Before I start I have to come clean with something: I don’t like strawberry things. Weird, eh? I also have the worst hand at steeping black teas and avoid them for their astringency.
Already, the strawberry scented Marco Polo and I look to be in a doomed relationship but that’s not the case. Oddly enough, I find this tea to be delicious. I’m not even sure the “strawberry” tag is right- it’s more of an impression of many syrupy fruits. It reminds me of dark chocolate dipped strawberries, which I do like, or even of a cherry jam filled black forest cake. There are fruity and creamy components but the base is ultimately dark and strong. It’s nice to have a dessert tea that doesn’t scrap the “tea” part or isn’t masked over with sugar additives.
My cup today started out hot and astringent, to warm and floral, and then lukewarm with a finishing aftertaste of fruity chocolate. My now empty cup smells like caramel. It’s a complex tea and I can’t do it justice.
Side note: I received this as a gift, along with three other teas, from a friend who came over for a wedding. I’m chocked that Mariage Frères isn’t more readily available where I live but grateful for the experience.