Palais des Thés

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Recent Tasting Notes

72

While it is hardly the “indulgent, voluptuous black tea” saucily promised on the teabag, this is much better than previous Palais de Thes.

It states it contains almond, cinnamon and vanilla, spiced with a hint of ginger. I get no ginger, but the cinnamon and vanilla come through well. There’s also alleged apple but it’s minimal.

It tastes rather like a poor imitation of Mariage Freres The de Noel brewed at half strength. I have taken to brewing my Palais de Thes in a small Japanese cup with about 100-150ml of water, since that is the only way they taste of anything to me.

I bought the Advent Calendar so am working my way steadily through. I think The des Amants is the best of a bad lot. But if you like this profile, just go for the Mariage Freres Noel. It’s a similar flavour profile and exceedingly more pleasant.

Flavors: Almond, Cinnamon, Vanilla

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 4 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 150 OZ / 4436 ML

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71

Finally, a Palais de Thes with a bit of flavour. The green tea base is watery and thin, but I can detect vanilla and a whiff of almond. The aroma reminds me of a vanilla-scented skincare product- hand cream, perhaps? I get a floral hint which is supposed to be rose but is not strong enough to be distinguishable as such.

Overall, a weak and thin cup but I’m just delighted I actually got Palais des Thes to present a recognizable flavour. I never considered myself to be a particular fan of bracing tea, but perhaps I am. This brand consistently makes me wonder if I’d been sleepwalking and I’m actually just drinking the third steep of the morning, totally unaware. Alas, no. This is first steep so I just have to class it as sad, watery tea.

Flavors: Almond, Floral, Vanilla

Preparation
170 °F / 76 °C 3 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 100 OZ / 2957 ML
ashmanra

A friend just brought the rooibos version of this. I am not a fan of red rooibos but it was actually pretty good. The rooibos was very woody and less Robitusson-y than some.

blueeyedsurprise

Oh, that’s good. I generally avoid the red for the same reasons, but I can appreciate a more woody blend. The red is such a gamble, I usually steer well clear!

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January Sipdown Prompt – a grocery store tea

Ashman and I have been having a caffeine free cuppa most nights here lately. Today my bestie came over and she had just bought this at The Fresh Market. She left a couple of bags of this tea with me. Neither of us love red rooibos but we both enjoyed Caramel and Rum by Lupicia so we thought this one might be okay.

I am happy to say that while it is not a tea I will run out to buy, it is not bad and I am enjoying my cup well enough. Instead of tasting just like Robitusson, this is woody. This is like those wooden spoons they gave you in primary school for eating ice cream. Ashman actually loved the taste of the wooden spoons (???) but I did not. The richness of the vanilla flavoring is making this cup nicely palatable, though.

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64

Back to the Palais des Thes with some dread. Today it’s Le The Merveilleux, which boldly promises to be “green tea with sweet notes of caramelized almonds and pistachio bursting with flavours and emotions.”

Who’s bursting with emotions? The green tea? The pistachios? Or me for having to endure another cup of this watery doom?

First off, it smells quite nice, like those dried fruit/nut shops you can find in the city. A lot of aromas going on at once, but the dominant one is almond. Not “caramelized,” just marzipan-type sweet almond.

Like most of the other teas from this brand, it’s watery. It tastes like a third steep every time. Today, I brewed it with 100ml of water for an extra minute beyond recommendations and I’m still getting very little flavour. It tastes like a generic tisane with some hints of marzipan and cinnamon. I get no hint of the green tea nor pistachio whatsoever.

For a similar flavour profile that actually tastes of something, try Roasted Almond by Clipper Ship. It’s caffeine free but is exceedingly more pleasant than this flavourless mess at less than half the price.

The English name on this is “Tea of Wonder.” I Wonder how this Tea company is still in business. Perhaps their market is people who really don’t like tea, rather like Starbucks is for people who really don’t like coffee.

