Camellia SinensisEdit Company
Popular Teas from Camellia SinensisSee All 413 Teas
Popular Teaware from Camellia SinensisSee All
Recent Tasting Notes
Y’all already known that with oolongs I tend to lean a little more dark and roasty, but the afternoon I picked this up was one where my mind was a lot more fixated on the idea of holding on to the last bit of Summer instead of embracing Autumn. The creamy floral aroma of the dry leaf, in particular, really enabled that feeling. It’s interesting sipping on it now because it does have a lot more of those Spring/Summer floral top notes like peony, sweet pea blossoms, gardenia, and – though it’s not floral – fresh coconut water. The finish is buttery with vegetal notes somewhere between crisp and snappy and more tender and “cooked.”
At the same time, I’m having this session from my normal tea space by the window facing the park across the street, and I can see the first yellow and orange leaves popping up in the trees. I feel acutely aware that this is a moment of transition, which is an odd sensation to hyperfixate on…
Song Pairing: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xAZ6oesZozk
Whisked this up alongside a matcha custard mooncake!! I love the soft floral note that comes across so clearly – it compliments cool, crisp flavours of cucumber skins and sugar snaps. Admittedly, I’m usually more of a flavoured matcha fan than straight matcha, but that’s only because I am not the biggest lover of the more oceanic umami notes present in most Japanese green tea. This matcha, however, is one of a handful of exceptions to that rule. It’s just exceptionally accesible for a culinary grade, with a natural sweetness that makes it ideal for food pairing!
Song Pairing: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=liZtTKAdONk
Each steeps starts on a creamier, more buttery note but as these beautiful leaves really opened up the array of aromatic, fresh and delicate floral notes really (pardon the pun) began to fully blossom. Peony, orchid, and lilac. The tail end of the sip was a touch more green and vegetal, with a mild fruitiness that made me think of apple skins. I did have to keep mentally on top of my steep times as this Dong Ding does lean more astringent than desirable when brewing parameters are too relaxed, but the flavour payoff was well worth the attentiveness. Such a wonderfully creamy oolong!
Song Pairing: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UglqJKIskoU
This was a gift from Derk, thank you so much!
I had no idea quite how to brew this beautiful tea, which looks like long twigs and pine sprigs. Camellia Sinensis’ website recommended 3g to 500ml at 194F, and I mostly followed that, except I had a little over 4 grams and just dumped it all in my 500ml teapot so I wouldn’t have a weird amount left over. Steeped for five minutes.
The dry leaf has a really fresh, pine aroma. Steeped, I have a harder time describing the aroma… still a bit of pine, a citrusy zing, and a soft florality I can only describe as the smell of cotton sheets straight out of the dryer. The taste has a wonderful pine overtone that lingers on the tongue, with a lemon citrus note and something a bit woody or earthy underneath… like a cross between oats and bark.
Definitely relaxing… I normally sleep through my weekends so I’m not going to say this tea caused drowsiness, but my nap definitely felt very restful!
I put the spent leaves in some cold water and added the remains of my now-cold-after-napping teacup and will see how that turns out for iced tea. Not sure how well the spent leaves will fare cold-infusing, but no harm in trying. I figure even slightly piney-tasting ice cold water would be okay in this heat we are having here.
Flavors: Bark, Camphor, Cedar, Citrus, Floral, Lemon, Oats, Pine
Random tea of the day!
I thought I’d start doing daily random teas again, just to help mix it up a bit from only sipdown teas. Spreadsheet to the rescue! :P
This is such a lovely tisane, but I tend to love evergreen notes in tea anyway. Here, they’re the focus, resulting in a lovely refreshing yet resinous blend with hints of fresh grass and a subtle blueberry sweetness. So evocative of winter to me, but also light and soft enough that I’m happy to sip it any time of year. :)
Also, I’ve been considering experimenting with tea blending lately, so I find unflavored blended teas like this really inspiring. :3
Flavors: Blueberry, Evergreen, Fir, Forest Floor, Grass, Pine, Resin, Sap, Sweet, Woody
ashmanra’s Sipdown Challenge – “A tea with more than 5 ingredients”
When I saw this prompt, I immediately started thinking about which tea from my cupboard would possibly have the most ingredients. I didn’t actually go through and check them all, because I’m too lazy for that. But I settled on this tisane, which has 9 ingredients (and which I hadn’t yet tried).
