Mariage Frères

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Recent Tasting Notes

72

This is the first tea I’m trying from Scheherazade! Her swap package arrived this morning while I was at work; definitely earlier than I expected it to. I really hope mine makes it to her soon!

I guarantee I would have never picked this for myself, and that’s why I love that my most recent swaps have all been “pick out some random teas for me” kind of deals. I’ve tried a lot of tea that I would have otherwise ignored. Case and point, when I pulled everything out this was the one that jumped out the most to me that I was all “I have to try this tonight” about.

It’s interesting; the green base has a lot of marine notes to it and is pleasantly mild despite that. And I don’t love green tea, but paired with lemon it’s actually quite nice. This lemon in particular is kind of semi-sweet and reminds me a lot of lemon rind and pith what with the gentle, pleasant bitterness. I didn’t taste the ‘pepper’ element of the tea until halfway through the mug when it had cooled down a fair bit. I’m not 100% sure I liked it, but I certainly found it really interesting. Totally pulls together to create a lemon pepper flavour. It seems like it should be obvious that’s what it would taste like, though.

Not living with my family anymore it’s weird not knowing if things I remember about them are still true, but before I had moved out a few years ago my brother was obsessed with lemon pepper; he’d garnish just about anything with it. If that’s still true today I bet this is one tea I could very easily talk him into trying…

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100
drank Black Orchid by Mariage Frères
595 tasting notes

This tea has been on my wish list for YEARS! So a BIG, HUGE, GIGANTIC thank you to TeaBrat for giving me a sample!!

The brewed tea aroma is equal parts vanilla and caramel. Mmmm, this smells like a dream! A decadent, delicious, dessert dream! The flavor is a lot like the aroma but a tad bitter. I added some skim milk and Truvia and now it’s perfect! It’s heavily vanilla and heavily caramel and I am in love! Mmm, yes! This can replace the hole in my heart left by Butiki Teas’ Caramel Vanilla Assam being no longer available since they closed shop.

I’m always on the lookout for a great vanilla tea and caramel is an added bonus. Now I wish I had more! A lot more! But alas, an order will have to wait until I’ve sipped down my overflowing cupboard. I still have two Mariage Frères teas in there: Marco Polo, which I’ve only had probably twice, and Eros, which I have never tried. :P I’m pretty silly, aren’t I? Oh well. I LOVE THIS TEA! Thank you, TeaBrat!

Preparation
Boiling 2 min, 30 sec 2 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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When my brother announced he was going to Paris, I immediately put in vague request for tea! He came home with four pouches full of Marriage Freres teas for my sister and I to split! I’m so jealous that he got to go into an MF store and grateful that he brought some home to me! American Breakfast was one that he chose. When he requested something almond/chocolatey, this was what was recommended. I do get a little chocolate malt, but no almond. Today I steeped this for three minutes at 205, my go to for blacks, but it tastes a little weak at the moment. I’ll have to try adjusting things. When I add a little soy creamer, it makes it much richer, but I’d like to find a good setting so it tastes great on it’s own. I do get a little of that maltiness that I associate with breakfast teas and it reminds me like a lighter version of Wedding Imperial. I’d like to try it cold steeped. So far, I prefer MF’s French Breakfast.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 0 sec
TeaBrat

French breakfast is awesome. Paris Breakfast, not so much. Still haven’t tried the American :)

Dustin

I didn’t know there was a Paris Breakfast! Guess I’m not missing much!

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95
drank Thé de Lune by Mariage Frères
12 tasting notes

I have stopped spending money with other companies. It’s been 4 years since I left Europe, and with all my endless search to find a good local tea company, I just gave up. I ordered my teas now from dammann freres and mariage freres, and I am happy again. This tea is just delicious!

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90
drank Rouge d'Automne by Mariage Frères
2182 tasting notes

This was a super tasty tea. I overleafed a bit based on my sample size (from the amazing MissB of course), and tried to compensate on brewing, and it mostly worked. There is a hint of bitterness, but not enough to dampen my enjoyment of this tea.

I have my ups and downs with chestnut teas, but this one is definitely an up. Sweet candied chestnuts without a hint of smoke or roasting, which I am loving. The vanilla really works here too; it’s like Fleurilège (DF) but with chestnuts instead of hazelnuts. I would absolutely buy more of this tea if the opportunity ever arose. Really really tasty.

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 2 min, 0 sec 3 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML
Ysaurella

so agree ! I love this one so much :)

Lariel of Lórien

Red Autumn? Anyway, it sounds good.

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93
drank Aida by Mariage Frères
12 tasting notes

Very nice. Smokey earl grey notes but very smooth and no bitterness!
Love this tea

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79
drank Yuzu Temple by Mariage Frères
30 tasting notes

A friend of mine gave me several bags of this tea and i am on my last bag. Now that I am on my last bag I can agree that the brew can vary quite a bit depending on the temperature and steep time.

