Tea: A book review


Cover of the book.

Tea: History.Terroirs.Varieties

By: The Camellia Sinensis Tea House ( Kevin, Gascoyne, Francois Marchand, Jasmin Desharnais, and Hugo Amerci.

Table of Contents:

–          Introduction: Different Ways of Drinking Tea

–          From Garden to Cup


  • The cultivation of Tea : In this part of the book I learned about the tea plant and how it comes from the genus Camellia, and the only species that is known to produce tea is known as Camellia Sinensis.This consists of three main varieties:
    • Sinensis: means “from China”; which is the country where tea was first discovered. This variety is known as the most ancient variety used to cultivate tea. This tree can grow to 20 feet. It has small, dark leaves that are light in body. It can last over 100 years.
    • Assamica: This variety was discovered in the region of Assam, India; hence the name. It is grown extensively in India, Africa, and Sri Lanka. It can grow to 98 feet and lives from 30-50 years.
    • Cambodinesis: This variety grows 8 inches. This variety is not as widely used as the other two. It has a good capacity for hybridization with the other two varieties.
    • There is some important vocabulary introduced in this section that becomes useful to know for the rest of this book:
      • Cultivar: a contraction of the expression “cultivated variety”. This is used to define a plant species created through the hybridization selected for its specific characteristics.
      • Terroir: helps define the specific characteristics of a particular region or expanse of land, by examining its soil, climate, altitude and latitude in combination with the expertise of the local growers.
      • Tea Harvests
        • In terms of picking tea, there are three traditional picking styles.
        • “pekoe” means the young shoot located at the end of each stem ( a.k.a. terminal bud)
        • Imperial Picking: “super fine” picking, includes only the bud and the first leaf below it. This is the most prestigious type of picking. Usually only picked once a year to provide a very high quality.
        • Fine picking: the bud and the first two leaves.
        • Medium picking: harvests the bud and the first three leaves.
      • Other cool things I learned:
        • High Tea: a special moment, a break in the rhythm of daily life and a symbol of sharing. Traditional high tea is served with milk and sugar, and accompanied with sandwiches or scones.


–          From one Terroir to another

  • China- This will be featured in a later post. 
  • Japan- This will be featured in a later post.
  • Taiwan
  • India
  • Sri Lanka, Nepal, Vietnam, and the East African Coast

–          From cup to plate

–          Tea and Health

*The bolded parts of the table of contents is what I’ve already read, this book is so detailed that I am taking my time to read this. This is also why I am splitting the book into many posts, so that I may truly show my admiration for such a good book. Stay tuned for a bio on the auhtors later on. *


So far I love this book, I’ve learned so much and I just cannot wait to share it with you! I hope that you consider buying this book if you want to know more about tea. Reading about the different countries make me feel like I’m actually there. The world of tea is so rich with history and it is important that is is shared. I hope you enjoy following me on this journey of tea. Stay tuned for more blog posts:

  • The six tea families: I will dedicate a blog post to each of these teas, as they each have their own story. 
  • China: there will be a few posts on this very historical birth place of tea
  • Japan: Again, I will dedicate a few posts to this lovely country

Happy Thursday!!!


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