Tea type
Black Tea
Black Tea
Chocolate, Sweet, Vanilla, Raspberry, Cream, Strawberry, Fruity, Red Fruits, Smooth, Caramel, Creamy, Berries, Flowers, Jam, Tart, Malt
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Bulk, Loose Leaf, Sachet
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Edit tea info Last updated by Sivasubramanian
Average preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 45 sec 35 oz / 1027 ml

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258 Tasting Notes View all

  • “Yesterday’s sprinkles gave way to real rain. You can just feel the tired old earth around me go “ahhhhhh.” I woke up craving this. I must have needed an “ahhhh” too. This is lovely and fruity (love...” Read full tasting note
  • “SIPDOWN! I loved this when I first got it, but I did find it to be finicky – finicky, but worth it. As long as I keep the temp around 203F and the time around three minutes this is great. Hubby...” Read full tasting note
  • “It’s been forever since I’ve had this tea. But not because I don’t love it. It’s actually the opposite – I adore this tea so much that I haven’t been able to force myself to open the new tin of...” Read full tasting note
  • “Sipdown! Had a small cup of this before tucking the rest ofth is away For cavocorax :) while I enjoy this one, it’s not my favourite of the MF teas that I’ve had the pleasure of trying.” Read full tasting note

From Mariage Frères

Mariage Frères’ most famous secret is this mysterious blend that takes you to distant lands and strange countries. The aroma of Chinese and Tibetan flowers and fruit lend it a uniquely velvety taste. Its extraordinary bouquet makes Marco Polo the most legendary of flavoured teas.

Succès incontesté de la Maison Mariage Frères, ce mélange secret vous fera voyager dans les plus lointaines et mystérieuses contrées. Les senteurs de fleurs et de fruits de Chine et du Tibet lui confèrent un arôme velouté unique. Un bouquet extraordinaire pour le plus mythique des thés parfumés.

About Mariage Frères View company

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258 Tasting Notes

612 tasting notes

This tastes like a memory I’m having trouble placing, something from childhood. Candy strawberry and flowers, a memory-provoking perfume. I’d say it’s a little like those tinned little fruity hard candies from Europe, or even slightly like the gooey centers in those strawberry candies, sized and textured like lozenges, that come in wrappers designed to resemble a (clip art-ish) fresh strawberry, you know the ones I mean? A bit like that. I loved those and would gorge on ‘em ’til my teeth hurt when I was a kid (and I wasn’t really a candy person in general). So this was a sweet reminder this morning of something I used to be very fond of as a kid. The French and their perfuming skills!

That said, this does still have that tinge of fruit-tart bitterness that seems inevitable whenever strawberry mixes with black tea. It’s not something I enjoy. But it’s almost worth it, for that sense memory the smell and the front of the sip give me.

205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 0 sec

I have such fond memories of Marco Polo. It was one of the first flavoured black teas I had. Sadly I haven’t been able to replace it as I haven’t been able to find a retailer up here that carries it.

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757 tasting notes

I was a little nervous trying this today, because of the previous experience with Butterscotch from the same company. But I decided to give it a try anyway…it’s been a few hours since I had some, and right now I am eating some yummy Victoria style cottage cheese, and I know if I had some sips right now, my taste buds might be a bit askew, so I am going to finish my snack, finish the rest of the tea, and do a second steep so I can get a better frame of mind of how I want to rate this…

Back later for more!

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Ok, back for seconds…

I can’t really pick up anything from the dry leaf, but I am a little stuffy, so maybe that is why. The liquor brewed up quite dark and mahogany in colour, and smelled a little smoky and astringent, so I wonder what the base is for the tea.

As for the taste, I am picking up the same kind of powdery taste that I got from the Butterscotch tea, but here it seems a little more vanilla or cream like, with the addition of the fruit flavour, which does seem very strawberry. As a black base, I do find it more astringent than some.

I did add some milk and sugar, and this second steeping is feeling milder than the previous one, but the berry flavour is there in the back. I may have added too much milk in this batch too. But at the end of each sip, I do get this juicy feeling over my tongue and at the back of my throat as I swallow. But I am not getting that massive pop of flavour that others have reported. Again, maybe the milk is hampering with that.