Flavors: Almond, Cinnamon, Nutty

Preparation
170 °F / 76 °C 5 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 100 OZ / 2957 ML
Michelle

Ah, life is too short to drink cups of ‘watery doom’ even if it made me lol. Maybe you should swap with someone for some stout breakfast tea.

blueeyedsurprise

Haha! If I’d had a whole tin of this, I’d have passed it onto someone I really didn’t like all that much. Luckily, it’s part of their advent calendar, so only a single serving need be endured. I’d switch this out for an ancient, back of the drawer bog-standard Lipton in a heartbeat if it came down to it.

gmathis

I’ve had pretty good luck with Palais des Thes unflavored/single estate varieties; sorry your results weren’t the same with their blends.

blueeyedsurprise

The advent calendar I got was mostly blends, I believe, the but the jasmine wasn’t bad. I’ll see if I can rustle up a single estate variety in there, perhaps I’ll have better luck.

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65

It’s clear Palais de Thes and I aren’t going to get on. This tea sounds like all the things I like:

“Inspired by a traditional Turkish recipe, this sweet and fruity green tea evokes green dates, orange blossoms, roses, and red berries.”

I get a flowery aroma over a rather cheap tasting sencha when I open the bag. Oddly enough, after it’s brewed, I got a dominant buttery gourmand note which is not mentioned in the description. I get a hint of date, but very little orange blossom or rose. As with most of my Palais des Thes, this is a weak cuppa. I tried this with 150ml and it’s still flavoured water. I followed the instructions exactly and even oversteeped in a vain quest for actual flavour. Still tastes like The Ghost of Cuppas Past, or a fourth infusion on a single bag.

I shall power through the rest of the advent calendar, but this is not a brand I care to ever revisit.

Flavors: Creamy, Dates, Grassy

Preparation
170 °F / 76 °C 3 min, 45 sec 2 tsp 150 OZ / 4436 ML

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70

Approaching this with some trepidation, this is a “Yunnan black tea and bergamont.” It says it’s an Earl Grey, which I like in general but don’t love.

The bergamont is quite weak, which can be good if you’re not a huge fan. I’d say it’s just a hint, but on the upside, it lets the good quality Yunnan base shine through. It does taste like a good quality cup of Yunnan with a hint of bergamont. If you are looking for a proper, bracing Earl Grey, this is definitely not it.

Since I haven’t been having the best experience with this brand, I’ve been steeping each bag exactly according to instructions. This was 200F at 4 minutes, but I still felt it was a bit weak, so I let it go to 5 minutes.

This is my 5th or 6th Palais des Thes, and I’ve had two experiences thus far:

1. Is this just hot water?
2. This isn’t bad, but I’ve tasted it a million times before.

I have yet to taste anything I’d repurchase at even half their asking price. To be fair, I’m living in the US so EU prices can sometimes be ridiculously inflated. Luckily, for me, the fun part of this hobby is trying all sorts of new teas from all over the world, even if they’re not all smashing successes. This one gets points for the good quality Yunnan and actually tasting of tea, unlike its other Palais des Thes comrades I have encountered. If you are looking to burn money on an Earl Grey with minimum bergamont (why?), this would be a contender.

Flavors: Bergamot

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 5 min, 0 sec 2 g 7 OZ / 207 ML

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30

Not so magnifique, I’m afraid. Another very weak brew from Palais Des Thes. Their description reads, “A warming blend of green tea with fruity, succulent notes of pear, vanilla and almond.”

This tastes like water with a weak aroma of vanilla and green tea. I have brewed exactly to instructions and it’s just absolutely flavourless. It tastes like I’ve brewed a gallon of hot water with a single bag. I’ve kept it in for 4 minutes over the recommended 3 minutes and only minimal pear flavour emerged.

This would be perfect for a person who hates tea but for some reason wants to be seen drinking it. But quite dreadful for the rest of us.

