Crio Bru

Recent Tasting Notes

63

Sipdown (118)!

Well, this is the last of the Crio Bru blends from VariaTEA. They were a little hit or miss for me, though as a whole I found them more enjoyable than Cacao from Herbal Infusions. Still not sure if there were any I’d purchase though.

This one wasn’t super exceptional to me; it came off as very bitter, and I definitely picked up on the cinnamon in it – I just don’t really care for cinnamon so that was a downside.

Less than impressed.

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81
drank Cavalla French Roast by Crio Bru
1700 tasting notes

Backlog; Thank you VariaTEA! I really enjoyed this last night, even though I expected the vanilla to be a little stronger. It was just perfect with a dash of milk.

My kid was pretty sure it was for her, so I guess next time I’ll have to make enough to share.

Cavocorax

Oh, and they have a pumpkin spice one: http://www.criobru.ca/pumpkin-spice-winter-blend/ I’m getting closer to being able to justify a little order!

Fjellrev

OMG this stuff sounds awesome. I’m going to have to get some too. Did you just use a coffee maker?

OMGsrsly

OH MY GOODNESS, I didn’t need to know about that. Must. Resist… :)

Cavocorax

I would try it if I had one because it’s SO THICK. I steeped it in my metal cup from Davids and it looks very sludgy at the end of the steep. But it’s tasty. And with milk it’s very close to hot chocolate!

Fjellrev

Wow, thanks for the review! What an interesting concept.

OMGsrsly

Sometimes I use a french press, sometimes I use a steeping cup. Works both ways, really. The packaging says to not use paper filters, and I will, umm, agree with that.

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68
drank Coca River by Crio Bru
1991 tasting notes

Sipdown (112)!

Thanks VariaTEA for the sample! I’ve been having these Crio Bru blends later at night to kind of wind down to and because they’re caffeine free but since I started the morning with a large brew of something caffeinated and another hot cup of mate I figured I needed something caffeine free to sort of juxtapose between the two.

This was really good; the chocolate taste was strong and very clear. I want to say it was a little less “thick” tasting and less creamy than some of the other blends – but not in a way that lessened the richness of it. It was just different and had a little bit of contrast. As for the “natural notes” present in this one – I absolutely did not get any blackberry (which seems very weird to have naturally occur in chocolate/cocoa) and I didn’t think too much about the green banana when I was having it but doing so now I can kinda see how what I was tasting could be compared to that flavour, it is a little bit of a stretch though.

Both Courtney and VariaTEA have written notes on this so far and have mentioned some bitterness; but contrary to their experience I did not find this to have any bitterness to it. I did, however, think there was a little bit of natural oilyness to it though, which I don’t think either of them brought up or experienced.

Decent overall; wouldn’t stock but would likely drink again.

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76
drank Maracaibo by Crio Bru
1991 tasting notes

Sipdown (128)!

Thank you VariaTEA for the sample! So far, this is the Crio Bru blend I’ve enjoyed the most. To me, it came off a thicker and richer, and as for the “extra” flavour notes in this one (cherry, caramel, nuts) I feel like I at least picked up on a couple of them; primarily the caramel sweetness, but also a little bit of the nuttiness. No cherry though.

It’s kinda nice these Crio Bru blends aren’t all coming off as exactly the same, though.

Also, I just finished the first episode of Australian Big Brother, and I have to say that I’m a fan so far! It’s really weird watching a different format though – and I don’t mean that they’re playing in pairs. But, what’s weird for me is that they just handed someone the HOH title – there was no competition for it, and that totally messed with my mind.

And, the girl from last night (Tre’s date) – she’s here again. So, things going well I’d say.

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60
drank Cavalla by Crio Bru
1991 tasting notes

Sipdown (127)!

Thank you VariaTEA for the sample! I think, out of the three I’ve had so far, this is my least favourite Crio Bru blend thus far – it was chocolate-y but it was also quite bitter, and I was surprised when I looked it up here on Steepster because apparently it’s supposed be cinnamon/coconut and I definitely didn’t get either of those things.

So far Vega Real is my favourite, but I’ve got a few more to try so who knows, right?

Flavors: Chocolate, Dark Bittersweet, Dark Chocolate

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68
drank Maya by Crio Bru
1991 tasting notes

Sipdown (136)!

Probably the Crio Bru blend I would have least likely picked out for myself, mostly because of the Cayanne in it. I am typically not a spice fan (I say as I sit at my laptop drinking Spiced Rum and Coke). But VariaTEA sent this one to me, and I’m grateful for the chance to try it despite my reservations.

