drank Marzipan by TeaGschwendner
33 tasting notes

This tea smells exactly like its namesake — sweet, fragrant marzipan. I wanted to start scooping leaves into my mouth right there at the store, so I picked up 250g of it without ever tasting it brewed. I’m glad I did for two reasons — first, I went through about 30g of it before I found my “sweet spot” for this VERY FINICKY tea, but once I got it right I am glad I have a decent supply of it.

The more TeaGschwendner teas I try, the more I am learning to just ignore their ridiculous brewing recommendations. They pretty much just say “boiling water, 2 minutes, 1 tsp-8oz cup” for every flavored black in their book. On some of their teas, more than 2 minutes WILL result in bitter, muddled, or unbalanced flavors, and for me this was one of them… but at 2 minutes with boiling water, I still smelled the marzipan but the flavor was a bit weak for my tastes.

So, like a few other TeaGschwendner teas which disappointed me at first, I experimented with some varying temps and brew times “bracket tournament style” (I only have 2 of my favorite stainless steel infusers lol). After a morning of brewing several liters of this stuff, I have a kitchen that smells like a patisserie and finally a delightful cuppa marzipan goodness. I also have a small pitcher of this sitting in the fridge (a blend of the unfinished brews) to try iced just for fun, although without the strong aromatic effect from a hot tea I am guessing it won’t be as good as I imagine.

2 minutes wound up being the sweet spot for me, but at 200F and two heaping teaspoons of the leaf (probably about 2.5tsp). Anything over 2 minutes and the black tea starts overpowering the marzipan, everything goes out of balance and it doesn’t really even taste that great anymore, somehow the faint notes of marzipan fool my senses into sensing some straw-like notes you’d expect from a Dian Hong but not an Indian black, and it doesn’t go well with the almondy-marzipan in the background. But at 2 minutes, 1 tsp winds up being a bit weak for me overall.

So my recommendation is to go heavy on the leaf, bring the temp down from boiling to about 200F for me, and stick to the odd 2-minute warning and you get a delicious hot cuppa marzipan. There is a slight smooth sweetness to the brew unadulterated, but I just HAVE to add a bit of stevia (or other kind of sweetener) to really make it pop "hey, you’re drinking liquid marzipan!!). I have already tried this blended with a few other teas, it’s horrible with Mariage Freres Vanille Imperial, pretty good with TGSR’s Caramel and I love it with a few cocoa nibs. Still searching for that perfect “dark chocolate covered marzipan” blend so I can make this a permanent stock in my pantry.

Definitely one of my favorites from TeaGschwendner so far, still plenty of bags to open & try once a few tins go empty & free up ;-)

200 °F / 93 °C 2 min, 0 sec 3 tsp 8 OZ / 250 ML

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Musician, pilot, philanthropist, tea lover. Nothing beats a spiced oolong at 10,000 feet. Except maybe a cuppa dian hong with my feet next to the fireplace. Or some fresh bai hao yin zhen before bedtime. My rating system is pretty much like this:

1-20 : ‘Blech’ cuppa. Didn’t even finish the one I brewed, rest went in trash. That bad, at least for me.

21-40: ‘Meh’ cuppa. Finished it but threw away the rest of the tea or used it for other purposes like baking, gifts for in-laws, or serve to unwanted houseguests. Kinda like Twinnings or Lipton bag tea.

41-60: ‘Standard’ cuppa. Won’t buy any more, but will certainly brew all that I have left. Probably will use it to blend with other teas or as a base, or large quantities of iced tea for parties and such.

61-80: Good cuppa. Now we’re talking. Worth buying more if at the right price, love blending some of these too. Sometimes a few oddballs will find their way into this score just because I liked the fruity flavor or having it as an iced tea. Also my starting score range for new kinds of tea until I develop a good feel for my preferences or learn to better distinguish quality characteristics.

81-99: Awesome cuppa. You’ll probably find this in my pantry pretty regularly, unless it has been discontinued or I’m waiting for my next trip to Asia or Europe to pick up some more. Holds up well to multiple infusions (unless black/herbal), and will typically drink it unadulterated/straight. I’ll gladly pay premium prices and chances are I’ll be ordering and tasting a bunch of other teas this producer/company offers.

100: Cuppa bliss, oh where have you been all my life???! I will burn frequent flier miles and journey to the ends of the earth while paying nearly any price to make sure I have this stocked at all times. Over time as I discover some magical new teas, a few may fall off this list. Try to keep it max 1 per type of tea.

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