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Black Tea
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Edit tea info Last updated by CHAroma
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205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 15 sec

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11 Tasting Notes View all

From Mariage Frères

An Indian tea flavoured with extracts of choice vanilla and Jamaican rum.

PREPARATION ADVICE FOR 1 CUP :
Amount of tea leaves: 2.5g
Best water temperature: 95 °C
Infusion time: 3-5 min

About Mariage Frères View company

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11 Tasting Notes

89
378 tasting notes

I bought Jamaïque 1 month ago when the weather was so hot : 37°c and the Mariage Salesman told me he was wondering HOW I can pick up and choice this tea (flavoured Vanilla and rum) by such a weather :)

I haven’t had it since today and I didn’t have paid attention to the tea description and left it steep for 2 minutes >>>>O_O<<<< ohohohohohoho lucky me ! it is almost bitter ! this is surely an Assam…the kind of used with Wedding Impérial…the capricious to brew !!!

Cooling the little bitterness disappeared and I have a pleasant cup, robust with a creamy and delightful vanilla and of course, in a supportive role only RUM.
That’s delicious, I’m waiting forward to try tomorrow with 1 minute and a half brewing time , I’m sure it would be absolutely perfect.
I’m so happy MF used such an high personnalitea base for its Jamaïque.

I hope now the rum contained here would just kill the unglorious mosquitos who are driving me mad since 2 weeks now ! My legs, my arms are just a battlefield and I’m losing this war.
We often say in French : ce n’est pas la petite bête qui va manger la grosse (it’s not the small beast who is going to eat the big one- meaning it’s more scared of you than you are of it) in my case the small ones are really eating me, help me rum !!!

Preparation
Boiling 2 min, 0 sec
alaudacorax

Mosquitoes? Perhaps you need a tea with plenty of garlic in the mix!

cteresa

Poor you, I so hate mosquitoes.

(stupid advice, but keep all windows shut at night and ever ever light a light in a room or house where windows are open at night. Mosquitoes attack all lights using half the speed of light. But I guess everybody knows that)

Have you ever tried tea tree oil? or citronella oil? Not so nice smelling, but they work a bit.

Ysaurella

Alaudacorax :as French I love garlic but surely bizarre in a tea :)

Teresa I love to sleep with windows wide opened to refresh the flat so…it’s my punishment, I need to buy citronella oil, I had this when I was a child

cteresa

I got to copy these brewing instructions, with a timer! I suspect I am killing this.

Anna

I’m going to try a shorter brewing time, too!

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85
80 tasting notes

Wow… can I say WOW?
This tea rolls out of its black glittering bag already speaking a mouthful. Its pleasantly dark, like a rich fragrance you only dream of finding at the Guerlian counter. I dare to say that this might be a By Kilian fragrance without the lock and key.

It’s plummy, boozy, wonderfully vanillic and a polite black tea. To brew this beauty, they say let it go for 5 minutes and I probably did four on the first steep. In the cup the fragrance was just as divine as what wafted from the sack. The plummy note was a bit more pronounced. On the second steep I let it go and got lazy with its rest. The booziness has faded but the plum is there with a distinct sharpness. Perhaps it isn’t meant to be left alone so long or treated like a left-over?

As for taste… well it’s fine without sugars, milk or cream. It isn’t a fruity flavor in the sense that you recover from the first sip thinking, “Wow blackberry jam.” It’s subtle, elegant, vanilla black tea with the moodiness of a distant plum-berry that at some point snuggled with a soft tobacco or was blessed by fine leather. A fabulous afternoon tea that would make any repast a seduction of the senses.

How it relates to my views on the The de Paques by Mariage Freres: While my The de Paques is assured a prominent place in the teas of my desires (and I crave it often), it is the tea of morning and all things bright. I could dress it up with fruit, delicate cakes and even a ham and brie. Jamaique takes thought and provides mouthwatering contemplation yet not in the way of a zen-Buddha green, think old refined library, deep curtains and soft leather chairs… I swear, I could wear this tea.

Preparation
4 min, 30 sec
BrookeM

What a lovely, lovely review. Thank you for that.

BrookeM

Alicia, I would love to know what your favorite teas are. It sounds like you know what you are talking about.

Alicia

Sadly, I just started down the tea road again. Mariage Freres was the brand that caught my eye and I am in love. I have a collection of Kusmi teas I started with but so far none of them has grabbed me as passionately as Jamaique or The de Paques. I those two found me actually.

Kusmi Violet is soothing and has a wonderful violet taste/smell I adore. The Green Tea with Almond smells lovely but is so so. Not a bad tea but my tastes are venturing in a different direction. I want something more aggressive perhaps? I am a coffee drinker so perhaps that makes me biased?

I do have a collection of flowering teas both by Mariage Freres and the Republic of Tea. Mariage Freres makes this flowering jasmine number that is as fine as perfume! A quick steep and the liquid is pure heaven but don’t let that little flower sit! She gets angry and bitter… change her bath water often and enjoy it! LOL They are more fun to watch than anything and I think I am fonder of Black teas because I trouble them with milk.

However, I am guilty of loving some good old Lipton Sun Tea. I can’t recall a single memory I don’t enjoy on the farm growing up that didn’t cameo an old pickle jar filled with sun tea.

BrookeM

Alicia,
You are so cool:) Let me ask you a question the flowering jasmine teas my Mariage Freres that you like are which ones? I love flowering tea and jasmine is my favorite. Silver Needle Jasmine by Rishi is awesome.

Alicia

Bourgeon de Thé au Jasmin by Mariage Freres is the packet that I have open just now. I have Fleur de Voyage but haven’t tried them as of yet.

