ving Ness

Do tell how you managed to not screw up because I have another bag or two from Amoda which I have yet to open and I would be so sad to have to run around to find more tins or more elastics or contraptions to keep the tea from losing all its flavour immediately.

It is a nice tea. I’ve only had it for the first time today. The flavours of the pineapple and the coconut are bright and vivid. I thought that the hint of LS might mellow things out a bit. Not that there’s anything wrong with bright and vivid. Maybe it was out of step with the black tea? I really enjoyed David’sTeas Grilled Pineapple Genmaicha with that toasty ricey thing going on, so perhaps that was what I was attempting to conjure up with the LS. I will report back once I have had another cup or two and/or begun experimenting. I hope I haven’t preventing you from trying this tea. It is a nice one.

Fjellrev

I have a couple more to open, and will probably try one a little later so I’ll let you know. From what I remember, I carefully lifted the tab up entirely before proceeding to start tugging at it, if that makes sense.

That does sound worthwhile trying. And thanks for reminding me that I still need to try Grilled Pineapple. Completely forgot that even existed.

Evol Ving Ness

Thank you. I will give it a go. And if it fails again, maybe I will send Teagan a note and report back.

Yes, do try it if it is still around. I really enjoy that one.

Evol Ving Ness

Yes, it is still around. I just checked. A heavy one and a bit expensive for a genmaicha/rooibos. I think I might choose this one as one of my upcoming free teas. https://www.davidstea.com/ca_en/our-teas/grilled-pineapple

Fjellrev

Ok, just opened my last one, and definitely just do it very slowly and carefully. I know that isn’t much of a help but no tins are needed!

How sweet would you say Grilled Pineapple is?

Evol Ving Ness

Did you have to rip the bag? Or just pull the tab?

I’ve had several cups of Grilled Pineapple, but it has been a while. It is not overly sweet. That is to say that it is not a particularly sweet tea when compared to some of DT’s dessert teas etc. The pineapple comes through with more of a pineapple tang than sugar sweet in my recollection. The sweetness that is there gets toned down by the rooibos and toasted rice, so there is that groundedness to it.

Evol Ving Ness

I just took a look at the ratings. The average is 65 while I gave it a 90, hoisting up my initial 81.

Fjellrev

You just have to pull the tab to the right and it’ll make an incision just above the ziplock part.

Cool, I’ll definitely pick some up next time I go.

Evol Ving Ness

Thanks. Maybe that is where I went wrong.

I just found out Zen Tea is having a sale now—last day. 30% off. Code is thanks. Where shall I post this so that people will see it in case they are interested?

Fjellrev

If there isn’t a thread in the discussion forum, maybe there? I wish they had their Chocolate Mint rooibos in stock. SO GOOD. And they got rid of two of my favourites, so nothing for me. What are you interested in?

Evol Ving Ness

Particularly Coconut Island Herbal. But here is my cart so far.
Raspberry Vanilla Rooibos

Rooibos-Vanilla Almond – 10g (0.35 oz) sampler Rooibos-Vanilla Almond – 10g (0.35 oz) sampler

Black tea – Taiwan Ruby – 50g (1.8 oz) zip pouch Black tea – Taiwan Ruby – 50g

Black tea – Keemun Finest – 50g (1.8 oz) zip pouch Black tea – Keemun Finest – 50g (1.8 oz) zip pouch

Qty

Fruit tea – Blood Orange – 100g (3.5 oz) zip pouch Fruit tea – Blood Orange – 100g (3.5 oz) zip pouch

Fruit tea – Sweet coconut island – 100g (3.5 oz) zip pouch Fruit tea – Sweet coconut island – 100g (3.5 oz) zip pouch
This sweet and mild combination of coconut and tropical fruits will transfer you to a tropical island.Ingredients: ap…

Fruit tea – Blueberry Cream – 100g (3.5 oz) zip pouch Fruit tea – Blueberry Cream – 100g (3.5 oz) zip pouch

Evol Ving Ness

Sorry. Didn’t manage to clean that up very well.

Evol Ving Ness

I am now trying to be sensible and whittling my cart down because yanno.

Fjellrev

Have you tried any of those before or you’re just going with 100g of some untried?