Now I love woodsy teas, so of course this evergreen concoction is right up my alley. This has two types of fir, as well as spruce AND juniper. Plus Labrador tea, which apparently also has a piney flavor. I was a bit afraid it would be like licking a pine tree, but actually it’s quite lovely.
The main flavor is definitely those resinous evergreen notes, and I do taste a variety of them – some more sappy, others leaning a bit toward sage, but also with some fresh and sweet nuances. And then that sweet blueberry comes in and really smooths the edges of the whole thing, while also adding a subtle syrupy base note.
Lovely, and a perfect companion for contemplation when winter comes around.
Flavors: Blueberry, Earthy, Evergreen, Fir, Herbaceous, Pine, Resin, Sage, Sap, Smooth, Sweet, Syrupy
An excellent daily drinking Matcha. This tea is processed well and has a sweet vegetal flavor like fresh snap peas, slightly bitter lettuce, and sweet with a mineral note that keeps it interesting. One of my favorite value for price paid matcha teas.
One of my favorite Silver Needle White Tea! I brew it western style, because it provides at least 3 heavy duty infusions. The first steeping is rather floral at 195F for 5 minutes, with some fruity interplay and some vegetal notes. Delicious. Subsequent infusions are much the same with a nuttiness taking the forefront with a fruitiness. I aged mine out for a year, and it aged quite gracefully.
The body sensation is wonderful. Extremely relaxing, and though talking about health benefits is a faux pas, it relieves my inflammation to an extent.If you see this in stock, it’s worth every penny.
Flavors: Floral, Fruity, Nutty, Vegetal
Sipdown! (19 | 174)
This one was a bit odd. The description sort of emphasizes the chocolate and berries part, and lists “a touch of mint”. However, to me this has quite a strong menthol note to it, and I don’t really even notice much of the fruit or the chocolate.
I think maybe it’s the combination of peppermint/spearmint and the cardamom that’s giving me menthol? And maybe the coriander as well? It all comes out tasting a bit medicinal to me, and then the black pepper leaves a tingling sensation on my tongue. Really it tastes more like a chai with mint added than anything resembling “gourmet notes”.
Not what I expected, but was interesting to try…
Flavors: Black Pepper, Cardamom, Medicinal, Menthol, Mint, Peppermint, Spices, Spicy
2023 sipdown no. 66
I forgot to add this to my cupboard, so sadly no satisfaction from watching my cupboard number drop. I don’t really order green tea (though always happy to try it in swaps), but this one was so intriguing being the only tea production in Bhutan, and from an all-women cooperative!
There’s a definite seaweed-esque smell once steeped. However, this fades away in the taste, which has a vegetal flavour, with very subtle hints of sweetness and an edge of bitterness (that may have some from the water temperature, because in previous cups it hasn’t been as prominent).
The second steep is also tasty, with perhaps an edge more bitterness, but also more sweetness at the end of the sip.
2023 sipdown no. 64
This tea is really beautiful to look at — rolled leaves with a unique shine and purple-blue in colour. The maltiness of this tea is heavenly. It’s somehow light-medium bodied with an incredible natural honey sweetness that cuts through the malt. I would re-order another 50g of this one.
Been using this tea a blend-making tea, just realized that I haven’t tried this on it’s own! I’ve made myself some smoked early grey, smoky vanilla black, and am plotting making a chai with this tea as well. I’m a huge smoky fan, so it’s very satisfying to have an everyday LS to mix with other teas.
On it’s own it’s fine. It’s not reinventing the wheel, but it is a good base tea. The chopped leaves have longevity while steeping, and the BBQ smokiness is complimented by a lingering sweetness. It’s a great, blendable tea!