I would describe the chocolate flavour in this one as “Semi-Rich”; it’s there, but a little more thin spread than I personally like my “hot chocolate” as well as compared to Vega Real (or at least my first cup of that one). Only somewhat surprisingly, there is some heat to this from the cayenne. Not enough to be uncomfortable, but it does sit at the back of your throat for quite sometime.

Overall I’d say this cup was average; really it’s the cayanne that really caused me to lose interest. I’m just not so big into spiced stuff (she says as she still drinks her spiced rum)…

Flavors: Chocolate, Spicy

OMGsrsly

Maybe mix the rum with some of the chocolate? And some whipped cream? :D

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70
drank Vega Reál by Crio Bru
1991 tasting notes

Sipdown (135)!

See, one of the problems with my queue building up is that when I do a massive stream of posts like I’ve been doing today, sometimes I end up writing for the same tea twice like right now. And while I don’t care, I feel like sometimes that feels redundant to you all?

But anyway here’s what I wrote down for this last one:

- Weaker than the last cup
- Still tasty though
- No strawberry/citrus: just cocoa

It’s probably worth noting that this was weaker in flavour than the first cup but I didn’t change the amount of leaf, water or steep time I used. So I don’t know what that inconsistency is about…

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70
drank Vega Reál by Crio Bru
1991 tasting notes

Thank you VariaTEA for all the Crio Bru samples!

I’ve begun to dabble with them, and so far I think I definitely like them better than Cacao from Herbal Infusions. These seem to be a bit richer in flavour. But how much am I supposed to be using? I looked up what Crio Bru recommends on their site and it was something like 2 tbsp.!? That’s a lot. So I went with 1 tbsp. which still felt excessive to me, but I guess it yielded a nice cup.

It was chocolately, that’s for sure. This specific one (I just grabbed the first sample in VariaTEA’s package to try first) is supposed to have “Citrus and Strawberry” notes in it. Like, notes naturally found in the cacao. I didn’t get that – I just got a nice cup of hot chocolate type stuff, so I guess HI might have the upper hand in that department. I don’t know; we’ll see how I feel about the other blends I suppose.

Flavors: Chocolate

Cameron B.

Jelly! :)

OMGsrsly

I find that steeping longer = less grounds/leaves are needed. So I use 1 (heaping) tbsp per 16 oz cup, cover it with a tea towel (uhh, I need a cozy!) and steep 15-20 minutes. I just haven’t been logging it. :)

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drank Cavalla by Crio Bru
1938 tasting notes

This is much lighter and creamier in comparison to Coca River. It still tastes like dark chocolate but the bitterness is far less prominent. I don’t necessarily detect coconut like Courtney did but it is certainly enjoyable nonetheless.

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drank Coca River by Crio Bru
1938 tasting notes

So I decided to do a side-by-side taste test of of my Crio Bru’s to see if I actually detected a difference. To choose, I just blindly reached into the box and grabbed two and it turned out I grabbed Coca River and Cavalla. That means I am doing the same comparison as Courtney coincidentally and my findings are essentially the same. This one is definitely the more bitter of the two cups. Not overly bitter as in it’s not drinkable but bitter enough that I know I don’t want to restock when the sample is finished. Essentially this is like drinking melted bittersweet chocolate. Not horrible but not the best either.

Courtney

That’s how I felt too. It’s not terribly bitter, but I would restock on others first.

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drank Vega Reál by Crio Bru
689 tasting notes

I had a pretty shit day at work and all I wanted was a cup of comfort this evening, something funny to watch, and to turn in early.

We went to the Modest Mouse concert last night which was amazing as a sidenote.

I decided to brew up this one and compare it to Cavalla, which I also have next to me now. Cavalla has become my comparison of choice for my Crio Brüs just because. The Vega is fairing better than Coco River in that there is no bitterness, but I don’t know that I’m getting any strawberry or citrus notes, it generally just feels a bit thinner than the Cavalla.

I still really enjoy this one though.

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drank Cavalla French Roast by Crio Bru
689 tasting notes

What’s the difference between Cavalla and Cavalla French Roast? I don’t think I can discern any. They are both creamy, dark chocolate with subtle coconut hints.

YUM.

Cameron B.

I found a local healthy food store that carries one of the Crio Bru varieties and I was excited! I didn’t buy it, but I may have to soon! :)

OMGsrsly

Do it, Cameron! :D So much better than the cacao shells.

Courtney

I agree. I don’t know that I really need cacao any longer now.

Sil

i do…only for LB mixing though..

Courtney

I’m going to mix this one with LB and see what happens soon.

Sil

haha let me know!

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78
drank Maracaibo by Crio Bru
1700 tasting notes

Thanks VariaTEA! With this tea I’m down to 200 in my cupboard – FINALLY. Also, I have ZERO orders incoming and ZERO plans for orders so I am very happy.