Evol Ving Ness

The deed is done. Nice discount. Reasonable shipping. And in Canadian currency. So, yay!

Evol Ving Ness

I have been reading up on comments and making my own list of wants when I get ready to order. I reduced all the 100 gr ones except for the coconut one. And no, I haven’t tried any of them before other than the Milk Oolong. I have tried a few of Zen Tea’s herbals and have been quite happy with them, especially when pitted against the overly artificial ones DT produces. I need uncaffeinnated options (but perhaps I don’t need them immediately).

Evol Ving Ness

I see myself justifying the purchase of more tea. Hard.

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drank La Boreale by Camellia Sinensis
2194 tasting notes

I’m not sure if I knew there was wintergreen in this tea when I got it, but I’m REALLY happy with it. OM NOM NOM.

Quite fresh, but with a really delicate wintergreen freshness, not peppermint or spearmint. It’s kinda like pine forests on a crisp day with snow on the ground. Kinda.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 5 min, 0 sec 3 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML
Fjellrev

Mmm, wintergreen…

rosebudmelissa

I’ve only tried one tea with wintergreen – stash’s merry mint green tea, and it was a fun change of pace. I’ll have to try this one eventually since it’s herbal.

Marzipan

Handmade Tea’s tea this month has wintergreen, I’m looking forward to it.

OMGsrsly

I really don’t like spearmint, and mostly don’t like peppermint. So wintergreen is a nice alternative! It also looks so cool because they just mixed whole leaves and twigs and berries and flowers. Definitely a feast for the eyes as well as the tongue. :)

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84

Sipdown (118)!

Finished off as a cold brew. This is truly a tea representative of ambrosia: it tastes like sweet, fresh honey, dew, and Spring time flowers. The flavour is clean, and the mouthfeel like silk. I don’t know if this is a tea I’d have picked out for myself either, so I’m very thankful for Camellia Sinensis’ inclusion of it as a free sample.

It didn’t last nearly long enough. I’m sure I’ll likely be buying more for myself, as it’s something I fell hard for very quickly…

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84

This is a queued tasting note.

I had a weird/wonky Gong Fu session with this tea, which Camellia Sinensis added a generous free sample of into one of my orders this year.

It wasn’t the tea itself that was weird; just how I prepared it. I only had two infusions and then I just sort of, well to be perfectly honest, just forgot about the tea? I don’t even remember why: I was taking notes on the infusions and then I must have started cooking or watching TV or something else and the tea just sat there. But anyway, here are the notes I took for those two infusions:

- GORGEOUS leaf!!!
- Sweet, honey notes! Like ambrosia? Most dominate flavour
- Very light/gentle overall with a delicateness to it
- However, despite that the flavours are NOT subtle
- Also has notes of spring flowers, red fruits and white peach

After those delightful, wonderful Gong Fu infusions I popped the leaf into a mason jar and cold brewed the leaf (when I finally did remember I was drinking tea) so as to not waste it and get the most out of leaf which clearly wasn’t spent yet.

The cold brew was similar in flavour notes to what was observed in the Gong Fu infusions, just even sweeter and richer with more honey notes and more sweet fruity flavour. However, I also tasted a light finish that reminded me of Easter Buns a little bit? Kind of that sweet, doughy quality with a sort of cinnamon note as well? And of course a fruitier glaze but that easily melds with the honey and preexisting fruit notes.

I definitely look forward to further, more conscious exploration of this tea.

Lion

Love me some Gui Fei. I recently had my mind blown by one that exceeded all others I have tried.

Roswell Strange

Where from, if you don’t mind my asking?

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93

Sipdown (116)!

This one comes from OMGsrsly and I have to thank her for sending it, because it was really interesting and unusual. With the frequency of orders I make with Camellia Sinensis you’d think that I’d have tried this since it was on my wish list for so long, but for whatever reason I never grabbed any. Probably because you have to buy this one in a larger quantity.

I have so many thoughts about this one though…

First off; the health warnings! They’re a little unnerving, no? I mean the pregnancy warning is fine: I have no plans to get pregnant anytime in the immediate future. The parts that concern me are that longer infusions can cause bad cramps and frequent consumption is recommended against. I mean, I’ve certainly been known to lose track of how long I’m steeping something (and how long is "too long). As well, what if I absolutely LOVED the tea? I’d have to ration when I drink it? Not my favourite concept.