All in all, this is better than I thought, and I’m glad CrowKettle gave me a sample to try, but I know I would never buy this at full price. It’s tasty enough, but not tasty enough for me to fork over $30 for a tin.


For a similar taste profile that is smoother and less finicky, you might try Anna’s Blend from Tin Roof Teas, or probably any Teageschwender shop would have it. Hubby used to love Marco Polo, but now he prefers Anna’s and so do I.


hmmm good to know ash. thanks for sharing!

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775 tasting notes

i got this sample thanks to Sil!
i will probably try to buy some.
it reminds me of the Mariage Freres Macaron tea. something about the perfumey scent it gives off dry.
i had one cup. and then my sister came down from her room and we had another cup right away.
and then i cradled the last of the un-brewed leaves in my hands like a baby bird.

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219 tasting notes

This is another of the premium imported teas that we picked up at the local Williams Sonoma store this weekend. I wasn’t going to buy it because it also carried a premium price. However, my sweet wife insisted that I do it. OK, she twisted my arm.

I had never tried a French tea before. I realized that the leaves weren’t grown in Paris, but I still thought it would be fun to see if a French twist had been applied to the beverage.

The product came in some impressive packaging. A sturdy and glossy black carboard box protected the black metal tin inside. The tin was capped with a solid metal lid. Beneath the outer lid was a sealed peel-back inner lid with a pull ring, like vacuum-packed food items use.

When I pulled back the inner lid, I immediately smelled strawberries. It wasn’t an artifical aroma, but quite natural.

No steeping instructions came with the product so I opted to brew the black leaves for four minutes at 212 degrees. The steeped liquor was a reddish golden brown.

I could smell strawberries again as I raised the cup to my mouth. My first sip had a strong fruity taste. Again, strawberries seemed to be the dominant resident. There also was an underlying floral flavor, but it was a partner to the fruitiness, not a competitor.

As a rule, I am not crazy about fruity and floral teas. The main problem I have with them is that I feel like I am drinking perfume. I also find these teas to have a strong chemical-like aftertaste that lingers much too long for my liking.

This Marco Polo selection had none of those negative characteristics. The strawberry flavor was natural, fruity, sweet, and smooth. The floral attribute blended softly and amiably with the other flavors. The aftertaste was light, pleasing, and sweet. Bitterness was nowhere to be found. The black tea taste was so far in the background that it was hardly noticed. But, the overall body, taste, and mouth-feel of this brew left no doubt that this was a bona fide card-carrying member of the tea family.

I may have to rethink my philosophy about fruity and flowery teas. I really like this one a lot. Thanks to this Marco Polo blend, I say, oui, to trying more fruity and floral teas, plus grand oui, to tasting more French teas, and, le géant oui, to sampling more Mariage Frères teas!

Boiling 4 min, 0 sec

you definitively should ! Mariage is a giant as you mentioned and the MF compositions are always so natural, you’ll never have an artificial blend and artificial flavours.Dammann Frères is the challenger but MF flavoring is really much delicate & refined.


Hi Ysaurella!

I am very glad that I took a chance with this tea. It gives fruity and floral teas a good name. I’m going to look for other MF teas. Hopefully I’ll find some on sale. Thanks for your comment!


Well Stoo, you are a refined Southern Gentleman too!


Thanks, Bonnie! All of these fine teas are giving me class…maybe third class…but class nonetheless!

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2815 tasting notes

Thank you very much, Indigobloom for sending me a sample of this to try!

Tibetan flowers… the smell of this tea is quite beautiful! It’s a very smooth, rich black tea with a very red fruit taste. I think it is quite elegant and lovely and different. Definitely seems like something a French company would make. =) I think this is very good but I’ve been shying away a lot from floral teas in general as of late so my rating is a bit biased perhaps.

Boiling 4 min, 15 sec

I fall in and out of love with this one on alternate steeps… it’s tasty but very particular. I recommend trying it with milk!


