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Recent Tasting Notes
Look at the MF trend in my life lately! I’m actually really glad, because I actually got these teas in October of 2013, and figure I need to actually get to them instead of just hording them because they’re “too nice”. But I was craving this tea ever since I got home last night, and chose to have it with breakfast this morning. As I sipped at it, I found it passingly reminiscent of glitter and gold, but only vaguely. Perhaps it’s because both have a touch of spice to them, although this one also has the delicious marzipan component, whereas glitter and gold is more similar to a pumpkin tea (in my opinion anyway—I know it’s an odd comparison). I also like that I could really get a hefty base here, and I don’t know how to describe it other than to say that it’s a base that MF is proud of, because there aren’t any attempts to obliterate it with a ton of flavour, although this tea is very flavourful indeed. and not in the “delicate but nice” way—there really is a lot of flavour here.
I’m doing a bit of backlogging this morning, although I actually didn’t drink much tea at all this weekend, because the hotel we stayed at didn’t even provide us with a kettle! and there’s no way I was going to have sloppily brewed tea, so this note is actually for the tea I had Friday morning.
And let me just reiterate that the French really know how to make a mean cup of tea. Mean, I tell you. The trick with this tea is to avoid overleafing at all; just a tsp for 8 oz (and not my usual tsp and a half) yields the perfect combination of spice, warmth, and chai. I took it with milk and sugar, and this had the effect of toning down the ginger just enough to make it a perfectly balanced cup, whereas before, I found the ginger to be a touch too prominent, with the clove not far behind. So yes. Four minutes, bit of milk and sugar, and only one level tsp. Perfection.
two entries for this tea. but this one has more notes so it wins.
it’s rainy here.
i stayed up until 5am dancing.
i made a dress from gold lamé.
it started to fall apart slowly but it held up for the whole evening. yay win!
the weather was great and made the whole evening even better.
but waking up this morning?
it was harrrrd.
so… French Breakfast!
like really delicious.
i love the malty ones.
thanks a ton for the sample Sil.
this is my 700th tea :)
but it won’t look like that because i’m MANY many logs behind. and i’ll probably re-enter most of them when i get around to writing the review. but yup. 700 yay tea yay.
Caffeine-Free/Decaf Traveling Tea Box
This is my first time trying a Mariage Freres tea though I think I have a few samples that I’ve received in swaps. This has a nice strawberry flavor but I wouldn’t consider it anything special. I added sweetener. Will be letting this tea go on its journey.
I’m not usually a big breakfast tea fan, in fact I’m totally baffled by it and don’t understand what makes a tea breakfast type, BUT despite all that I’m enjoying this cup. I got a small bag of it in bulk while tea shopping in California, figuring I’d give it a try since I wasn’t likely to be able to find sample sizes again. This is a really solid heavy tea, relying on heavier base notes. I get a deep smooth malty flavor which isn’t bitter at all! I’ll be interested to see if it grows on me.
Backlog from yesterday evening:
I got this from the Balzac’s Cafe at the Reference Library and just stared off into space for a bit while drinking it. It was a nice mental holiday.
This is a very smooth blend, with no one spice taking predominance over the others. I could taste the cloves, pepper, and ginger, and the cinnamon seemed like a little platform underneath it. The cloves were strongest in the scent and at the beginning of the sip, with the pepper being strongest in the aftertaste. Overall, a nice, relaxing cup.
So I woke up yesterday at 10 am and started writing a paper. I finally finished that paper today at 3. For those counting, that is about 29 hours solid of starting at my computer and writing about genocide. I finished with an hour to spare, which I planned on using to have a cup of tea. only my printer decide to be difficult and so I had to spend time fixing that which meant no tea for me.
Then I took my paper to class and as I was walking out, a classmate stopped me to talk which made me realize I might have done the paper incorrectly. A paper worth 50% of my grade so that is not good. However, there is nothing I can do now so I am not going to stress.
And if that was not bad enough, I ended up stepping a huge puddle with my converse on so I had to walk the 1/2 hr home with a soaking wet foot.
Oh and steepster is glitching again. Luckily though, nothing seemed to go wrong with this tea, courtesy of the wonderful Sil. It has the tiny hint of spice, a touch of fruitiness, but the most prominent flavor is the base which I am actually really enjoying today. It is a more mellow cup that is good for any mood as opposed to a more bold and powerful flavor. This is not one I would have chosen myself but it is one I would definitely have again so thank you Sil for sending me such tasty treats :)
Here is the last one from the Héritage Gourmand collection. This is a nice apple tea with some slightly savory/buttery notes. At first I could have sworn that there was cinnamon in this because it smelled very sweet. Anyhow, this is really very good, and I am really happy with the Héritage Gourmand collection as a whole.
I think this is still definitely my favorite from the Héritage Gourmand collection. I like that the flavor here is very mild. The texture is smooth and silky, and the toasted rice really makes it smell like an authentic baked good. I used to live right near St. Honoré in Portland (this was during a veganism hiatus) and my favorite things to get were the Cannelés.