When it boils down to it though, this is just super unique tasting and very enjoyable though. There’s such a striking familiarity to the flavour; and yes I can break down that flavour into recognizable notes of citrus/lemon, cedar, camphor, grass, and under ripe green melons but that’s not it. There’s also a thickness to the mouthfeel that makes this really rich despite a more supple/mild flavour and it leaves my lips just slightly sticky?Like I’ve just had something to eat with lots of honey it. There’s something about how those individual notes and textures come together as a “whole” that makes me feel like I’m experiencing Deja Vu.

Sil touched on this too and to some extent I agree with her: it kind of tastes like early morning fresh air. There’s a crispness and naturalness to it that just reminds me of the outdoors. A lot. There’s something else to it too; but I just can’t place it. It makes me feel a little nostalgic and sad, though. Yet, in that sort of silent sadness there’s a peaceful and calming quality. Have you ever just burst into tears and cried? It’s not a pretty thing, but then at the very end when you’re finally done crying you feel so good.

Describing flavour in emotions is a tricky thing but one I’m compelled to do in this moment. Anyway; props to this tisane for tasting wonderful and almost making me have an emotional epiphany and breakdown.

OMGsrsly

That’s a lovely description! Makes me want to have this again. :)

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80

Yay, a green rooibos. I get mostly pineapple from this one, with maybe the slightest hint of banana. I could see papaya being really good in here. I also wish I could have gotten the coconut. I don’t really taste it. But granted, I have a cold right now. Maybe I’m not getting the most out of this. I also let it steep for close to ten minutes so the flavours should be as strong as ever.

I wouldn’t go out of my way to buy more but it’s really good for what it is.

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80

Sipdown (125)!

It’s been a busy, and tiring week at work! I’ve built up a whole week’s worth of missed reviews, so time to crack into those before I have class in a few hours…

And speaking of class, I finished this tea off as a “cold infused juice” which was an optional recipe for the class I’m currently taking, which is tea and food pairings/cooking with tea. Basically, I just cold brewed a larger than normal amount of tea straight into some orange juice. As someone who’s already very comfortable with cold brewing it was impossible to resist trying this out. It’s something I’ve actually been curious about even before this class.

I picked out this tea because I thought the strong floral/rose notes of the tea would really compliment the orange. And it totally did! The flavour pairing was a really solid choice, and I’m happy with coming up with it all on my own instead of following the ‘guide’ of tea/food pairings we received in class. While it IS nice to have that as a reference, I think coming up with good pairings is definitely a skill and one I want to master without a major crutch.

The only issue, I’d say, was that the orange juice was still very strong and while I definitely did taste the tea there was still a lot of competitive flavour from the juice itself. That’s an issue because cold brewing this way already takes a lot more leaf than a normal cold brew would and cold brews ‘eat’ leaf really quickly already. I’m going to try this again, for sure, but I need to play around with how I’m using my “juice” base. I don’t know if that means I’ll use a different kind of juice or if I’ll cut it first with water but some more experimentation is definitely coming.

As for the tea itself; for one I didn’t actually pick out myself to order (it was a free sample) I was really quite happy with it and I’d be tempted to get more with my next absolutely inevitable Camellia Sinensis order. It’ll depend on whether it’s available in sizes smaller than 50g because I wouldn’t want that much. If I can scoop up 25g I’ll be getting more.

Flavors: Floral, Rose

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80

Freebie sample from my last Camellia Sinensis order!

Today in tea chat I had Oolong Owl pick something for me to brew up that I hadn’t tried before ’cause I was feeling indecisive and this is what she chose. So, prior to and during class today I brewed this tea Gong Fu in one of my gaiwans.

It’s a really interesting tea: I don’t have a ton of experience with Chinese blacks. Admittedly, I think I lean a little more towards Indian blacks but I’m open to learning and exploring and trying new things. I wasn’t the most technical about this session; but really when am I ever when it comes to brewing Gong Fu? I much prefer to just drink in the moment and go with what feels right rather than take a more technical/precise approach. There’s a time and place for that, but sometimes tea is best as an experience.

