Dammann Freres

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I believe this is the right tea. Mine came as a sample tea sachet with a Dammann Freres order. I have had it for quite a while so it is quite possible that the quality has suffered.

First, I confess that my initial experiences with Darjeeling as a tea newbie were not good and it was all my fault. I didn’t know better and made them just like any black tea. After I learned a bit and made them as they should be, I liked them a bit more, especially one or two special ones. I preferred Chinese black teas over Darjeelings and gave up on most Indian tea altogether, except for a few blends.

I feel that this makes me unqualified to judge this tea, but I can state my opinion of it. It is smooth enough to drink without additions. There is definitely some fruity astringency, but not enough to make me to see it. I even did a second steep, because I still have some cubes of Dubliner cheese left and wanted tea!

I expect that a Darjeeling lover would have to great things to say about this tea, but this is not something that appeals to me. It was fun to give it a try! One of my favorite Darjeelings is a very earthy one from Luis Tea that my daughter bought in Budapest. The real Darjeeling enthusiast probably wouldn’t even like it because it is so different!

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drank Pomme d'Amour by Dammann Freres
5 tasting notes

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No 12 from TTB-A
I have to confess, I’m really enjoying sampling teas in this way!
These little cups hold just enough tea for a quick sample, & if it’s something I don’t care for, I don’t feel so bad dumping it out.
The one is not getting dumped! It’s tasty!
:)
And that’s enough sampling for now, I have a gig in a little while, the monthly tea party at the nursing home. Time to get ready.

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drank Easter Tea by Dammann Freres
361 tasting notes

I got the most amazing mystery box from shmiracles. Seriously, if she ever offers to send you a box, don’t miss the opportunity! There are some 20+ teas all indivually wrapped in foil pouches. It took me about 10 minutes of sifting to decide where to begin. I chose this one.

It was described as chocolaty and maraschino cherry. I totally got the cherry, a little chocolate. The fun thing about the mystery box is you get a bunch of teas that you probably wouldn’t have tried otherwise. A great chance to expand the horizons! This tea was perfect example of that. And I really liked it. Probably not a keep stocked on the shelf tea, but a tea I would happily drink if offered.

Thanks shmiracles!

Shmiracles

i seriously LOVE putting boxes together! it’s kinda weird how much.i think i just like an excuse to man-handle my tea. hah.
this was one of those teas that i got for my sister, but ended up liking definitely more than i thought i would. so i feel the same way you do about it :)

Sil

swaps are so much fun. I just wish i had better bags! i am totally jealous of yours shmiracles and tastybrews!

whatshesaid

The three of you have sent me boxes that give me that amazing reaction of pure unadulterated tea joy :)

whatshesaid

Oh and I second the bag comment! Seems like there’s nothing similar available to us Canadians! Not reasonably priced at least!

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85

Just re-steeped the leaves from try 1, and it’s still yummy. The fig has disappeared though – pure chocolate goodness this time. And no bitterness.

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 4 min, 15 sec

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85

This is my first tasting note and it’s making me strangely nervous. I am still working out what kinds of tea I like (but then – isn’t everyone?) AND how to prepare them properly/to my liking, so I don’t feel quite ‘qualified’ to be assessing a tea, but here we go!

I was in Paris a couple of weeks ago and raided Mariage Freres. I only found out about them because of Steepster, so – thank you Steepster. Then I had to wait for 3 days before I could try any of the teas, since I couldn’t boil water at the hotel. Now that was a mild form of torture. Oh, by the way – does anyone know why tea is so expensive in Parisian cafes? It tends to be around 5-6 (or more) euros per cup.

I absolutely loved MF’s De-stress tea (green & flowery/herby) and Confucius (smokey oolong! the joy!), but while I was decently happy with both Marco Polo and Pleine Lune, I wasn’t over the moon about them. [sorry, couldn’t resist.] I’d always been drawn to flavoured black tea, but with the exception of a whole lot of variations of chais and Earl Greys/citruses, I hadn’t had much luck.

Then I read someone’s comment here about how Dammann does flavoured blacks better than MF, and went ‘Sh&&&&&&&t! And I just got back from Paris!’. Well, turns out there was no cause for alarm, since Dammann ships to all of Europe for free for orders of 40 euros or more, so I notified a couple of tea-lovers-in-training and we ordered ourselves a package.

The package arrived 4 days later, i.e. 20 minutes ago. First thought – getting a package full of tea is BRILLIANT. Second thought – Charlotte au Chocolat!!