In my last Camellia Sinensis order, I got a mystery teabag as part of a contest, and if you identified what it was, you could win $500 worth of tea. Unfortunately, I only looked at the teabag after the contest was over, so here we are. At least I know what it is! I steeped 3 g of leaf in a 355 ml mug using 185F water for 3:30, 4:30, 6, and 10 minutes.
The dry aroma is of kale, spinach, hazelnuts, and sunflower seeds. The first steep has notes of spinach, kale, lettuce, green beans, sunflower seeds, hazelnuts, earth, and umami. I can sort of see how the vendor says it is herbaceous. The finish is a little drying, but it’s not particularly bitter, though more bitterness comes out as it cools. The next couple steeps accentuate the beans and hazelnuts, with an earthy, herbaceous, vegetal background. The final long steep is vegetal and grassy.
I certainly feel like I’m getting my veggies with this one, and though this isn’t a bad thing, I can’t see myself drinking it regularly. Still, I’m glad to have tried a tea that I normally would have ignored, especially because it was pretty good!
Flavors: Earth, Grass, Green Beans, Hazelnut, Herbaceous, Kale, Lettuce, Spinach, Sunflower Seed, Umami, Vegetal
Sipdown! Man, this sipdown didn’t take long once I unearthed this tea. The last couple cups of this was a bit more intense on account of the crumbs left at the bottom of the bag, but the malty chocolatly whoppers flavor was still deliciously present throughout.
I think I may be down to my last Chinese black tea…. Whatever shall i do???
Drank this tea for Ashmanra’s Oldest Black Tea prompt!
Oh yeah, this is my oldest black tea for sure. I think CS has changed packaging at least twice since I bought this tea :) I tend to finish black teas faster than any other tea kind, maybe because I find them more versatile and less finicky. That and when I share tea with people, I know a nice black tea will be a crowd favorite.
Even as old as it is, the flavor is as smooth and bold as ever. The cute lil swirls of golden fuzzy leaves give the tea a great malty kick. There’s an earthy sweet potato note that makes it go down very easily. No wonder I hoarded this one for so long, if this was one of my first forays into tippy chinese hongcha, I wouldn’t want to say goodbye to it either. Too bad, I know it’s not going to last long in my office stash hehe
Flavors: Caramel, Dates, Honey, Malty, Sweet Potatoes
Meh. This is perhaps my oldest green tea, if memory serves me correctly. I’m sure that if this was fresh, the flavor profile would be so much more lush. but this tea may well be damn near 9 years old XD
The leaves are still gorgeous, if not a little grey. I still see the beautiful fuzzy bunny tails and the craft of these flat leaves, but the flavor leaves much to be desired. It’s not bitter in any sense, but very faintly vegetal. If la croix did tea……
Note to self: If you get a spring green tea, you best drink it within the year!!! Aging isn’t for every tea. Not even this one. Boo.
Brewed usually at boiling, 400ml water, for 3 minutes at a time in my steeper basket. I’d Gong Fu’d it in my Gaiwain, however I feel like it really shines with heavy handed brewing. The first infusion is Milky and Woody undergrowth, the second infusion is Milky sweetness with Wet wood, and the third is basically a ligther milkyness with wet wood.
Absolutely no bitterness, and quite economically priced. How can I say no?
Flavors: Milk, Milk Chocolate, Wet Wood
I only had a few grams of this from a sample but made the best of it.
Wood, minerals, and a slightly fruity black tea. Good balance through the body so it is not overpowering to the senses. It reminds me of a Shui Xian I had but with a smoother profile. (That could be a result of the shape of the leaves, my Shui Xian was a bit crushed.)
Pretty good, mild but flavorful through the whole cup. I’ve had better but I would gladly drink this as it is not harsh and pleases the palate.
