Fortnum & Mason

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Recent Tasting Notes

It’s grey outside and I’m wearing a knitted hat from a friend, and I have jeans on and a sweater….and somehow it’s supposed to get back up to 90 soon, but I’m really liking the cooler weather. Cooler weather is tea weather for me, so bring it on! :)
Dipping into my magical bag of tea swap wonders from Plunkybug, I decided to have this one, wanting something spicier and flavoured (Plunkybug, your teas have ignited a yearning for flavoured teas, and it’s so fun, because I thought I had totally fallen out of that! yay!)….
This is really, really lovely. A lot of the Christmas teas that I’ve tried have all been pretty similar, but I’ve loved them all, and this is no different…
Everything plays so well together in my mug without being too overpoweringly orange peel, or cinnamon stick…. just a really great cup. :D
Finished up my dishes and have a little bit of time to spare, so I’m thinking I’ll bring this mug over to the couch with me and play a bit of Final Fantasy 6 on my vita (is there anything better than Final Fantasy on a handheld??).

Plunkybug

I got this one from OMGsrsly. It was nice, but I felt I should share, it too.

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78

this one comes to me from Raritea Not my usual cup of tea, but i love trying out new things! :) this is a really smooth, light and refreshing tea. It leaves a weird feeling in my mouth after…almost drying. for sure some spinach notes to this…and there’s a sweet quality about it as well – i don’t get canteloupe like raritea did, but i can see how, in combination with the aroma, i could have that sense. over all an interesting tea to try! thanks Raritea!

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drank Breakfast Blend by Fortnum & Mason
643 tasting notes

After eyeing F&M teas online, I finally came across some at William Somoma and picked up a tin! I decided to cold steep this overnight and it turned out quite light. I get a little malt to it, but not nearly as much as I’d expect with a breakfast blend. Adding a little cream to it is nice. It is strange, but now that I read apple is one of the flavors, I can definitely pick it out on the after taste! So far this tea is nice, but not amazing.

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92

Dry leaf has a strong floral/vegetal aroma.

Brewed tea has a strong vegetal aroma.

Flavour is mostly vegetal with a clean sugary fruity (cantaloupe) finish). Buttery notes in aftertaste. Thick mouthfeel with a very satisfying savoury note. As the tea cools, I am detecting a mild smoky note in the back of the throat- somewhat like charred asparagus.

Flavors: Cantaloupe, Fruity, Spinach

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 2 min, 0 sec 3 tsp 13 OZ / 370 ML

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84

Paid HK$130 (roughly GBP11, USD17) for 125g.
It is a good, tasty Earl Grey tea.
A subtle but noticeable bergamot flavor from natural oil, and a quiet but strong black tea base.
However, as it is rather expensive, I say bring this tea out when you have company.

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 15 sec 3 g 8 OZ / 240 ML

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73
drank Keemun by Fortnum & Mason
1281 tasting notes

Some quick notes on this one as I’m tired. I’ve had children running through my house all day, they are the neighbours kids and I said they could see the kitten if they want to. Big mistake, the parents seem to not even care where their own children are! So I was stuck with them for a long time. Just not used to children, I’m completely zapped.

I’ve had this tea for a while and thought I had already reviewed it but apparently I haven’t, so I’m going to do that quickly now. I bought my husband a ceramic steeping mug and I give him loose leaf tea to take to work every day, he can take the rest of this with him. Must be 1oz here so should do him for a little while…well a few days at least.

Raw appearance is rather finely chopped but not too fine and colour is dark brown. Scent is a little sweet and wooden.

1 teaspoon of leaf into my ceramic steeping mug for 3 minutes (So I know what it would taste like when my husband tries it at work).

(Excuse me while I scoff some Custard Cream biscuits)

Flavour is thick and rich with smoke, wood and dry bark tones with a sour after taste. Some almost ‘floral’ and sweet notes in there to give it a classic Keemun feel. Some astringency there and I feel that perhaps it was either too long a steep or 1 level teaspoon was too much. Either way it’s just not as ‘clean’ tasting as I was hoping. Though it would do for an every day Keemun, perhaps good in the morning.

I think my husband will like this so he can take the rest with him.

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drank Fortmason by Fortnum & Mason
1929 tasting notes

This is really, really floral. Jasmine, maybe? I was expecting a plain tea, as the name really doesn’t give anything away.

It’s not bad, but I don’t think I’d want more. The flowers almost give it a bitter tinge, although I only steeped 3 minutes at 195F.