THIS BE WHERE THE ACTUAL TEA REVIEW STARTS

This tea smells amazing. Clearly chocolatey, but somehow ‘deeper’. After steeping it smelled even more chocolatey, and still completely lovely. As for the taste, that’s what’s got me here and typing. First of all – it’s delicious. I tried Tesco’s chocolate tea as a first attempt at chocolate teas, and it was actually quite tasty. But this one is nothing like it. It’s much less obvious and much more complex. There was a slightly bitter note, but not in an unpleasant way. There was chocolate – really yummy chocolate – but not in a hot chocolate kind of way. More in a hot cocoa with no milk way, but better. [I actually love no-milk hot cocoa. With tons of sugar, naturally]. And then there was – FIG. Lots of fig.

I couldn’t remember anyone mentioning anything figgy about this tea, just almonds and sunflowers. So I double-checked, and sure enough, no fig mentions. No fig in the ingredients. I even for a second thought I might have accidentally received one of Dammann’s fig teas, but then I remember the strong chocolateness of the smell [and taste] so that wasn’t possible. A tea mystery. But, seeing as I absolutely love fig, all of this just ended up making me very very happy. Especially since the fig flavour is pretty much exactly how I would have hoped a fig tea would end up tasting. A successful flavoured black tea experiment with a fig bonus! Joy.

I first tried the tea plain, then got the craving for something a bit sweeter and creamier and not-at-all bitter, so I added first sugar and then also a bit of milk. Tastes marvelous in all incarnation. Must try this tea again. But before that – I hear Everglad (green tea with pink grapefruit) calling ;)

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 4 min, 0 sec
cteresa

I like and respect Dammann very much. But flavoured blacks better than Mariage Freres, ah, that I can not endorse. Well some of their flavoured blacks will be better than some of MF flavoured blacks even for me, and not every MF tea will work for me (particularly the blends in the beautiful expensive collector´s tins). But Mariage Freres I think aims differently in flavoured black teas, not just a base with a blend of flavours, but they do vary the base tea a lot, and that definetely gives them a edge with me.

marinatvs

Well, I was just a Mariage Freres beginner back then :) I have fallen in love with a number of black MFs, including French Breakfast which is just an amazing pure black tea blend (as far as I can tell). I still can’t tell what base a flavoured black tea has – how do you learn that??

cteresa

I can´t really tell, not good enough for that, but sometimes you can feel it. Assam for example is kind of tricky, at least for me (Assam hates me and I confess it is not my favorite), it can go bitter if left longer – I think Wedding Imperial for example is a Assam base. Ceylon can taste kind of metallic, coppery, to me. Chinese blacks can do that chinese black thing as well. A and even when you can´t id, sometimes you can tell the bases are different. Dammann, one of my problems with them is so often the tea base is precisely the same just changing the flavour, and it´s kind of a “think” base.

I never had French Breakfast but it was my second favorite from their breakfast bar, I ended up getting American breakfast, which is also amazing and pure (probably!)

cteresa

sorry, just reread, and typos. I meant Dammann base tastes kind of “thin” to me, maybe a blend of chinese and indian? But if you try a bunch of their flavoured blacks in a row, you can sort of feel it.

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Another sample sipdown! Thank you Ysaurella!
The St. Louis cardinals won, 10 – 1, completing a 4 game sweep of the Brewers.
This was my celebration tea, & victory is sweet! This lovely tea combines a blend of black teas with strawberries, rhubarb, & florals. It was a very nice cup, & Tony enjoyed it too!

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I tried this one out while working on my taxes.
It was ok, but probably not something I’d purchase.
However, I’m grateful for the opportunity to give it a try!
Thank you, Ysaurella!

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drank Rose by Dammann Freres
3151 tasting notes

Here is another sipdown from Ysaurella’s lovely selection of teas. Thank you, once again! This is a really nice Rose tea.

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drank Rose by Dammann Freres
3151 tasting notes

Thank you, Ysaurella, for this wonderful tea trade! I hope the teas I sent you have finally arrived, & I also hope you enjoy them as much as I have enjoyed the ones you sent to me!

I love the photograph of this tea! It is so graceful, so beautiful, so enticing. As far as Rose teas go, it was nice. I have had stronger ones, & many weaker ones, & this was a very pleasant cup for me, especially because the flavor was a true rose flavor, not artificial tasting at all.

This was my 2nd cup for my bubble bath, & I chose to have this because the scent of roses can be so soothing, & I’ve been out of sorts today, with a headache & a sense of irritation throughout. These are classic early allergy symptoms for me, including itchy eyes. My oldest daughter, who lives a block away, is having some of the same. I can’t believe we’ve had snow flurries on & off throughout the day, & some kind of allergen in the air already. This tea offered the cup of soothing that I needed.

Tealizzy

Rose tea sounds so perfect for a bubble bath!!

