I already wrote a tasting note for the green Marco Polo, which can be found here: http://steepster.com/clareborn/posts/189598.
Just like I emphasized there, I tend to pick out teas going on scent alone. That, in its turn, means I rarely, if ever, read others’ reviews or tasting notes before logging my own impressions. This is yet another exception to that rule, which creates some confusion, simply because… I really expected over-the-top, ripe, strawberry. And for me, there is absolutely not a single hint of strawberry to be found here.
The black tea has some of the same booziness as the green, but it lacks the autumnal ripeness that is so present in that one; it’s less tipsy and more elegant, and with a far stronger note of smooth vanilla in the aftertaste.
I enjoy it, but Pleine Lune and Wedding Impérial still rule my cupboard in terms of Mariage Frères blacks. I’m going to go with Sil’s suggestion and try this as a cold brew next time.
[Surreptitiously acquired from Mariage Frères in London, August 2013.]