Flavors: Dried Fruit, Mineral, Wood
This Tea REALLY opened my eyes as to the potential of Oolongs. I didn’t know how to eyeball the weight, so I simply put the entire sample pack of about 10 to 13 grams in my 350ml Kyusu, with about 200ml of water. I opted for non linear brewing times, starting with a 25s first steep, and dropping down to 10 to 15 seconds on the second, adding more time as needed.
Each infusion is very consistent, and the notes you get from it are very dependant on Temperature. As you get closer to the 205F mark, All of the lovely milky notes come through, together with a vegetable, almost Umami undertone. The Milky taste and silky smooth mouth feel really pleasantly surprised me, as it was the first time I’d gotten that note from a tea. Quenching and Mouth Watering.
I added time to what ended up being 2 hours worth of infusions on each steeping, and the leaves just kept giving and giving. The tasting notes transformed a bit throughout. It started Milky, vegetal, with a hint of a fruit I couldn’t identify, and held those notes while the floral and fruity nature expanded in later infusions. Absolutely mouth watering. The liquor was a luminescent, glowing green. After 2 hours of about 1.7 liters worth of infusions, I’d decided to give it a 2 minute steeping at 210F. That last steeping held up, leaning heavily into the vegetal and floral, while keeping those Milky and Umami notes.
When it was all said and done, those tiny pellets expanded into small to medium sized leaves that completely STUFFED my Gaiwan when they expanded. While the amount of leaf was indulgently large, I didn’t regret it for a second. I was left with a calm, warming, lucid body sensation, and a milky sweet aftertaste.
This was an excellent baptism into Oolong. I’d ordered several others, which I cannot wait to try! I want to take a moment to recognize this Vendor, as well. With hundreds of teas to choose from at any given time at good prices, I regard them as the Top vendor in all of North America, let alone Canada. They are true tea experts that know what those of a discerning taste want in their cup.
I very highly recommend this Oolong if the tasting notes are in your lane. It is very consistent in its milky/vegetal notes, with pleasant floral/fruity nuances that pop up through many, many infusions. Now that I’ve totaled the sample pack, I am going to order a big haul!
Flavors: Floral, Fruity, Milk, Vegetal
I prefer to brew this one Western Style in my tea basket, when I want a mug of something good and invigorating to sip on. Usually 3 to 4 grams of leaf per 400ml, 4 minutes each steep.
This Black Tea is complex, yet not finicky. On the first infusion at 200f, I was pleasantly surprised. It is silky smooth, with very little astringency. Dark Chocolate married with a Woodiness, nuttiness, and a slight malt. It goes down very easy, because it’s absolutely delicious. Absolutely devoid of any bitterness, despite the heavy handed nature of Western style brewing.
On the Second infusion, I dialed up the temperature to 205f, and used about 300ml water, and let it steep for close to 5 minutes. While the liquor was a touch lighter, it was a delicacy on my taste buds. Milk chocolate now, still married with the Woodiness, but the Nuttiness really shone through and is persistent in the aftertaste, even 10 minutes afterward.
This is a great tea to wake up to and to brew western style when I’m feeling too lazy for Gong Fu, as it is incredibly forgiving and hard to overbrew. It also gives me an great caffeinated zip to put some pep in my step.
I highly recommend this if you want a Black Tea without much bite, that is very savory and sweet both in aromatics, and taste.
Flavors: Almond, Cocoa, Milky, Woody
Drank this session in the warm glow of the rising sun!! Even though green tea isn’t usually my jam, I wanted to try this one because of it’s more unique terroir! My initial thoughts were pleasant surprise at both how buttery and bean-y the medium bodied liquor was. Definitely on the softer side, and the delicate vegetal notes had a quality that almost gave the illusion of them “melting” on the palate. Alongside those notes were flavours of Timothy hay and straw that I would usually expect to taste in white tea. It was a curious session, in an almost exciting sort of way. I’m rather unfamiliar with teas from Bhutan in general, and I would love to explore further – something tells me other tea types, like black tea, from this region could be strongly up my alley!
Tea Photos: https://www.instagram.com/p/CnP0BeBOrGO/
Song Pairing: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=325NwgCMdMg