Thanks for the sample, MissB, but this is one I don’t care for! :(

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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85

So good! The kind of tea that I would drink anytime. Very simple. I like the orange flavour, even when hot! I really don’t understand, I usually dislike the fruit flavours in hot plain teas but here, it’s very present but good nonetheless.

By the way, I bought this at London Heathrow. I was so excited when I first saw their tea room and then the tea shop! I didn’t know Fortnum and Mason had their own stores but it was so beautiful and fancy (whilst the prices were very much comparable to popular tea stores in Montreal). I even took pictures of the store, my boyfriend thought I was a bit weird haha.

Flavors: Orange

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100
drank Royal Blend by Fortnum & Mason
1 tasting notes

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55

This tea has an odd “dusty” flavor~ like powdered peach rather than peach juice or pieces of peach. It reminds me of that added flavor when eating dried fruit. For me, this extra flavor unbalances this tea. It is a decent tea overall, but I keep thinking I’m drinking dried fruit with black tea.

Preparation
185 °F / 85 °C 3 min, 15 sec

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90

Has the aroma of Laphroiag or Talisker whisky with the smell of phenols, creosote and tar coming strongly through. If you like peaty whiskies you’ll love this taste but the aroma is even more incredible. If it tasted like it smelt it would probably be undrinakable but the taste though peaty has no bad aftertastes and is quite rich in texture. I thought I would try a cup and ended up having another straight after.

Flavors: Campfire, Earth, Medicinal, Pine, Smoke, Tobacco, Whiskey

Preparation
Boiling 2 min, 0 sec

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70

Excellent Earl Grey. Well-balanced, and crisp.

Preparation
185 °F / 85 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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70

Love the smokiness; however it is dominating the entire range of flavors / aromas. I can still taste the other flavors but they are being overpowered by the smoke. I really like this tea, however, I can understand if people tire of this tea quickly.

A good alternative in my opinion is Lupicia’s Earl Grey Grand Classic which has the smoky flavor along with some fruit flavor too. I wish I had some on hand so I could do a side by side comparison.

Preparation
185 °F / 85 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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55

An okay tea; reminds me of an Earl Grey but less floral. A little too bitter in my opinion, but for those that want more tea and less additional flavoring this might be a good alternative to the typical Earl Grey

Preparation
185 °F / 85 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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65
drank Fortmason by Fortnum & Mason
60 tasting notes

This has a nice floral aroma, and a good blend of black tea. I oversteeped it and it can get a little too bitter.

Preparation
185 °F / 85 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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40
drank Queen Anne by Fortnum & Mason
60 tasting notes

Fortnum & Mason has several breakfast blends; out of all their “Famous” tea line, I’d say this is my least favorite. It is the most harsh (I tend to like smooth or crisp teas) of their teas. It has a bit of malt, and a good amount of bitter, and other dark flavors.

I think all of their teas are of excellent quality; just not to my personal taste. I would encourage people to try their teas, especially if you like breakfast type blends. If not, try their Grey teas (Earl Grey, Countess Grey, etc)

Preparation
185 °F / 85 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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50
drank Jubilee by Fortnum & Mason
60 tasting notes

This is a decent tea~

Although nothing really bad about it, nothing really stands out either.

Preparation
185 °F / 85 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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45
drank Royal Blend by Fortnum & Mason
60 tasting notes

This is an okay blend; not particularly great – a bit bland, bitter, and some astringency.

Preparation
185 °F / 85 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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50
drank Afternoon by Fortnum & Mason
60 tasting notes

This is a clean, light tea, with some maltiness. Nice Balanced natural flavors~ I tend to like flavored Black Teas but I think this is an excellent straight, afternoon tea.

Preparation
185 °F / 85 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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50

This has a crisper, cleaner taste than other Breakfast blends I’ve had; less malty.

Preparation
185 °F / 85 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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55

Not as malty and bold as the Fortnum & Mason Irish Breakfast blend but still has that smooth aftertaste. This would be great with lighter tasting foods~

Preparation
185 °F / 85 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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60

Malty, Bold, and a smooth finish. I think this is an excellent tea. I would recommend this for those that like Breakfast Teas.

Preparation
185 °F / 85 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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drank Queen Anne by Fortnum & Mason
1929 tasting notes

Some tea bags from MissB! :) Thank you.

I brewed this as usual, and am (OMG) having it plain. I can’t even.

It’s pretty good. A little astringent though. I definitely wouldn’t steep this at boiling.

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 2 min, 45 sec 16 OZ / 473 ML

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