Preparation
170 °F / 76 °C 3 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 7 OZ / 207 ML

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74

And back to the Palais des Thes with an herbal selection this evening. Brews nicely to a pleasant light amber cup with the classy muslin teabag.

Heavy on the verbena, (though it tastes more like lemongrass) with a minty aftertaste that grows more prominent as the tea cools, plus some sneaky rosehips. The verbena/lemongrassy note overpowers to the point where I cannot really detect any significant orange. The strength is reasonable when brewed as suggested- not too weak, not too strong.

But, it tastes like any tea you’ve ever had after a fancy spa treatment. It’s totally generic to the point where I feel like I’ve tasted this dozens of times before from airport lounges to Starbucks to indie tea shops in Kyoto. It’s blonde wood and fluffy white robe “wellness.” It’s totally boring.

But, sometimes boring is nice when we’re too tired to be adventurous, so there is a time and place for everything. It’s a good quality blend, but at $22USD for about 125g, I think it’s way it’s overpriced.

For my ratings, I do consider price as part of the overall score vs. just straight tea quality. I will judge a pricey tea more strictly than a cheap one, though quality and taste are the most important factor. If this were a $4 box of Celestial Seasonings, I’d give it a higher score. But this tea’s worst sin is just being so….utterly generic.

Flavors: Citrus, Lemongrass, Mint, Rosehips

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 3 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML
gmathis

You’ve described the genre perfectly!

blueeyedsurprise

Ha, thank you! I feel as though I’m losing my mind when I keep tasting the same blends over and over.

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The first tea that I drank post-advents! Why this tea? Well, why not? I think I just felt a little paralyzed by how much choice I suddenly had and I ended up going for the very first tin that I grabbed off the shelf. No thoughts, just tea.

It’s a nice enough chocolate orange tea. Heavier on the orange which, since this is a green tea base, makes sense to me in a way I can’t quite put into words. I think if the chocolate was heavier this might have read as thin to me since the green tea has a more gentle body. Instead this manages to be a fresh feeling in a way chocolate blends are typically not. Why is it called Jungle, though? That part makes zero sense to me.

Also, it’s nice to see that Palais de Thes is capable of doing a fresh and juicy orange flavour since their “Juicy sunrise” blend with orange is so chalky and medicinal.

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75

Third time’s the charm for Palais des Thes. After two disappointments, this jasmine is quite nice. However, their claim of “One of the finest jasmine teas with a high proportion of tips. This green tea has a velvety texture that highlights every aspect of jasmine without even a hint of bitterness,” is a bit exaggerated.

The tea is a nice quality green with a powerful jasmine aroma and flavour. No mistaking this tea- it’s jasmine through and through. It’s a bright, clean note- not soapy as some jasmine can be- but despite the promises, I do get a hint of bitterness as it cools. I brewed exactly as instructed because jasmines can be finicky.

At least this particular tea brewed nicely to a proper, recognizable cuppa. The last couple teas I tried from this brand were either terribly watery or had flavours so bland they were barely an afterthought. I’m going through the advent calendar but can’t imagine revisiting the brand unless the rest of their teas are spectacular.

Given the high price of this tea in the US, I wouldn’t repurchase. For a divine jasmine, I would have no problem splurging. But this, sadly is not, so I’d go with Yamamoto Yama Jasmine in a heartbeat. Almost as nice for about 3/4 less.

Flavors: Jasmine

Preparation
170 °F / 76 °C 3 min, 0 sec 2 g 5 OZ / 150 ML

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60

Another Palais des Thés, "a green tea…with Damas rose and exotic fruits – mango, yellow peach, and citrus fruits – giving it the distinct flavor of a petal jelly. (?)

I am getting a distinct flavour…of not much at all. A hint of rose, some generic fruit. The overall tea is very weak, I can’t even really taste the green tea. This whole blend is watery and unpleasant. I’m using a smaller cuppa due to the smaller teabag and even oversteeping, and still not getting much flavour.

