334 Tasting Notes


I’ve never had dragonwell before and this my first grapefruit tea as well.

I was expecting more grapefruit flavour but I get it both on dry leaf and in the liquor while sipping.

As many Butiki green teas, I find it better as it cools. The flavour is much more revealed.Really much more present !
I realize I never tried any BT iced…I think I should.

I really enjoy this one almost cold.

Thank you for sharing Sil !

175 °F / 79 °C 2 min, 15 sec

YAY! it’s my favourite grapefruit tea.

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Second backlog of yesterday while Steepster was down.
My second B&B of the day.
I prefered this one to Polka. While opening the tin,I get an incredible scent of alcohol, like a fruit liqueur.I had the same sensation in shop and asked if it was due to the grape presence, the saleswoman said it was due to the fig presence.
The scent is sooooo strong, incredibly strong on fruits and liqueur.
The taste is really more subtile, for the best.
There is quince in this tea, I got it. Hazelnuts as well but was unable to detect the flavour.
It’s clearly an Autumn blend, absolutely perfect for the weather we have actually in France.
A beautiful tea.
Betjeman & Barton may consider to change their tea base with the flavours they are using. I suspect they are using more than often the same for any flavoured tea. It makes teas less interesting to my opinion.
I love character teas :)

205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 30 sec

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drank Polka by Betjeman and Barton
334 tasting notes

Backlog of yesterday while Steepster was down.
Polka was my afternoon tea. It’s an absolute fruity tea, opulent, greedy.
The orange used is not a classic orange but a blood orange, very present in the mix of fruits.
It is difficult to distinguish the difference fruits except for the blood Orange but it is a nice cup of tea.
The main difference of B&B teas with Mariage Frères ones to me is the heavy use of essential oils. They are not blending their teas as MF does. However I suspect they use the same black tea base for every flavour tea, which is not the case for MF blends.
That’s the reason why I think B&B remains a challenger only to MF and not a too much dangerous challenger.
Saying that, don’t get me wrong: B&B teas are using only natural ingredients and natural flowers and essential oils, nothing artificial in their teas. Polka is a very decent tea, pleasant.
But I won’t wake up in the middle of the night craving for a cup of this tea.

200 °F / 93 °C 3 min, 30 sec

I so agree about preferring different bases for different teas – and about Mariage Fréres doing it. I remember being baffled once by somebody complainingn they did not like Mariage Freres black tea base and I was WTF – which base, the one for Marco Polo or Wedding Imperial or Thé au Tibet? All very different!


I see, really weird she/he didn’t get the difference…
Dammann often uses the same tea bases for their flavoured black teas as well but not always. I should continue to taste all my Betjeman & Barton teas to find out if they use other tea bases (maybe in Luxury) but I am pretty sure Polka, Autumn blend, Jour de fête and framboise share the same one.


Of the Dammann teas I have had so far, i think all or nearly have had the same base (though it has only been the samples you sent me and two tins I got here!). And it´ s not a favorite base for me, it tastes almost “thin” somehow – I like Theodor´s base better though I have only had 3 of their flavoured black teas so can not really be sure if it is really the same base!


DF uses a keemun for Charlotte au chocolat but for the other blends I agree, had the same tea base… DF & B&B belongs to the same group…
Theodor is really nice, I need to taste more their teas, I think maybe next month I’ll try to pop up in their shop in Paris

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drank Mélange Hédiard by Hediard
334 tasting notes

Backlog of my first cup of the day.
Mélange Hédiard is a very good citrus tea : strong, really robust-It’s a quite malty tea but without any bitterness.
An ideal tea to begin the day, it wakes you up very well.
I have a drawback to point out but a very light one : the scent of the dry leaves is amazing, fantastic and powerful, there is a difference in the cup, the aromas aren’t so strong – don’t get me wrong : they are absolutely present and divine but a degree under the scent.
A very lovely tea

205 °F / 96 °C 4 min, 30 sec

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This is a tea I had with my brunch in a Parisian café this afternoon.
No real tea choice, so had this one.
Nothing special to say, it’s not bad,it’s not good, it’s meh !