Seven infusions in total:

Infusions one to three had a very dry, astringent initial mouthfeel but none of the infusions were actually bitter. All infusions except for maybe the last one were quite rose flavoured which was a different experience. I’ve definitely drank my fair share of floral blacks but don’t think I’ve had much experience with ones that taste distinctly rosey and certainly not to this level/degree. I quite liked the flavour, though! Then, the first few infusions were more nutty with a woody undertone; a mix of sort of peanut nuttyness as well as a sweeter almond-like flavour. Both almond skin which has a drier nutty taste and then as infusions progressed a more sweet, marzipan-like nutty flavour. There were honey notes too which seemed stronger as the infusions progressed. The middle infusions had a nice fruity quality to them; kind of like red currants? But the first few and last few infusions lacked this flavour. Faint notes of cinnamon, as well but not consistently throughout steeps.

This was a really interesting, enjoyable tea! I’d have never picked it out for myself either, so I’m definitely thankful that Camellia Sinensis added it to my order. They’re probably just adding random teas as free samples, but occasionally it feels like the samples they toss in are more thoughtfully picked out. Not sure, honestly. I’d definitely brew this again Gong Fu except I’ve already got the remainder of the leaf cold brewing right now in some orange juice as it’s the tea I thought would best work for the optional juice infusion from class this week.

keychange

Cold-brewing tea in juice! how neat!

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88

It’s my birthday, so I decided to celebrate with this. I would have preferred some sheng, but this is what was available, so it will have to do. I opened the package and gave these old leaves a whiff. I was picking up some real old tones. I picked up some slight roast, parchment, and just a little bit of dry sweetness. I warmed up my new teapot and cups (Novak :D) and poured these little curls in. The scent deepened into a deep earth and dry minerals. This scent was a lot like a basement in the summer. It’s a good but oddly strange scent. I washed the leaves once and prepared for brewing. The steeped leaves had an amazing scent! I really loved the spice, musk, mineral aroma. I picked up some amazing pine resin scent with a background of smoke. The aroma was so good! The flavor was something unique. The taste began drying with some pleasant sour tones. The sip then developed to an intense pine flavor. I got a nice head high and body buzz from the drink. In later steeping I picked up some maple syrup sweetness. I was able to pull only about four good steeping sessions. The session was decent, but it wasn’t all that amazing. I thought that for the price this should be at least somewhat fantastic. However, it was still a good experience, and I still have some to try out. I will hopefully find a better suited birthday tea…

https://www.instagram.com/p/-HEtTiTGVS/?taken-by=haveteawilltravel

Flavors: Earth, Maple, Musty, Paper, Pine, Pleasantly Sour, Resin, Smoke, Sweet, Wood

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 30 sec 5 g 3 OZ / 100 ML
curlygc

Happy Birthday!

Nicole

Happy, happy!

Lion

Happy Happy Birthday! :D
I often describe aged teas and Shou as smelling or tasting like basement as well, and it’s a positive observation for me too.

mrmopar

Happy Birthday!

Evol Ving Ness

Happy birthday to you!

Evol Ving Ness

It is my birthday too this week and now you have me planning several days in advance what super fabulous tea I will begin the day with.

carol who

Happy birthday!

Haveteawilltravel

Thank you all so much!

KiwiDelight

Happy Birthday! I hope it was wonderful. (belated since I didn’t have internet access)

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86

Puerh Tea TTB. This tea is excellent. It’s fruity with notes of cocoa. It has very little fermentation flavor left for a 2012 tea. I did not notice a heavy fermentation taste that you might expect in a recent shou. I think I get a slight note of camphor here, but very slight. There are no off tastes or wet storage tastes. Camellia Sinensis must have done a good job of storing this tea. This is definitely one I would look into buying if it is still available. I used a little less leaf on this than my usual because there was only 6.6g of leaf left in the original 15g sample. So I think later steeps were a little weak. Nothing more leaf wouldn’t solve anyway.