My favorite brew so far has been todays. I let the water cool down a little bit before I steeped and the brew came out rather nice. Green base, nice hit of citrus and the faintest amount of spice (peppery) for a nice kick.

Preparation
3 min, 30 sec

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84
drank Phenix MF by Mariage Frères
2182 tasting notes

Another tea with just enough for a cup from MissB. Thansk for sending it along! I like to take advantage of getting small samples of MF teas when I can since their bases can be so hit or miss for me. This one was tasty, but kind of duplicates other teas in my cupboard.

This is definitely hazelnut, vanilla, and caramel in the flavor. They are all nicely complementary, and it is overall tasty. However, the base on this has a sneaking bitter note that reminds you to brew this one carefully. I prefer DF’s Fleurilege, which this is very close to in flavor. Still, happy to try it!

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 3 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML

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84

Another hit from Mariage Freres!

I had this one on my mid-morning break. Pleasant flavor, not too strong, not bitter or astringent. I couldn’t taste individual flavors, but it smelled sort of buttery, creamy. Really nice!

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 4 min, 45 sec 2 tsp 10 OZ / 295 ML

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85

A friend shared this with me today. It had been given to her by someone else so I’m really not sure how old it was.
Whatever the case, I had seen reviews before and thought it may be too permfumey. But alas! it was lovely. A tad bit on the heavy side but quite manageable.
So very smooth n silky. The liquid seemed to float down my throat (and yes I know that makes no sense. and yes the image in my head is quite magical/disneyish. Singing birds and all)
Lots of layered vanilla notes, and something floral I couldn’t place. At times I tasted citrus notes but they were so fleeting that I really wasn’t sure if it was my imagination.
An absolute perfect tea for afternoon chatting.

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95

This tea is still the bomb! Love it. So smooth, so creamy and buttery smelling. I wish I could smell it even better. The sense of smell is fugitive. That is, it comes and it goes, and it’s never really strong. But I get hints of this, and it is delicious. I’m just about falling asleep in my chair, so I wont do a second steep tonight. I wonder if I could pop the tea sleeve into the fridge and re-steep in the morning? Really, this tea is too good to not use up every bit of it.

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95

This is one of the BEST TEAS ever!!! Many thank to beelicious for the sample!

My sense of smell is practically non existent in the morning, and pretty weak in the evening, but it’s better in the afternoon. Still not great (I mean, I know cucumbers have a scent, but I can’t smell them even in the afternoon) but I can get strong scents. I wanted to try a new tea this afternoon, and I went through the lovely samples I have in the tea drawer. I decided on this one.

Boy, am I glad I did! When I lifted the cup to sip I smelled something! Not precisely sure what, but maybe chocolate? CarameL? I sipped and this tea was luscious. Smooth, silky, almost sweet. Rich and mellow. A really great cup!

Flavors: Caramel, Chocolate, Creamy

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 3 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 10 OZ / 295 ML

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79
drank Casablanca by Mariage Frères
55 tasting notes

My first Mariage Frères! Jeez, this tastes like quality! The ingredients don’t attract me particularly but it is everything it promises to be. Good quality leaves, very well balanced. Can’t wait to be able to try a Mariage Frères with ingredients that attracts me more.

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drank Sakura 2011 by Mariage Frères
758 tasting notes

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65
drank Rouge Opera by Mariage Frères
348 tasting notes

I regret having bought this. It´s in no way awful and I will finish it, but having made it hot brewed and iced, in both occasions my overwhelming feeling is that it tastes kind of like strawberry bubble gum. The vanilla and red berries, together, their particular relationship just feels bubble gum-ish. And sadly it is not the flavour I am looking for in a tea. I wish I had restocked on Rouge Sahara or Nil Rouge instead.

Flavors: Raspberry, Strawberry, Vanilla

Preparation
Iced 8 min or more

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100

This morning I start a new life phase and it seems only right that I go along with this new friend of a tea. I was in Paris for ten days in May, a long-awaited birthday trip, and on the day of we celebrated with brunch at the Mariages Freres in le Marais. Brunch came with a full-sized pot of tea for each person, which should be the standard, in my opinion. I chose French Breakfast on a whim although I virtually never drink breakfast blends (gourmand all the way for me), and when I poured the first cup from the round silver teapot I didn’t regret it.

The taste is rich and full, a welcome into the morning. I’ve always associated breakfast blends with harshness, a wake-up full of tannins to brace you for the day ahead – but this is indeed breakfast in France, a gentle cup that feels like the last warm moment wrapped in your bedcovers before you rise for a day you’ve been looking forward to. Allow me my sentiment; I’m only freshly back in Los Angeles and looking to a day of drudgery applying to temp agencies and likely-looking jobs. The skies outside are a dreadful pessimistic grey but at least for the moment I have my French Breakfast.