The kind of tea just a little bit better than Lipton yellow

3 min, 15 sec

Oh, Ysaurella, how I wish I could just slide this in a conversation : «I had brunch in a Parisian café…»


ahaha it sounds dreamy and exotic for you on the other side of the ocean but from France it just sounds almost classic…I would love to visit Canada, I am jealous when some of write…I was in Montréal or I was in Vancouver and bought this tea…:)

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I am silly…this is a sample I requested to 2 persons …so thank you both Azzrian and Sil for sharing with me.
Now I am an happy silly woman because I really love this tea and it means I have more to enjoy !

The tea base is really nice and absolutely not bitter. The fruits aromas remind me the type of mature fruits you can find at the end of summer.
They may have used mirabelles for the plum flavour, this is a typical plum in the area (not far, in Lorraine), I get the cherry very well too , a little less for apricot.

I should confess I never went in Alsace (probably one of the lone areas in France I didn’t visit yet) but I would love to.I know many Alsatians and this tea is a nice tribute to the region I think, especially because it touches the high traditional side of this French region.
I am not so much surprised by *momo*’s anecdote with the Alsatian woman, there is something really special with this area of France, something really much more traditional vs the rest of the country.

205 °F / 96 °C 4 min, 45 sec

Oh yes traditional! It wasn’t very nice on Saturday night when our guide told us the grocery store closed an hour ago and would not be open till Monday.


hehe…this is the north side of Europe…I went in Sweden and the stores are opened from 11 AM to 4 PM the saturday !


wow that would be nice! I’d love it if stores were open less time on the weekend

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drank Phenix MF by Mariage Frères
334 tasting notes

Phénix is not a very well known MF blend, no idea why because it is quite good.
It reminds me about Thé du Loup of Theodor EVEN IF there is no chocolate in Phénix but caramel.There is due to the presence of Hazelnuts I think and the smoothness of the both tea bases.
I get honey on aftertaste, really well blended.
I wonder if the tea base is a keemum…we never have these informations with MF. But it’s a very mellow tea.
cteresa this is a tea I would love you to review…if you are still continuing to drink tea at this period of the year (it’s cold in France perhaps the same in Portugal ?)
A very greedy tea.

195 °F / 90 °C 4 min, 30 sec

Sounds delicious!


Hazelnuts and caramel. Sounds yummy!


Oh, it is so nice of you to think of me! I actually got a sample of it the other day in a swap with Toitoi though for some reason I was just not able to add tasting notes (I even posted on the forums about it, but the suggestion was to send an email to site owners and I forgot all about it).
I was trying to add a note to this entry http://steepster.com/teas/mariage-freres/9535-phenix and it is still not working! But I still have some tea, will try to add a tasting note to this entry instead when I have it!


I sent them a note yesterday because I wasn’t able neither to put a note on Phenix, so created a Phénix MF to manage to ;)


oh forgot …Teresa…did you like it ?


I liked it, but I should have it again before saying anything. I did not think it similar to Thé du Loup but I did not notice a hazelnut note. To be totally frank (at the risk of being unfair), there is this Lipton caramel vanilla tea which this reminded me of. Though this is not damning with faint praise, that is a not too awful Lipton tea anyway and the MF was much more subtle. But the Lipton tea was a box I had at work under unusual circunstances once and drunk it all (So not too bad a tea) and I think that combination is a bit too much for me right now. So maybe it is too “greedy” a tea for me – what i liked about Thé du Loup was that it was not cloying, it was more sort of a “dry” chocolate thing and Phenix (and the Lipton) are a bit cloying a bit too much, too rich. If I Remember Correctly. I must have the rest of it for a fair trial!


yes because I didn’t get any cloying taste but a lot of hazelnut that’s funny


I will try again, keeping the hazelnut in mind – I think I still have enough for a couple cups.