Terri HarpLady

:) I agree!
There’s a wonderful essential oils bubble bath that I like from EO, it’s Rose & Chamomile. I’m out of it right now…sigh…
http://www.eoproducts.com/Products/Rose-and-Chamomile-Bubble-Bath-12-oz__636874030265.aspx

Tealizzy

Nice! I need some of that!!

Ysaurella

I’m happy you like it and it helped a little in your day.
Unfortunately I didn’t receive the teas and I am afraid the parcel may have been lost now because it never took so long to receive a parcel or envelope from the USA. I keep a little hope for tomorrow morning when I’ll open my mail box it may be there.

Ysaurella

forgot to say you can order French tea brands in a total piece of mind : I never had any artificial flavour in a French tea brand, whatever the brand is (at least the ones I know ! Kusmi, Mariage Frères, Dammann Frères, Palais des thés, Betjeman & Barton never use artificial flavours in their teas and Nina’s mentioned in a post they are never using neither.)

Ysaurella

I meant peace !!! not piece lol

Terri HarpLady

Ysaurella, I’m so sorry to hear the teas STILL haven’t come!

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drank Nosy Bey by Dammann Freres
3151 tasting notes

Sample Sipdown #2 Another wonderful tea from Ysaurella!
This has been a delightful peach tea, with just enough vanilla to compliment. Definitely on my list for when I finally order from DF.

Fjellrev

Sounds lovely!

JacquelineM

Terry,

I just spent some time on your website and I wanted to let you know how much I like your music! I love the way that you blend different styles and have come up with something truly your own for the harp! You also have a fantastic voice. Thank you for the early morning enjoyment :)

Terri HarpLady

Thanks Jacqueline!
I feel really grateful every day that I actually get to do this for a living! AND I can afford to buy some tea once in awhile too! ;)

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drank Nosy Bey by Dammann Freres
3151 tasting notes

Yay! My trade from Ysaurella arrived yesterday evening! Before I even opened the package, the aroma of so many wonderful teas was floating to me, & opening the package I was inhaling these wonderful smells!! I quickly took all the bags of teas out, spreading them on the table so they could air out a bit & not effect one another’s flavors too much.

This is the first one I knew I would sample. It is the reason Ysaurella & I swapped to begin with, because I love peaches & she offered to share some with me. So many times peach teas are a disappointment, as the flavor can seem artificial or overdone. That is NOT the case with this one. It is a delightful peach flavor, with just the right amount of vanilla, along with some floral embellishments. Ysaurella’s sample was generous, so I’ll get to enjoy this cup of dessert a few more times.
Thank you, so much, Ysaurella!!

Ysaurella

you’re very welcome ! I am happy you enjoy it as I enjoy Nosy Bey.
You’re right, when we think about peach tea we often have a bad idea -too many teas like lipton or similar teas use peach and cheap peach aromas on cheap tea bases. Nosy Bey is really a peach tea perfection to me. Mélange de Galice from The O dor is really a winner too.

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drank Jardin Bleu by Dammann Freres
1 tasting notes

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drank Noël à Paris by Dammann Freres
1999 tasting notes

I could have sworn I had logged this! I bet the other tasting note is floating around somewhere with missing accent marks on the name of the tea. This was a Christmas gift from my eldest daughter.

My bestie and I had this as a sort of dessert tea after lunch today. She hadn’t tried this one or Pleine Lune by Mariage Freres so I let her have a sniff of both and she chose this one. Pleine Lune has more bright citrus scent whereas this one has a low tone of vanilla and almond scents.

This is a lovely tea and not astringent. It needs no additions for me but is delicious just as it is. The flavor is primarily almond or marzipan. Very Christmas-y tasting tea and very nice as we had yet another gray and gloomy, wet day. All right, Christmas is over and I am ready for spring!

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This is one of the teas I received for Christmas from my eldest daughter. She must have heard us throwing around the words Lapsang Souchong back when her youngest sibling was having withdrawals from it when we briefly ran out and the Steepster community pitched in and sent her lots of samples so she could choose a favorite to order!

Well, with “Crocodile” in the name, I was a leetle bit scared! I looked it up to see if there was some special reason for the name and the only explanation I found was that Crocodile usually comes from Taiwan instead of China, is the most heavily smoked, and that explorers and adventurers found it tasty. I guess they must be the sort of people most likely to run into a crocodile?

I never considered myself an explorer or an adventurer but I guess would fit right in with them because this is great stuff! I do not find it significantly smokier than Black Dragon. The tea base is nice, the tea overall is smooth, and there is a fresh, clean taste.

The smoke is…tarry? There are a couple of teas that I will drink but truthfully they smell like ashtray to me. Not this one. This smells like you have been grilling food that is marinated with a sweet sauce, like ham glaze and brown sugar, and part of it got overdone. This is that blackened edge – a little crispy but oh so good and still sweet to the taste, with chargrilled flavor mixed with the blackened, thick sugar sauce.

