Camellia Sinensis

Recent Tasting Notes

90

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95

My Camellia Sinensis package arrived! With a sweet handwritten note and a gift sample of Black Indian tea! :) We are so spoiled in Montreal with Davids Teas everywhere and Camellia Sinensis… Camellia’s teas are slightly more expensive but they are also better quality, and I’m rarely disappointed. Their teas are the only ones I can drink without milk and sugar.

So all five teas I ordered were blind-buys (well, expect for creme of Earl Grey), that’s how much I trust them haha!
And… I’m not disappointed! This tea is such a treat! I tried it both straight and with milk and sugar and it’s equally delicious. It’s heavier with milk but it makes me feel like I’m drinking a hot chocolatea, or teacolate? I wonder if they put flavours in this, but if they don’t it REALLY tastes like chocolate! Also, I don’t really get the pu’erh, though I’m not exactly sure what pu’erh is supposed to taste like…

I can’t wait to get my Chocolate Rocket from Davids to compare. I hope it’s really chocolatey. So! Another Davids package to come (probably on Monday) and I shall be ready for winter (as if…)

Flavors: Chocolate

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 5 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 20 OZ / 600 ML

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Sarsita (Sarsonator) has been kind enough to share her fungus with us. Which admittedly, doesn’t SOUND like a good thing, but in this case it so IS. Along with Sarsy and the Lovely Tea Fairy, The Teaplets had a Sunday morning fungus party. This is our third round of fungus – we started with the 2010 and the 2011 and today was the 2013. Sarsy and I like this one best, while LTF prefers 2010.

This was delicious with a really sweet, earthy-mushroomy taste that I enjoyed quite a lot. The body feel was all relaxation with a slight head buzz. A most enjoyable way to start Sunday – great friends and great tea.

Marzipan

Where has Sarsy been? I miss her sparkle.

MzPriss

She has been around – I promise she’s drinking tea!

TeaBrat

maybe she got frustrated with Steepster. There seems to be a lot of that going around.

Kittenna

And it’s pretty understandable too. I see the dashboard is frozen AGAIN.

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Wow…the licorice is strong in this one. I hoped it would be merely one component of the tea but to my tastes, it has taken over. Seeing as I am not a licorice lover, I am not really a fan. Nonetheless, thank you Roswell Strange for sharing.

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90

Roswell Strange sent me a bit of this in trade and I have to say that it is pretty amazing. There’s a bit of a bite to the end of the sip that I can’t quite track down the reason for but the tropical feeling of coconut and pineapple are very delicious together. I added milk and sugar because I do that for black tea and it’s become a sweet dessert.

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 3 min, 0 sec 4 tsp 25 OZ / 750 ML
Roswell Strange

Hooray! Rio deserves all the love!

Cheri

I love the name.

Starfevre

And then I burned my mouth and can’t taste the second cup :(

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drank La Tropicale by Camellia Sinensis
2158 tasting notes

Well this was disappointing. I have been impressed with Camellia Sinensis so far but this is a huge miss for me, at least as a hot brew. It tastes incredibly artificial and almost has a clayesque flavor that is really putting me off. Every now and then I get a hint of fruit but nothing distinctive and it really isn’t strong enough to redeem the cup. The last of this sample is getting cold brewed or iced but I doubt this is one I will be sad to see go. Still, thank you Roswell Strange for the chance to try this because it is one I certainly might have picked up in an order. Now I know better.

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95

From the Lewis and Clark TTB.

Brewed gongfu-style with gaiwan. Steeping times: 20 sec, 15, 20, 30, 45, 60.

The leaf consists of twisty forest green leaves, whose color brightens when they are first infused. Even though they were picked from the bush long ago, they appear as if their life is retained. At first the aroma is generally sweet and buttery. But as the leaf cools, the notes change: kettlecorn and sweet potatoes with marshmallows (like the Thanksgiving dish), and then squash and zucchini. Each infusion produces a pale green liquor – almost neon – that is medium-bodied, creamy, vegetal and sweet.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 5 g 4 OZ / 118 ML

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88

This is an unusual-tasting tea. It is similar to a FF Darjeeling (possibly as a result of the hard wither each receives), but with more of a tart tang and fruit-like element to it. A FF Darjeeling on steroids, perhaps.

First infusion – 3 g. per 8 oz water, 90 deg., 2:00 min.

Second infusion – 3 g. per 8 oz. water, 90 deg., 4:00 min.

Third infusion – 3 g. per 8 oz. water, 90 deg., 10:00+ min.

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 2 min, 0 sec 3 g 8 OZ / 236 ML
Indigobloom

I think I had one similar to this, but now I can’t recall the name. Doh!

sherubtse

Did you purchase it from Camellia-Sinensis?