I really want to get some of this though. At some point. I’m happy VariaTEA told us about it because it’s delicious. I steeped it for 5 minutes and then added a little milk and it tastes a lot like hot chocolate. And without all the calories…. Yes…..

OMGsrsly

There’s Courtney, you, and me all drinking Crio Bru this evening! :)

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drank Cavalla by Crio Bru
689 tasting notes

In my comparison this evening with Coca River, I can totally get the coconut in this awesome cuppa now. It adds to the creaminess, and is ever so subtle, but it’s there.

Perhaps that’s why I’ve been reaching for this one the most.

VariaTEA

I think tomorrow after work, I will start doing comparisons of these teas. I will be sure to watch for the creaminess in this one and the bitterness in Coca River

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drank Coca River by Crio Bru
689 tasting notes

I have come to the conclusion that I’m not huge on Coca River. My first steep last night had what I thought was a hint of bitterness that wasn’t in the Crio Brüs I’ve been drinking copious amounts of. So this evening, I decided to do a comparison between Cavalla and Coca River and the bitterness is unmistakeable. Much easier to definitively notice it next to the pure creamy deliciousness of Cavalla.

OMGsrsly

Good to know that I picked a good one, randomly off the grocery store shelf. :D

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drank Maya by Crio Bru
689 tasting notes

I’ve been steeping a cup of Crio Brü daily, or twice daily, or three times daily. But that’s not important. What is important is that it is delicious. Dark chocolate delicious. However, thus far I haven’t deciphered any noticeable differences in the ones I’ve tried. That is, until Maya.

Maya reminds me of something I’ve had before, but I can’t put my finger on it. There is a spiciness to it, but more like Christmas cookie spice, not hot pepper spice. It is delightful. Christmas cookie spice dark chocolate in a mug. Perfection.

As far as the other Crio Brüs, I’ll be doing some comparisons for sure.

Cameron B.

Sounds similar to Mexican hot chocolate, yum! :)

Courtney

Almost like that, yep.

Sil

this only makes me laugh because in April you guys were all like whatever..and jones and i were like BUT BUT LOOK! and now you’re all going crazy insane on the ordering and stuff lol

Courtney

I missed it all in April haha. I only started noticing you guys with it when VariaTea got her order! Thank you exams, for putting me behind on trending teas. :P

Sil

haha

VariaTEA

I am glad I can bring it to your attention Courtney. Though Sil is how I found it and OMGsrsly is how Sil found it (I think) so it all works out lol.

And the reason this stands out is because it is the only one with flavors added. All the others just get their different notes from the beans themselves.

Courtney

Ahh I thought this one had flavours from the beans themselves too. But it is still tasty, even if there are flavours added. I can’t wait to try the Pumpkin one.

VariaTEA

Not till fall though. Pumpkin isn’t really a summer flavor :P

Sil

whatever. maybe i’ll just get the pumpkin one now…

Courtney

I’m thinking the same thing Sil. J and I made a pumpkin pie last week. I love pumpkin all the time.

Sil

hahahaha i prefer it in the fall but i’ll drinking it most of the time :)

OMGsrsly

LOL. And I found it through a local friend. :D

OMGsrsly

Oh, I was going to mix up some club soda and lime and the last of the gin, but maybe I’ll have some of this instead.

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76
drank Maya by Crio Bru
1938 tasting notes

My Crio Bru sampler pack arrived today with a free sample of their chocolate covered cocoa beans! Yum :)

This particular blend is like melted dark chocolate with a dash of cinnamon and just enough cayenne pepper so you feel the slight burn at the back of your throat. Very, very nice.

Sil

so they are tasting different? hehe at least so far..

Cameron B.

The sampler pack sounds amazing! Too bad it’s Canadian orders only. :(

VariaTEA

Sil, this is the one with cayenne pepper, cinnamon, and vanilla added so it is bound to be different. The others all have different “notes” that come from the beans themselves so I am guessing they will probably be harder to tell apart.

VariaTEA

And Cameron, I am sorry to hear it is only for Canadian orders. That is certainly unusual.

Sil

looking forward to seeing your other reviews… i’m kinda wondering if their nibs could be a replacement to stupid HI

Courtney

Gah, what is this new company? I have been away too long evidently.

Sil

Crio Bru – jones mc jones found it when i was in vancouver so i bought some, brought it back with me, introduced variatea to it and she just bought the samples pack lol

Sil

http://www.criobru.ca/ i can send you a sample if you like courtney, may take me a few days but i have after dark set aside for you too

Courtney

Neat! Which dark do you have set aside?