My second Palais des Thés, and I’m totally underwhelmed. 22 more to go, hope it gets better.

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 3 min, 0 sec 2 g 6 OZ / 177 ML

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72

My first Palais des Thés and I am not terribly impressed. It’s got a strong strawberry note with a grassy/hay finish (cornflower?) and a bit of sweetness over a perfectly serviceable black blend, but I do not get any of the promised honey, lavender, or rhubarb flavours.

I got this from the 2023 advent calendar that was on sale (hooray for procrastinating) as a way to try Palais des Thés. The calendar packaging is lovely, but I’ll be opening at random since I waited so long. The teabag is an attractive muslin cotton cloth, on the small side but seem potent enough for a decent cuppa. I don’t particularly like this tea enough to attempt a second steep.

As with other French teas, the description is way over the top: “An exquisite black tea with induldgent notes of strawberry and flowers.”

So far, it’s been a quite average tea experience, but I’m keeping an open mind for the other 23 offerings.

Flavors: Fruity, Grassy, Hay, Strawberry

Preparation
185 °F / 85 °C 4 min, 0 sec 2 g 8 OZ / 236 ML
ashmanra

The Fresh Market had a single one of these advents by the cash register in a sale barrel but there was no price on it so I skipped it. If I go back I might hunt around to see if there are any more at a shockingly low price.

blueeyedsurprise

I paid $24 with free shipping from Bloomingdale’s when they had a coupon code, so I figured $1 per cup was reasonable enough. The full price of $38 plus shipping seemed a bit cheeky.

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Cold Brew!

Yeaaaahhh nope.

Unfortunately, I think this is not only the first big flop from this recent Palais des Thes order but also just one of the worst teas I drank this past week in general. I was excited about a really bright, sweet and zesty orange mate but juicy is so far off the mark. Chalky, maybe. I mean, this tea really tasted like Flintstone vitamins in a way that was just unwelcome. I’m really not sure why either aside from something in the flavouring used possibly just being really off.

Definitely disappointing.

Tea Photo: https://www.instagram.com/p/C0H1GnfRlGd/?img_index=6 (6th Pic)

Song Pairing: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lYqsZyPF-EU

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Drank a very large pot of this tea yesterday while working and I really, really enjoyed it. In fact, it might be my favourite tea I’ve ever had from Palais de Thes. Very warm and toasty with lots of grain/cereal type flavours alongside just a hint of a coppery mineral note, a very mouth coating caramel-like sweetness, and a big of a raw and unroasted peanut finish. Most interest was the ever so slight bean-y sort of vegetal undertone. I mean, it makes sense because there’s both soy bean and chamaecrista (a type of pea) in the blend.

Chamaecrista is actually a new to me ingredient, and I find it SUPER fascinating. The blend as a whole is so wild and beautiful looking, but the whole, dried pea pods in it from this ingredient are next level stunning. I may try and isolate a few of them from the rest of the blend to brew up, just to get a better sense of what they taste like on their own. From my reading, it seems like they might be one of the bigger contributors in this tea in terms of that pleasant natural, coating sweetness I was picking up.

I don’t know if this is traditional or not – it has that sort of “vibe” to it and there’s no flavouring or anything like that added. But I’ve also never seen anything quite like it. As a profound lover of all things “roast” when it comes to tea, I think this is such a uniquely roasty blend to add to my assortment. Love it!

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SIpdown (2415)!

I received a sachet of this as a free sample in a recent order – looks like this is a new offering from Palais de Thes as part of their winter/Christmas assortment. I don’t usually love green tea, but pear and green tea is a combo that works better for me than many others. I thought this was nice. The pear was light and juicy with a floral undertone to it, and just sweet enough though I think it would be a misnomer to call this a “sweet tea”. Definitely a little bit on the thinner side though in terms of body and intensity, and as I was drinking it I kept thinking to myself how much I would rather just be having their “Japan Detox” blend (one of the few blends they carry that I enjoy) which is another pear flavoured green tea blend. A better one, in my opinion.