Best wishes,
sherubtse

Indigobloom

No it was a free sample from somewhere. Not Camellia-Sinenis. Maybe from a swap

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92

This is one of my favourite oolong teas. I first tried it at high tea at the “Chateau Frontenac” in Quebec city and fell in love with it. It is creamy and buttery with a hint of coconut and a slightly sweet taste. I brew it Gong Fu style and each steep is delightful.
1. Rinse
2. 25 seconds
3. 25 seconds
4. 25 seconds
5. then double the time for each additional steep
95 degrees celsius

Flavors: Butter, Coconut, Creamy, Vanilla

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 30 sec 6 g 8 OZ / 250 ML

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80

This is a black wulong tea and it is smoky, creamy with a taste of dark chocolate and a creamy taste which is more like a caramel cream taste which appears as it is steeped multiple times in the Gong Fu Cha style.
Gong Fu Cha:
95 degree C water in Gong Fu
Rinse
15 seconds
10 seconds
10 seconds
Then double each steep

Flavors: Caramel, Cream, Dark Chocolate, Smoke

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 15 sec 4 g 5 OZ / 150 ML

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100

This is my go to tea, it is the one I drink every morning! It is brisk in the cup with a rich malty flavour. its perfect with a splash of milk and never disappoints.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 5 min, 0 sec

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100

Quite possibly the best jasmine pearls I have ever tasted. The jasmine flavour is present but not too overwhelming like some. The second steep on this magnificent tea is my favourite. This is the type of tea I love to share with friends

Flavors: Herbaceous, Jasmine

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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83

Brewed in a Gong Fu for a total of 8 steeps. The tea is floral, buttery with a taste of pine nuts. It is slightly grassy and it is refreshing. I found the butter and cream taste came out more at the end then at the beginning.

This is how I brewed it:
90 degree Celsius water
Gong Fu
Rinse
first THREE steeps 25 seconds
and each steep after the first three is doubled in time

Flavors: Butter, Cream, Grass, Nuts

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 0 min, 30 sec 6 g 7 OZ / 200 ML

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80

Tea party!!!!

We are starting with the 2010 fungus and moving to newer years later. I think I like this more when I drink it on it’s own, not intending to compare it to the others that I purchased. It’s lightly sweet and less astringent that I remember, though I do feel it has a slightly dry finish.

It gives a nice woozy feeling, which I always enjoy!

http://instagram.com/p/uBQtlJvkc5/

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 0 min, 30 sec 5 tsp 5 OZ / 147 ML
Cwyn

I just ordered my first heicha, looking forward to trying it.

Sarsonator

Do tell! Which type did you get?

Ysaurella

love the cup !

Sarsonator

Thanks! It’s my absolute favorite cup!!!! :)

Cwyn

I got a Guangxi 2011 on EBay, seller lives in Florida and had 3 cakes. I offered 24.95, so $5 off what he was asking. I can’t find anyone else with that same brick, I can find cheaper 2008-9 like at Chawangshop but I’d pay more in shipping.

Sarsonator

Oh super. I will look for your review then. I haven’t tried that kind yet!

Cwyn

I’m betting it will need some airing out, at least to get rid of the storage. Sounds like you should get a brick of this Fu Zhuan. I’ve noticed that 2008-9 heicha is easy to come by, but other years start getting scarce and pricey.

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80

It’s time, tea friends. Time for the 3rd and final tasting of what me and my TeaFFs affectionately call – Fungus Tea!

I made all years using the same method, which can be found on the 2013 note.

Firstly, this smells incredible. Like grapes and fruit leather, specifically fruit rollups. And not just ANY fruit rollup. CHERRY fruit rollups, which always happened to be my personal fave growing up.

And now, the taste… I’m going in!

Not quite cherry fruit rollup, sadly. This oddly has no sweetness and an astringent finish, which neither of the first two teas had. The 2013 was especially sweet, IMO. Neither the 2011 nor 2013 had one trace of bitterness, but there is some bitterness here. I can only speculate that these were from different makers and different types of original material?

In any event, you must drink it hot! As it cools it becomes significantly less pleasant, and more bitter. The nicer aspects are the aromas and the leather flavors. This also leaves a dry finish on the tongue, which I did not notice on the first two teas.

To sum up:

Buy the 2013. But for goodness sakes, people. LEAVE SOME FOR ME! :p
Buy the 2011. It’s an interesting contrast to the 2013 version.
Pass on the 2010, or just order a small sample at first.

I lucked out because I ordered a huge chunk of the 2013 since it was cheaper, and it ended up being my fave.

Here are the first two reviews, for comparison purposes. FUNGUS TEA FTW!!!!
2013 – http://steepster.com/Sarsonator/posts/262092
2011 – http://steepster.com/Sarsonator/posts/262198

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 0 min, 30 sec 5 g 4 OZ / 118 ML
TheTeaFairy

Awesome review! This experience was a lot of fun to follow my TFF darling :-)

Cwyn

I am guessing they may have shifted the recipe a bit to sweeten the flavor.