Sil

“after dark” the rooibos… lol but i’ll set aside the crio bru that i have too

Courtney

I was going to say. DarK? Hmm. Haha! Yay for new teas to try.

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77
drank Maracaibo by Crio Bru
4942 tasting notes

cold brewed this in water just to see how it fared…its interesting for sure. I prefer it hot brewed and then poured over ice but it was an interesting experiement lol. tastes like really rich chocolate icing.. or something lol

Preparation
Iced 8 min or more

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77
drank Maracaibo by Crio Bru
4942 tasting notes

variaTEA thought she was being helpful when she made this listing but all that means is that now i HAVE to put it in my cupboard whereas before i could pretend that it wasn’t eta and so therefore didn’t need to be added lol. I had this one iced in omgsrsly style tonight when i got home after a very long day. Let me tell you, the only thing better was addeing a splash of criollo to this for a bit of sweetness and alcohol ha!

VariaTEA

My bad. Honestly, I made the page cuz I am anal and figured Cavalla was on here so this should be too

Sil

Lmao you know I’m just giving you a hard time silly

OMGsrsly

Ohh, good idea Sil! I’ll have to find some booze for it.

VariaTEA

I know. Don’t worry. I will make pages for ALL the Crio Bru teas and then I will share them with you so you have that much more tea :P

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87
drank Maracaibo by Crio Bru
1938 tasting notes

I tried making this one iced but messed up all the measurements so it turned into a watery mess. I would be sad about ruining the last of the sample Sil gave me (thank you!) if I didn’t have some of this on the way.

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87
drank Maracaibo by Crio Bru
1938 tasting notes

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87
drank Maracaibo by Crio Bru
1938 tasting notes

This is a big ole cup of nutty chocolate deliciousness. So good! And combined with coconut almond milk? Amazing! Thank you Sil for sharing! It didn’t take much to convince me to place an order with the company.

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drank Cavalla by Crio Bru
1481 tasting notes

Iced. With cream. Again.

I hung out with my mom this weekend, and it was awesome. I ate way too much good food (Gluten free crab eggs benedict! Triple Sec (hah! wrote “Triple Sex”) creme brulee!), went to the farmer’s market, bought cherries, visited a bunch of fruit and artisan stands, went shopping in Courtenay, convinced mom to buy a really nice shirt, bought more tea. :)

I also got loads of herbs and spices, and a gluten free lamb pie. Also gluten free pizza hand pies. Now I am home. And exhausted. And will probably be woken up in the morning by the sweet sound of jackhammers outside my bedroom window, as the back parking area is being repaved this week.

So. Yeah. How’re you doing? :)

Preparation
Boiling 8 min or more 6 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML
yyz

Hmmm, back to reality. Sounds like a great weekend. I just had a pretty interesting discussion with an aliexpress dealer about a whole bunch of other teas from Shandong quite a few that I hadn’t heard of and some that I had, but he gave me a better understanding of. It was pretty interesting.

Nxtdoor

Whenever I have a great weekend, it makes it that much harder to return to work on Monday. Cause I just want more Sunday. Don’t we all…

Sil

What are these things you call week ends?

Nxtdoor

Lol. Sil, that makes me think of Downton abbey. “What’s a week end?”

Sil

Hahahahahaha

OMGsrsly

Yeah, I don’t wanna go to work today. Can I just take the whole week off? :) Sil, weekends are occasional times when you don’t have to work. ♥

The tea store was too busy to geek out, so I just got a couple different ones. They carry purple tea but at 50g minimum it’s really expensive.

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drank Cavalla by Crio Bru
1481 tasting notes

VariaTEA, you are genius.

I was sad that it was too hot to enjoy this chocolatey goodness. So she suggested I ice it.

YES.

I added 2 tsp sugar, which was too much. 1 tsp next time. But otherwise:

4 tbsp Cavalla (I know)
10 oz water
1/4 cup or so cream
ice

Brew the Cavalla for 10 minutes, pour over cream and ice. Sip. Be blown away by the rich, bitter (sweet if you added sugar) chocolate goodness. It’s not chocolate milk, really, but it’s so so good. :)

Flavors: Dark Bittersweet, Dark Chocolate

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 8 min or more
VariaTEA

I am glad you tried it this way. I plan on doing this when my order arrives.

VariaTEA

Or perhaps with the last of the sample Sil gave me.

OMGsrsly

Haha. I’m going to resteep the bits and make more. MOAR CHOCOLATE! :) It’s really really good.

VariaTEA

I just steep it like tea. Do you use a french press to make it?

OMGsrsly

This would be really good with coffee ice cubes. Hmm.

OMGsrsly

I’ve done both. I like the French Press because the screen is finer (and also I can mix coffee in easier…).

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