Doulton would love this. I miss her! Hey, maybe Hesper June should try it!

LiberTEAS

I miss her too. I think about her often, and hope all is well with her.

Vortegne

Sounds amazing, really like something I’d love very much

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drank Christmas Tea by Dammann Freres
1999 tasting notes

This was the first tea served at tea party today, and yes, tea party was a day late this week! My middle daughter had another commitment so we postponed because she really didn’t want to miss.
We served a wonderful type of fruit cake – and I don’t usually like fruit cake – called Southern Supreme “More Nuts than Fruit” Cake. It is soooo good and is made right here in NC. We actually went to the main store two years ago. We also had Fresh Market sugar cookies, White Fudge Oreos, and a couple of other kinds of cookies.

My guest and I both LOVED this. She picked up on the cherry flavor immediately, though I didn’t. It tastes just as a Christmas tea should taste when I imagine what should be in one. Somehow the French tea companies manage to put SO MANY flavors in their teas without the end result being a muddy mess. The different notes can all be teased out, but the black tea base is never covered up. It doesn’t end up tasting like a fruit tisane. Nice!

This is one of the teas given to me by oldest daughter at Thanksgiving! :)

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Finished this today. It was on my list of teas that are getting some age on them and need to be cleared out. I didn’t look at what was in it, but we really thought we were having a tea with anise when we were drinking it at tea party today. I like anise so that wasn’t a problem, but I think we were supposed to be getting cherry from the flavor.

Nice tea, better than most Christmas blends I have tried which make me wrinkle my nose at their orange/clove/cinnamon sameness, with the orange usually being bitter to me. Beautifully packaged, I will be keeping the tins and box and repurposing them.

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My daughter came to join us for Thanksgiving dinner today and brought a gift with her. She said this was part of my Christmas present but that I needed to open it now because it was something for DURING the holidays.

It was the adorable Dammann Freres coffret with two tins of Christmas tea! I made the white tea after lunch because I wanted to share it with her and she really does not like black tea….at all!

This is very fragrant and right away evoked memories of Noél a Londres by the same company, just with a white base. SQUEEE! After the tea is gone, I will have to repurpose this beautiful box and the tins!

http://www.flickr.com/photos/24998856@N06/8209475645/
http://www.flickr.com/photos/24998856@N06/8209475451/in/photostream/

Miss Starfish

How sweet of her and such gorgeous packaging!!

K S

awesome

Sil

that’s awesome!

Hesper June

Beautiful tins and box! what a lovely gift:)

Nicole

Those tins are lovely!

JacquelineM

GORGEOUS! & so thoughtful :) That was amazingly sweet to give it to you early so that you can enjoy it throughout the holiday season.

ashmanra

She is such a doll to feed my tea habit the way she does!

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I made an iced tea out of this today and it’s not nearly as good as it is hot. Well I suppose if you wanted to lose the floral notes of it, then this would work. It now becomes very fruity and I can taste more of the almond-ness of the macaron. And now I also want macarons. A couple weeks ago I figured out there’s a bakery with them right in the shopping center I live behind so…

fleurdelily

have one for me :)

momo

Will do! They have all sorts of neat flavors, I’ll probably end up with one for all of Steepster, haha.

Josie Jade

this sounds like a really unique tea, yum!

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Thank you so much to QueenOfTarts for this tea!

I am starting to think maybe two months from now I need to order the teas I want from Dammann Frerés because I am in love with this tea, just based on the dry leaf smell alone. It is very reminiscent of a macaron.

The violet is definitely not as strong as the black currant. I get floral notes upon first sip but then it becomes all berry. I thought maybe there’d be a weird almond taste given the macaron flavor, but it’s more of an added sweetness to the tea.

As it cools the violet comes out a bit more, I think this would even be good as an iced tea. Definitely a more spring/summery flavor to this tea, but that won’t stop me from enjoying this in the coming months. So good!

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After a half-day of drudge at my parents’ farm (neither of them is up to heavy housework or miscellaneous personal care sundries) and an afternoon of slamming out an overdue writing assignment, and another half-day of my own housework still staring at me (does that make three halves to the day?) I needed a moment for something wonderful and elegant. This was the first tea that came to mind.

The candy-sweet almond flavor sticks to your tongue several swallows after the tea actually leaves your mouth. Gives you time to close your eyes, forget you’re in a rumply t-shirt stained with household fallout and 99-cent flip flops, and pretend you’re well-dressed, beautifully groomed, and at least temporarily brilliant.

ashmanra

I agree with you 100%. This tea makes me feel elegant.

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