I brewed this tea twelve times in a 100ml gaiwan with 6.6g leaf and boiling water. I gave it a 10 second rinse and a 10 minute rest. I steeped it for 5 sec, 5 sec, 7 sec, 10 sec, 15 sec, 20 sec, 25 sec, 30 sec, 45 sec, 1 min, 1.5 min, and 2 min. I think with a larger amount of leaf this tea would go twenty steeps or nearly anyway.

Flavors: Cocoa, Earth, Fruity, Sweet

Preparation
Boiling 6 g 3 OZ / 100 ML

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80

A very pleasant asamushi sencha: softly marine with a slight roasted flavour in the first infusion, followed by a surprisingly muted astringency in the second. The third brew produces a refreshingly sweet liquor.

First infusion – 5 g. per 8 oz water, 65 deg., 1:00 min.

Second infusion – 5 g. per 8 oz. water, 65 deg., 2:00 min.

Third infusion – 5 g. per 8 oz. water, boiling, 10:00 min.

Preparation
150 °F / 65 °C 1 min, 0 sec 5 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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77

I was really craving Lapsang this morning, and since I don’t work until one I certainly had time to make myself a nice morning cuppa in addition to whatever I’ll wind up drinking on the commute to work.

This was pretty lovely though; I added a large splash of vanilla creamer to the mug to soften the harsh smelling ash notes and it really complimented the flavour quite a lot. Despite the creamer, the smokey, campfire-esque notes were still very strong but there was just more richness and sweetness than there would have been otherwise/plain. The vanilla was more present in the finish, and the mouthfeel was very full and velvety.

Definitely a pleasant way to start the day.

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77

I spent most of my day drinking this tea.

I bought 50g of it during my last Camellia Sinensis order because I’m seasoning my first ever yixing with Lapsang Souchong and Camellia Sinensis’ version is pretty well reviewed and very affordable. Plus the idea of a “licorice” note present in a LS intrigued me. You can see a picture of my pot here:

https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10205892868334795&set=ms.c.eJxVz8cNwAAIA8CNInrZf7E4r5jvCYNRMclZm8r1aM9Hf~_mGKElFRsewfKmSI0gVp9ohzTIK2SPfzNYRbF7uM6UxYiRrEG0WpMbkCBob31r8Na4vL9EzKw~-~-.bps.a.10205892864334695.1073741829.1051291635&type=3&theater

Doesn’t the little dragon spout just seem SUPER appropriate for a pot dedicated to smoky/ashy Lapsang? Pretty sure I’ve nailed the “matching the pot to the tea” aspect.

I spent A LOT of time researching the best way to season my pot, which is what I did today, and while I was REALLY tempted to use the boiling in a pot method I ultimately played it cautious and am instead going to be naturally seasoning it through general use. While flavour sucking is the big concern about seasoning a pot that way I figured that LS is such an incredibly potent/strong full bodied tea anyway that some flavour sucking wouldn’t be a terrible thing especially if I just overleafed my first few Gong Fu sessions to compensate. And to be fair, today was my first time trying the Camellia Sinensis Lapsang Souchong but I didn’t feel like much flavour was lost.

It tasted like Lapsang Souchong: strong smoke/ash notes and a defined woody taste as well like described on the website/packaging. Certainly, this wasn’t the sweetest or smoothest LS I’ve tasted (there definitely were NOT licorice notes) but it was enjoyable. Enough so I had at least ten different cups worth. The only reason I stopped making cups was because I had to leave to go do laundry. As well, when is Lapsang Souchong ever really smooth? The first taste ALWAYS slaps you in the face with the harsh flavour. You just have to kind of… settle in to it.

Today was a success though! I loved brewing with my yixing, and I’m very happy with the shape/style of it. I can hold everything comfortably and pour with precision and ease. Already, the desire to purchase another one (or two or three) is bubbling up…

rosebudmelissa

That’s a cute pot! I don’t think I drink any one tea often enough that devoting a pot to it would be worth it, but there is something appealing about yixing pots. I think about the only teas I drink almost every day are peppermint or maybe earl grey. Although, I guess I have been getting pretty fond of Bai Mu Dan/White Peony. Lapsang Souchong is a bold choice for a first pot. It’s not one I like straight, but I’m really curious how it would taste in a blend.

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