I did have it with soymilk. ;)

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27 tasting notes

I’m such a fool! See, I placed an order with Mariage Freres recently. I ordered two of my staples (which I’ll be reviewing next) in huge quantities and then I figured I might as well throw in 100g of a new-to-me tea. I saw Marco Polo, remembered that it was MF’s most famous blend and that it got a good rating on Steepster and I was sold.
Ruby – when will you learn to look at the description first? I can be so completely stupid sometimes. I like spicy, nutty black teas. I hate fruity teas with a passion. This is a sweet, strawberry cake tea. If you know me at all, you know that’s when the tiniest violin comes in. I detest berries in any form except their original form. I hate them in yoghurt, in tea, in juice. Love them whole, though.
I won’t be rating this because it’s entirely my mistake. If a strawberry cake appeals to you, this would probably be heaven. It’s very flavoured, as are all Mariage Freres teas. As it is, I’m stuck with my 100g which I drink when I need to focus on something entirely different, like marking papers or watching a film.
Oh, Marco Polo, if only I knew then what I know now! bursts into tears


Take this as a good opportunity to start swapping :)

Ruby Woo Scarlett

Yeah I’m considering it. Thanks :)

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1627 tasting notes

So, I FINALLY have a weekend off! I had been working 18 days straight, then I had a weekend conference in Maryland… and finally this weekend came rolling around. I felt like I haven’t had a chance to relax and breathe. Now is the chance. I came home and opened my tea cupboard. :)

I received a sample of this in a swap. I’m sorry I forgot who gave this to me. Who was it? Thank you so much! This tea is absolutely delicious. I had no expectations since I didn’t know much about this tea. I only knew that it was a black tea that had a fruity and floral scent to it. I only am reading the description now. On my tongue, it is slightly sweet and tasted very much like strawberries. I LOVE STRAWBERRIES! This is so good. There is mild astringency, but with sugar it nearly went away. I would imagine this is good in milk. I bet this would taste like strawberry milk!

205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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440 tasting notes

My two hundredth tasting note! And to celebrate, I’ve saved my most eagerly anticipated sample from Indigobloom! I’ve wanted to try this one since I first read its description, and the tea didn’t disappoint me at all.

I added just a small amount of sugar and just sat back and delighted in the fruit flavours that I got. I know most of you reading this have already tried this tea already so I won’t bore you, but just . . . yeah. Definitely worthy of being my 200th tasting note. Yum.

Boiling 3 min, 0 sec



hehe!! I can’t recall how much you took, do you have enough to try it with a spot of milk? it really brings out the berry!

Tina S.

Sadly I only took a teaspoon, and it is gone. I did do multiple steeps with it though!

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47 tasting notes

SoccerMom was so kind to send me three heaping teaspoons of this along with her giveaway. Mariage Freres is rather expensive and a bit difficult to get in the US, so I wasn’t sure if I wanted to invest in a whole tin before I got to try any. So here it is, the famous Marco Polo.

It smelled wonderful, so sweet like strawberry candy, but it was the very same reason why I wasn’t sure if I would like this tea. You see, it turns out that I can be quite conservative when it comes to flavored teas, and when the tea screams out dessert, I get intimidated. But that extreme sweet scent was slightly mellowed out as I steeped it, and I have to say I see the appeal, though it may not be my absolute favorite. Mostly fruit to me, with faint floral notes, perhaps. I certainly enjoyed it, though I don’t know it will be my regular cup. I will have to try it with milk, because people seem to rave about it!


Try a 4 minute steep, 1 tsp sugar and some milk or half and half. Good bakery Strawberry shortcake :)


Sounds good! Will try tomorrow.

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181 tasting notes

This is my first Traveling Tea Box tea! And it’s very nice. The floral and fruitiness remind me of the TWG 380 tea I have, except not as overwhelming (a good thing). It’s slightly tart, and goes great with a sweet dessert. It’s perfect with French macarons—those sugary things that look like miniature hamburgers colored in food dye. This isn’t a tea I’d drink every day, but it’s phenomenal if you can find the right moment for it.

Boiling 5 min, 0 sec

Love macarons! I could see this going really well with those. Bouchon Bakery in Columbus Circle makes really good ones. :)


So that’s where the marco polo went =P

Glad you enjoyed it!

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