Sil

wooohoooo!!! love this one too :)

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54
drank Yuzu Temple by Mariage Frères
348 tasting notes

I made this again, this time a cold steep, and this is sadly still not a tea for me.

The cold steep is still quite bitter, as a steepsterite mentioned to me, there is a lot of pith in here somehow. And very strangely maybe there is a touch of cinnamon here? a hint of a spice, lurking in the cold infusion? I sweetened this a lot, iced tea seems to call for it, and it does improve the tea a bit, but still a frustrating tea for me.

Ysaurella

It wasn’t a tea for me neither Teresa.

cteresa

It is an interesting idea though. Glad I only got 50 grams! (thanks to you).

I got to tell you about Route du Temps though, but I must make it again, for a proper taste note and it´s hot (hot is overrated) and I am being wary of caffeine so it might take me a while longer to do a proper taste note of it.

Ysaurella

I’m looking forward to get your opinion about Route du Temps Teresa.

cteresa

I finally wrote a note! It is a very unusual tea IMO, but one I unexpectedly liked very much.

I had fun on that airport shop – it was small, but they did not mind I opened every sample tea. I thought of you, they had The de Paques en vrac, and I also got (for myself) Rouge Opera en vrac which they did not have in the Marais shop except in tins. Though that was a dud, it turned out.

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54
drank Yuzu Temple by Mariage Frères
348 tasting notes

This is a weird tea to judge. I have no experience with real yuzu so just judging the tea on its own. Very scented sour japanese citrus, sounded like a great idea. (I love sour candy….). And it smelled fantastic when I ordered some, but now I have it and brewed it 3 times I still do not quite know what to make of it. It does smell fantastic, like sour citrus chewing gum.

It´s s finicky to brew, I made it Ok (but a bit too cold for my taste) the first time, I scalded it to bitterness the second, this time there is a definite bitterness which I do not know if it´s from the yuzu or the tea, but it´s a bit more intense than the first time. But it´s still not very intense. It does smell, the liquor, fantastic (as I keep repeating), but the taste it´s a bit like that chewing gum after having already been chewed for a while – there is some taste and texture, but not a lot.

Flavors: Citrus

OMGsrsly

I really liked this one, but found there could be quite a lot of pith flavour. And yes, it was such a pain to brew right.

cteresa

It is difficult yes – I am going to try to cold steep it next, hoping it works. I might be unfair and mentally comparing this to Iskandar which is also green and which I bought at the same time!

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76
drank Paris Breakfast by Mariage Frères
6403 tasting notes

Figured i should try this one today so i can keep working on getting through all the teas in my cupboard at least once. I think i’m down to only about 34 teas that haven’t been tasted yet, so overall, i’m doing better than i was. Dry, this smells amazing. creamsicle, but more lemon creamy than orange creamsicle…i say that only because imo there is only one creamsicle and that’s orange lol. brewed up, the smell is a little more subdued but still has that creamy smell to it. The brewed cup? It’s not exactly my favourite, but i think there’s room to play with this. IE. with a little sweetness added, i think it would smooth out the edges of this that are a little jarring for me. I don’t really get “brioche” from this, which is how it’s described by MF., but it’s lovely nonetheless.

TheKesser

I need to do that. I have a few that I haven’t touched yet and I keep putting it off.

Ost

If it tastes more like lemon then I’m interested. Though seems like people taste both, maybe you’re just one of those people, sil.

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84
drank Poire by Mariage Frères
6403 tasting notes

I blame other people for the fact that i’m now obsessed with finding good pear teas. Sadly, it’s one of those flavours that is really hard to find, and is almost always blended with other teas. this particular tea is not only JUST pear…but it’s good. and not a green tea. haha I feel like the perfect pear tea IS likely a green tea but a black pear tea is better for me. Easier for me to drink and less hard to ruin…especially when created by a company like MF. not only does this smell like pear, but the after taste of pear lingers and makes me happy. Because it’s a black base though, it’s not as sweet as it feels like a pear tea should be…but I could certainly try adding a little sweetner in the future. overall a win!

cteresa

You don´t know if you know it, but Lupicia has a green tea with pear, pear and honey. It smelled interesting!

Sil

I’ve been trying to get my hands on that one for about a year now. every time i try to place an order with lupicia online, it’s sold out. So i’ll keep trying haha

cteresa

ah good luck! you know being sold out MIGHT be a good sign.