I had this one before bed last night, but was too sleepy to log it. If you’re wondering why I haven’t been reading/liking your posts, it’s because I’m in the middle of doing our wine club. This involves emailing each of our wine club members about the spring release, updating new information, customizing orders, charging credit cards, and creating shipping templates…None of which is automized, but at least we don’t do fulfillment on-site.
Anyway, about the tea. This one was definitely different than the financier. In the financier, the prominent flavors were the brown butter and the almond. This one tasted like a lighter, sweet buttery cake. I have to admit, I really like these tea flavors a lot.
Oh, one other thing…The base green tea on these reminds me of a formosa oolong. That is what the leaves look similar to after steeping (not that they are rolled the same way), and it has the same kind of almost fruity sweetness that something like a milk oolong has. This I’m not too fond of. I wish they had used a more nutty green as the base.
Hm. I like this one too. This one is scented more heavily than it is flavored, which is good because this could easily be too much. It smells like candied fruit, almonds and cinnamon. And even though it smells super-sweet you it doesn’t taste very sweet at all. There is some lingering almond paste in the finish. Yum!
This afternoon, I needed a tea that wouldn’t require much work and that would cheer me up a little.
This is a sample from Dexter3657 and she wrote «…seems like something you would like.»
We shall see…
First, the dry leaf smells divine and like most french blends, it’s so pretty to look at. Only knowing it’s a fruity black, I tried to identify the flavours from the scent. It’s very strawberry like, with something tropical, I would say papaya or passion fruit. Turns out none of those are in this blend, lol! It’s a peach and apricot tea and it does taste like it once brewed.
It’s so fruity, but in a clean and natural kind of way. The aroma of this infusion is like walking through a peach field, surrounded by beautiful blooming peach trees… that’s what I imagine peach blossoms must smell like.
It’s a lot more peachy than apricot-y. There’s suppose to be fig somewhere but I can,t detect it at all. The base is also very decent.
It’s so mellow, I let it infused 6 minutes and no trace of astringency or bitterness whatsoever.
Dexter was right, it was something I really liked, and I’m using what’s left for a cold brew,
Thanks Dex :-)
Ah. This tea. I’m not sure yet if I really like it or if I love it. I haven’t had a crêpe in years, but this does have a crêpe or cake-like smell. This is like an earl grey creme where the bergamot and the especially the vanilla are pretty mellow. I think there may be a touch of berry flavor in this as well. This is a pretty interesting tea.
Mariage Frères and I have not had the best of relationships, so I’m not really sure what compelled me to pick up a 100g tin of this one at a café in Pittsburgh. Perhaps the lure of almond and rose, and perhaps because I remembered Ysaurella’s notes on this one. Although they don’t always agree, our tastes tend to be fairly similar in many cases, so if she liked this one, I wanted to try it.
I have to say that I didn’t realize that this was spiced as well, and initially it was a little disconcerting because the dry leaf almost smelled like Christmas (clove, cinnamon), and I have had little success with teas spiced this way (from any company). However, I should not have worried. This is without a doubt the smoothest, sweetest tea I’ve ever had from MF. And so almondy! That’s what really won me over. The almond is strong and rich, in a slightly marzipan-y way (and not just nutty). The vanilla is creamy and sweet, and combined with the spices it really reminds me of a spiced almond cookie. The spices themselves don’t overtake the rest of the blend (like they so often do). And here we have found a base tea that I truly enjoy (wish I knew what it was, haha!). Smooth, with good body and nicely balanced.
Very glad that I picked this one up (and apparently got it for a steal at $24 when it retails for 25€ on their website).
ETA: I meant to mention that I don’t really get a distinct rose flavor here, which is a little disappointing but the rest of it is so delicious that it doesn’t bother me. I still have Fauchon’s La Naissance for when I want an almond-rose blend.
The dry leaf smells very much like what I would imagine a dark chocolate liquor would smell, and the steeped tea smells likewise. After it was first brewed and I was allowing it to cool however, I could swear it smelled just like Tootsie rolls…Quite the opposite of the gourmet experience this tea was aiming at. This impression didn’t last long, though. There is a sourness in both this and in Florence that reminds me more of alcohol than it reminds me of the bitterness of dark chocolate. I don’t know what I would do to improve my experience of these teas. Perhaps soy milk…?
This is the second new tea I tried tonight. I have never tasted a macaron to my knowledge, and probably never will in the future since I am vegan. I could get the crusty meringue notes, but it was overwhelmed by artificial fruitiness. Maybe if I’d experienced a macaron I’d like this one better? I’ll definitely give it another try, but this one may wind up being swapped.
The teas I ordered for my birthday arrived today, and this was the first one I decided to try. It’s maybe not the most complex tea I’ve tasted, but it is so, so good. I don’t think I’ve ever had a tea that captured the smell of fresh, perfectly ripe strawberries so well. It also has strong notes of caramel/toffee and some apple. I hope they keep this blend around!
I had Em and M (I did not do that on purpose) over for dinner and we had a pot of this because Em was all ‘no caffeine because sleep no caf no caf hyper’.
And M, who stayed in my apartment while I was away was all, ‘okay so I found your tea stash and are you aware you might possibly have a problem?’
Oh, and Veronica Mars! And that kid on the plane and all the other people, including that guy and all those other things, but I’m too tired for coherence, so I’m off to bed.