Sarsonator

Thanks, Fairycakes!
Cwyn, Maybe! I wish I could see the labels to know if they are from different makers. I need to learn more about this kind of tea. :)

Sil

haha good to know…

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83

Well I still like it, but this is nothing like the 2013 I got from CS.

This is a little smoky and less sweet, though it IS still somewhat sweet. It also has more of an aged flavor. A bit less complex. I like it, but I’m super glad that I ordered a much larger block of the 2013!!!!

I admit that it’s hard to rate this on it’s own merits without comparing it to yesterday’s tea because… DAMN.

Here’s yesterday’s tea! http://steepster.com/Sarsonator/posts/262092

And a pic from today’s session! http://instagram.com/p/sgEEP4PkUy/

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 0 min, 30 sec 5 g 4 OZ / 118 ML
Tealizzy

Mmm! PB bagel!

Sil

one left to go right? haha

Sarsonator

LOL yeah! 2010 tonight!!!

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So as a staples employee, working tonight was like working on Christmas, as in it aways crazy busy. When I finally got home, I decided to make a cup of tea and before even deciding what to make, I set it to boil because I knew I felt like having black tea. Anyways, as the kettle heated, I noticed a package on the table from my awesome tea twin and inside was this tea. Immediately, I made my decision and oh what a right decision it turned out to be.

The scent of this brewed cup is sort of buttery but the taste is coconutty pineapple deliciousness. It’s creamy and sweet from the coconut with an amazing pineapple tang to curb the sweetness from becoming cloying. It is really hitting the spot as many Camellia Sinensis teas tend to do so thank you Roswell Strange for this awesome midnight treat!

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100

I haven’t been logging teas much, and I’ve been missing Steepster. How is everyone? I hope all is well!

This tea really works wonders on my mood. Things have been a little wonky lately, but this gave me a nice reset and I’m feeling happy again!

Have I ever mentioned how much I love tea???? Hooray for tea!!!!!

Tealizzy

Yay for tea!! :)

Sarsonator

Love it! Especially fungus tea!!!!

Terri HarpLady

Yay Hurray!

Sarsonator

I’ve been enjoying all your reviews, Terri. You’re on a roll!!!

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100

I know I love A LOT of teas. And I love them with all my heart, but this fucking tea… It’s incredible.

I wasn’t exactly sure how to brew this and I admit to being far too lazy to walk from the kitchen to the living room to grab a device connected to the interwebz to look it up.

Method: 5 g, 4 oz, 200 degrees, 30-60-60 (no rinse), Novak teapot (glazed)

Aroma: Smells like fucking genmaicha. I curse when I get excited.

Flavor: The first thing is that this is fucking SWEET. All on it’s own, with zero additives. I didn’t want to rinse and get rid of all the fungy goodness, so the bag said 4-5 min western style and I made up my own semi-gongfu times. NBD.

This tasted kind of like a black tea at times, but a little like a green tea. I’m having a hard time finding words other than: Good. Yum. Fuckin. MOFO. Nom.

I also bought 2010 and 2011 versions from CS, but I started with the 2013, which was purchased in larger quantity since it was cheaper. For realz, yo. Y’all gotta try this.

I’ll be trying the other years over the next day or 2. Can’t! Wait!!!!

http://instagram.com/p/sdZcesPkZI
http://instagram.com/p/sdZlLtvkZP

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 0 min, 30 sec 5 tsp 4 OZ / 118 ML
TheTeaFairy

I.need.it.

Sarsonator

Everyone does, swearsies. So good.

boychik

I couldn’t find this review. Thanks for the link;)

Blodeuyn

This may be the best review ever. :D

Sil

Appreciate the link :) when you get around to the other years let us know which you prefer :)

Sarsonator

LOL thanks y’all! I will absolutely post the other reviews soon!!!!

Nicholas

I want. I need. Soon.

Sarsonator

N – totally get some. I will drink the 2011 tonight and post a review on that one.

AllanK

I think I will have to buy this.

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94

If your a pineapple and coconut fan do yourself a favor and get yourself some of this tea quick! The bag is full of shredded coconut, pieces of dried pineapple and black tea, in fact, there seems to be more of the first two ingredients in my bag than the last! A brewed cup screams of mouthwatering pineapple and creamy coconut and is simply delicious with a splash of milk. Hope the rest of my Camillia Sinensis tea haul live up to the high standard that this tea has set!

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79

So I have a whole bunch of this one, and for the most part I’ve just enjoyed it the same way since getting it so I figured it would be worthwhile to do something different with it, although I didn’t really do anything drastically different – but still. So here we go: Peking Opera Cold Brew?