Cloying might be more of an association thing than a real thing – not sure I am ready for a caramel vanilla tea no matter how subtle. But got to try the rest of it (and still got a sample from Toitoi unopened,which i was saving for another time).

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I was a little worried seeing the ratings of this tea but really wanted to try by myself too.
This is clearly a mild tea base, but not weak. Inversely, the aromas are strong and especially on citrus. There is a kind of je ne sais quoi really joyful with the citrus here.
The vanilla adds something very interesting to the blend.
Saying that where is the crème brûlée promised by MF ? in the air I would say, like a spirit, an inspiration : there but not really too…

I really like Thé de Pâques and I’m happy to have bought 100g today.
It smells like a mystery blend to me…blended by the Easter rabbit ? arrived with Rome’s bells ? I just surrender to the fantastic aromas especially due to the fantastic way the citrus come with vanilla.

195 °F / 90 °C 3 min, 45 sec

This is a strange one isn´t it? almost like each and every taster tastes something different. Very lovely.


yes I like it very much

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drank Pomme d'Amour by Dammann Freres
334 tasting notes

SIPDOWN – I really loved this tea as you can read in my previous review but I am happy to clear my cupboard as I bought almost 1kg of teas today :S
I kept a little sample of it if a steepsterite wants to try it.


omg 1 kilo of teas…. that sounds fabulous!


yes but remember we are obliged here to buy by 100g ! I have 8 new teas in cupboard “only” lol


Yes but it’s still exciting to have new teas :) especially ones that sound tasty!


1 kg of tea? you go girl! I am looking forward to your tasting notes!


@ cteresa : yes …I would love to send you some before spring really arrives !


Spring, what spring, pfh, it´s like a refining of nastyness for nasty weather. It is admittedly a bit warmer and there are flowers, but it´s cold, rainy and windy all at the same time with total randomness just to make it more cruel. I have had more umbrellas than can be believed… ah, spring.

And I still got some samples from the last time to try (some sniffed, but not yet tried. the christmas tea, oh cherries!), so I am totally undeserving. But maybe later? I might get some new teas at the end of this month, maybe after that?


I sent you the xmas tea with cherries ?I thought have sent the one with apples:S


Good question, must check! I opened all the bags and sniffed (could not resist) and I think I got a cherry note, but could be imagining it! Too many tempting samples – though I admit I am perverse at saving having new samples to try later, in order to have a “new” tea to try saved. I am not making any sense am I?


it does ! I have almost 25 unopened samples …:S


You win then :)

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drank Plum Spice by Kally Tea
334 tasting notes

This is my first plum tea, I have the chance to taste it thanks to Sil
It’s a very mild cinnamon-y tea perfectly balanced with the plum aroma.There is a slight tartness on aftertaste.
The tea base is really nice and present, not too strong neither.
I preferred it very hot rather than just warm, so I need to hurry up to finish my cup !

200 °F / 93 °C 4 min, 30 sec

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First, please forgive me for my English and all the grammatical mistakes you’ll find in my posts.
As English isn’t my mother tongue it sometimes makes things more difficult to express cleverly and accurately what I feel.

I was mainly in black flavoured teas, green as well if not bitter.
I’m now drinking much straight teas because my palate is now developed enough to appreciate them .

My favourite brands are : Mariage Frères,Theodor,Butiki Teas,Dammann Frères, Betjeman & Barton.
My ratings are as follow :

100 to 95 : my darlings; always in my cupboard

94 to 90 : Excellent tea, often in my cupboard

89 to 80 : very good tea, a pleasure to drink it

79 to 70: not bad even nice, why not having it sometimes, but well, not so urgent !

69 to 50 : Meh, deceptive or just not for me – but has some qualities

49 to 30 : I just don’t appreciate it

Under 30 : is this tea ?!?!?


Paris, France

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