Sil

haha yes…but harder to get it lol

Sil

still wish that i’d realised there was a lupicia store in paris. Kicking myself over that one

cteresa

They did have it in stock! But it´s life – I was really planning to make it to Theodor but there was a problem in the metro line at the only convenient opportunity window, I was actually inside the carriage had to get out of the metro and find another plan to be able to keep to my schedule. Some other time.

I think the shop was not too big, there were some lupicia teas I had tried before that they did not carry – though difficult to compare because the tea names were translated into french (LOL I was look for Jardin Sauvage and Chaud les Marrons, wonder if they would have translated that into english!)

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88
drank Black Orchid by Mariage Frères
6403 tasting notes

MINE! finally i have some to try and it was worth it :) I REALLY enjoyed this take on vanilla and malty and delicious and YAY! mine. :)

Final Count: 126

Sami Kelsh

OMG how did I not know there was a Black Orchid tea? It’s only the name of one of the weirdest Doctor Who stories to come out of the 80s. I may well need to get some just based on that…

Sil

it’s a different sort of vanilla imo. still a vanilla tea but not like the other 10000 of vanilla blacks that i’ve had

Sami Kelsh

It sounds groovy. Just give me ALL THE VANILLA THINGS IN EVERY POSSIBLE VARIATION THEREUPON :p

Kittenna

Sounds delicious. Is this one you picked up when you were in Europe?

Ost

Mmmm! Sounds so good

Sil

aye – pretty much everything these days is from my adventures. I wrapped up miss B’s teas the other day

Terri HarpLady

yay for your euro-adventure :)

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88
drank Iskandar by Mariage Frères
348 tasting notes

I cold steeped this, and it works very well also (as it should from something they sell as a French Summer Tea) – smooth, intense and floral. But too floral for me to love it – the menthol is more noticeable in the hot version and it really does balance it the floral. On this iced tea, it´s violets and I think roses (why is it roses always feel stronger on cold steeped teas?) coming through and it is too much, like drinking perfume almost. Not my cup of (iced) tea, will save it for hot brewing.

Preparation
Iced 8 min or more

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88
drank Iskandar by Mariage Frères
348 tasting notes

This was another 50 grams of Mariage Freres teas from a recent splurge, and the only one of the small 50 gram packages which really is a a hit! The concept of it is fantastically alluring (to me), it has been on my wishlist for ages: green tea with violet and menthol and named after Alexander the Great. I had sniffed at it before and not been sure I wanted 100 grams of it, but this time I did risk it, and I am glad I did.

I brewed it not too hot (and I must try it as a cold steeped tea, they do sell it as a summer tea), and decided to when smelling it to sweeten it, and I am glad I did. I don´t usually sweeten tea, but it really brings out the violets, like violet candy (or maybe it is just my brain thinking if I am ingesting something which smells of violets it must be sweetened). And I do love it, floral (mainly violet, maybe some unidentifiable others), with menthol very discreet, at the end of it, and in the tongue, if that makes any sense. And I might very well be imagining this but it also seems fruit-y, red berry-ish, to me.

Really lovely tea

Flavors: Menthol, Violet

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C 3 min, 45 sec
OMGsrsly

That sounds really interesting. Violets and mint are not a combination I would have thought of!

cteresa

It´s actually menthol, like a throat pastille – just a hint, right at the back of the taste so to speak, but indeed very interesting!

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65
drank Rouge Ruschka by Mariage Frères
348 tasting notes

Thanks to Ysaurella´s guidance I was able to buy this, and a few other MF teas of which I was very unsure, in just 50 grams. And in the two cases I have already tried the tea, I am glad I only got 50 grams.

This is a very pretty rooibos, huge rose petals. The description sounds fantastic. But brewed up, it tastes like an earl grey rooibos – maybe with a bit of orange in the background, but the bergamot is overpowering, I do not get any of the fruits or floral notes. I already got another earl grey rooibos around, and since I am not an earl grey lover, I am also not a big fan of earl grey rooibos.

I think I would like this better as an afternoon non-caffeine tea – earl grey usually feels to me like an afternoon tea, not an evening tea. And I want to try it maybe cold steeped or or at least with water not as hot, I used almost boiling water and I am picky about bergamot and water too hot. But so far, nice enough but not a tea for me to love.

Flavors: Bergamot, Orange

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 30 sec
Ysaurella

Lucky you get only 50 grams of this one Teresa :)

cteresa

Thanks to you! That was a very nice shop, and it does not show up on google at all. Noted down for next time!

This will get drunk,and it is not bad and I still got to try cold steeping which sometimes totally changes the personality of a tea, particularly rooibos (Rouge Sahara, Lupicia´s Jardin Sauvage). But this and Yuzu Temple are not hits. Iskandar OTOH was weirdly fantastic – I noticed you did not like it much, but maybe I was luckier with some parameter or something, but a very interesting take on the violet tea idea.

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