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80
drank Limoncha by Palais des Thés
15647 tasting notes

The dry leaf of this tea smells so good but something about the steeped taste didn’t quite land. I did enjoy the zesty, bright notes of lime but it seemed to be missing some of the more aromatic sweet, nutty and creamy notes I get from the smell. Also just a tiny bit rough in terms of mouthfeel with a more coarse taste once the citrus subsided.

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80
drank Limoncha by Palais des Thés
15647 tasting notes

Cold Brew!

Had this earlier in the week and it was not good.

I liked it hot, but something about the combination of the very milky notes with such a bright, fresh lime was deeping unsettling as a cold drink. Made me think of rancid yogurt. The best part was the toastiness of the rice in the blend, but it wasn’t enough to salvage this upsetting pairing of flavours.

I will be sticking to hot preparation going forward.

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80
drank Limoncha by Palais des Thés
15647 tasting notes

A friend recently ordered the Palais de Thes advent and she kindly offered to let me tack on some items to her order – including this blend!

I think the concept is really interesting – like a sweeter and more citrusy genmaicha. The combo of lemon and genmaicha sounds a little funny on paper, but citrus flavours actually compliment roasted profiles really well so I was excited to see how it would play out. Upon first taste, it’s pretty solid! Definitely a lighter toastiness from the brown rice than I was expecting, but the added body of the black tea was a welcome addition. The lemon wasn’t light, but it was milder than expected with a gentle sweetness and a pleasant brightness. There’s also almond flavouring in the blend, though I didn’t find it particularly distinct. My initial impression is that it’s mostly adding another nuanced type of sweetness and some flavour depth while otherwise sort of co-mingling with the nuttiness of the rice.

I also got the impression from this blend that it’s the sort of one that only grows on you even more with time as you become more acquianted to the profile. I’m excited to see if that happens – I’ve historically not been a huge fan of Palais de The’s blending style but this was right up my alley.

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30

Maybe i don’t like Sheng, maybe i’m just not used to it, maybe it needs more time to be better ? I have no clue, but i couldn’t drink this at all, it was so bad for my taste i couldn’t get any notes of anything.
A friend of mine tasted from the same cup, and was getting all the aromas (apricot for example)

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 4 min, 0 sec 6 g 10 OZ / 300 ML
ashmanra

I often steep sheng at very low temperatures. Perhaps try 175F or even 160F.

Clemenceau Sébastien

Hello, thanks, i’ll check if my friend still has some, and will try again at lower temp, but it’s really really astringent, but i think i tried at 80,85 and 90°C already.
Will have another try, but it seems i have the same issue with white teas :/

ashmanra

Perhaps a really short steep would help. On the other hand, it may simply be a tea that isn’t quite to your tastes, and that is okay!

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87

Apparently this one is a bit of a hit or miss, depending on which shop you buy it, it could be a good or bad batch.
Fortunately i think i got a good one.
This was my 1st puer tea ever, and i really enjoyed it ! Very earthy, could very much tast the mushroom !
Gongfu, 1 rince after 15 seconds, then 30 seconds steps (6+ times)

Flavors: Mushrooms, Wet Earth, Wood

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 0 min, 30 sec 6 g 100 OZ / 2957 ML

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76

Good ok oolong i think, this was the 1st one i ever tried.
Good notes of vanilla, butter for me.

Flavors: Butter, Vanilla

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 15 sec 6 g 3 OZ / 100 ML

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90

Very good daily rooibos i enjoy ;)
You can smell cherry and taste it ! It’s very enjoyable.

Flavors: Cherry

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 5 min, 0 sec 6 g 10 OZ / 300 ML

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75

No notes yet. Add one?

Flavors: Mulberry, Peach, Pear

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 4 min, 30 sec 20 g 34 OZ / 1000 ML

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