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89
2 tasting notes

Awesome tea. It reminds me a lot of rhum cake. If i close my eyes, i can totally see a freshly baked rhum cake in front of me. Love it!

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90
1042 tasting notes

I also have a sample of this one from Cteresa, so this afternoon’s cup comes courtesy of her. I gave 1 tsp of leaf approximately 3 minutes in boiling water, and added a splash of milk. The taste is a little different to the previous cup I tried. This time, I’m getting a flavour much more reminiscent of rum raisin ice cream. There’s a very clear raisin flavour, followed by a tang of rum (navy, rather than white), almost as if rum infused raisins had been added to the tea base. There’s also a sweet, silky creaminess, which I’m assuming is the vanilla, and which is so reminiscent of ice cream it’s almost unreal. At the very end of the sip, there’s a hint of dark chocolate. It’s deep, dark, decadent and delicious.

Last time I drank a cup of this, I was a little cautious with the brew time. I think the extra minute helps the flavour immensely, although I definitely need milk to cut through the tiny bit of astringency that creates. This is such a boozy, intriguing cup, it almost feels wrong to be drinking it at work! Gorgeous, through, except now I’d also like a bowl of ice cream. Ah well, I can dream sweet dreams until it’s time to go home!

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 0 sec 1 tsp
Indigobloom

This sounds amazing. I love rum teas, there aren’t enough around heh

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74
333 tasting notes

I opened this package over a month ago. Had it precisely twice being underwhelmed by it, and actually Anna, to whom I sent a sample, reviewed it before me. So I feel like, yeah, I should get to it, and just say something about it.

First thing, I am screwing up brewing this. I have not nailed it it, yet, though I think this tea for some reason does not like my tap water (some teas do not mind even some very grand teas, some do mind. Unpredictable) and I had to up the dosage from my first attempts. And today got distracted while brewing it, brewed it slightly too long and it showed in a bit of bitterness towards the end of my cup.

The dry leaf smells fabulous (which was why i got it), boozy! Rhum, and good rhum, none of that Bacardi or worse stuff, a sugary sweet scent so different from the other more usual sugarcane derivatives. With vanilla and a hint of chocolate. Awesome! Beyond awesome , count me in. 100 grams please.

But I am still trying to crack how to brew this. This third time, it was better, a discernible taste closer to the scent. But I still think I can get more out of this tea, must experiment and not forget it.

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 5 min, 30 sec
Anna

I think because I’m so used to Pleine Lune and Wedding Impérial, which are both SUPER rich and almost overwhelming in the cup, I was confused by both this one and Vanille des Iles – then again, I love the base teas so much, I still enjoy them terribly.

Ysaurella

oh Teresa, 5 minutes steeping is really too long…2 minutes is really better. with me 5 minutes and the cup is bitter…

cteresa

I think you are right Ysaurella, I will definitely try 2 minutes!

cteresa

(this is a cousin of wedding imperial, btw, IMO!)

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80
300 tasting notes

Right, so how do I even explain the origin of this sample? Well, we’re doing the second round of the EU swap box, and cteresa forgot to put one of the samples she wanted to send out in the box… so she sent an envelope, too, a few days later. Of course, seeing as cteresa is cteresa (i.e. completely awesome) she added even more tea samples (hey, empty envelope, gotta fill it).

Among these were a couple that I’ve been dying to try, including this one. I have a pretty decent MF reseller here, but they haven’t had Jamaïque in stock since I moved back.

My prediction for this tea was that it would be like Vanille des Iles with a twist – and yes, that’s more or less what I find myself with here. Scent wise, there’s much more caramel in VdI, making for a rounder, sweeter profile. In terms of Jamaïque, though, there is this perfect, boozy note topping off the vanilla base. The same goes for the brewed tea, even though I find myself struggling more with flavour recollection than scent recollection this time around. In short, however – Jamaïque fronts less caramel and more booze.

It’s a very enjoyable, smooth cup, but just as in the case of VdI, I would have enjoyed a more exuberant vanilla presence.

Thank you, cteresa!

[Spin-off sample from the second round of the EU Travelling Box, spring 2014.]

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 0 sec
cteresa

You are welcome! Can’t believe I had not spotted this on your shopping list before sending the box

And uh got to make my own taste note of it as well

Anna

It was so nice to finally get to try it, thanks again. And GASP! You have not yet produced a tasting note for this? Oh, cteresa.

cteresa

I was in a hurry! and was in a hurry the next time I had it, and then had tea box samples to try, and a quest to finish teas. But yes been very bad at not making taste notes for this, will have to fix it soon.

cteresa

Also part of the problem is, I think those two first brews are made were not fair trials, and I should be able to get more out of this. I adore the scent, sooo boozy and decadent, but was a bit disappointed in taste. Got to tweak those brewing parameters.

Ysaurella

the tea base is really different vs Vanille des îles.
This one is a strong assam which turns bitter with long steeps.
Jamaïque’s main host is really rhum to me and the strong personnality of its tea base

Anna

I’m going to try to brew it longer and cooler, Ysaurella-style next time, to see if it gets even better.

Anna

I meant shorter, feh.

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75
5241 tasting notes

i had a cup of this tonight to try and relax and enjoy something new. Sadly i was distracted and didn’t pay enough attention to this one from Ysaurella what i do remember is being pleasantly surprised by it as i didn’t bother reading to find out what sort of tea it was. tasty for sure! thankfully i have a bit more of this from my lovely french swapping partner to try it again!

Ysaurella

ah yes you should give another try, be careful with the steeping time…not above 2 minutes :)

Sil

yes! i saw your note :) it was a lovely tea, i jsut didn’t pay as much attention to it as i meant to :)

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