This is pretty anise heavy as a hot cup so I don’t know why any part of me thought that a cold version would be any different. I guess I expected the soak to bring out the pear? And it did, but of course it brought out the anise too. Duh. So yeah, this was really anise saturated with pear undertones. Still maintained a “freshness” to it, but the balance between those two main flavours was really thrown off. Not bad, though. Part of me somewhat feels that Butiki’s Pear Jasmin Candies will taste relatively like this, and if that’s the case then if I enjoy them I wont feel nearly as crushed by the fact they wont be available again.

So what next for this one? Well, I recently bought a bunch of Golden Pear liqueur so I think maybe I’ll mix some of that into a hot cup of this one. That might “right” the balance of flavours a little more and what’s better than tea and alcohol? The two best drinks rolled into one…

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79

Wow, this was really, really creamy and anise heavy tonight. It almost totally buried all the pear and base flavour although ultimately both were still partly present. I enjoyed the cup but was overall hoping for something that was a little more balanced out.

And now my whole living smells very strongly of anise.

I think I’ve asked before, but is anyone else watching The 100? A tumblr user made a VERY cool gif based on a suggestion I made, and now I have all the feels. I just want there to be like four more seasons released all at once tomorrow so I have something to mass stream; I hate watching TV shows as they actually air. My heart can’t take it.

Cool thing about this fandom, though, is that pretty well EVERYONE agrees on the ships in it. Like, it’s pretty much a universal constant that the fans agree Bellamy and Clarke are perfect for each other; they compliment one another and bring about the best in each other but are two solid, unique characters who can function on their own too. I mean, there are other totally cute pairing in the series (Octavia and Lincoln, Finn and Raven, etc). but there are really no ship wars.

It’s beautiful!

Kittenna

My roommate, boyfriend, and I all watch The 100, separately. Haven’t watched the new season yet though. I’m not overly into the show for whatever reason – it’s taking a lot for things to grab me lately.

Roswell Strange

I really like it because it reminds me a little bit of LOST – it has the same survivalist feeling and intensity/drama but with a cool space element. You can even compare both the Grounders and the Mountain Men to The Others, in lost. And the character growth/development is very well done in my opinion. I hope you get into it – it’d be nice to have someone to gush with about it!

Kittenna

I never actually watched Lost – my boyfriend recently started it (I believe he’s somewhere in season 2 now), and I can understand the comparison. Perhaps I should watch that one too (though I just started Buffy, hahahaha. Wanted some easy-watching slightly spooky stuff.)

Roswell Strange

Oh man; you have to watch both! Those are both my ALL TIME favourite TV shows ever, though BTVS slightly more. Just slightly though. LOST definitely has a much wider range of characters, and is harder to follow along with (it’s the kind of show where if you miss an episode you’re FUCKED) but the payoff is so worth it, and there’s so much feels! Season Three is my favourite season, for that one. Who are your BFs favourite characters? I always and to the end adored Charlie and Sawyer, but Claire, Hurley, Jin, and Kate were favourites too. And then later on Desmond and Ben. BTVS is great too; and the Scooby Gang gives me uber feels to, but in a different way. I was a fan of the later seasons of BTVS (four onwards) but I’m a HARDCORE Spuffy shipper and those are the seasons that feature him more heavily. I actually got to meet James Marsters (Spike) at Comic Con, and he’s amazing in person!

Kittenna

LOL. I’ll probably focus on one, then the other. I’m in Season 2 of BTVS right now, and I saw that Angel is also on Netflix (though I don’t know its exact relationship to the former (timeline-wise, I assume it’s about Angel lol)… I’m sure it will become clear once I start it. I do know that there’s some sort of something between Buffy and Spike, but that has yet to become clear (I wasn’t completely oblivious to the premise of the show… just mostly. I believe it was deemed inappropriate for me to watch by the parents, and we only had one TV anyhow). It’s neat that you got to meet him in person :D

As for Lost, we haven’t discussed it much, but I’m sure he has favourites. He gets more into shows than I do, I’d say, and also has more time to watch things somehow.

Sil

lost got weird…though not as weird as battlestar… watching the 100 as well, along with way too many other shows lol buffy was a good time.

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79

Last tea of the night.

Made this one when I got home from work simply because I was craving a good, White tea. I’m so tired now though – I’m almost literally fighting to stay awake to write this note. So since I’ve done a more detailed description of this before I’ll just use jot notes and keep things short/simple:

- Strong Aroma of Anise/Licorice
- Very “dewy” in flavour (“fresh”)
- Bold anise/licorice notes softened by ripe pear juices
- Milder Cream/Hay notes
- I slightly oversteeped so there’s a very faint bitter edge

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