This is one of my Le Palais des Thés set that I have yet to try. They keep very mum as to the ingredients in this one, and the tea in the tube had a weird, medicinal scent that wasn’t very appealing, but it seemed to be a black tea and it was untried, so I went for it. As it was brewing I came here and saw that duh, this “Monk’s Tea” blend is the same as all the other French/European Monk’s Blend teas I’ve tried. Bergamot, jasmine, vanilla. Brewed up it even smells identical to both Thé au Tibet by Mariage Freres and my random Polish Mnichów tea (also translates to Monk’s Blend). I love the idea of bergamot, jasmine and vanilla, but it almost never works out for me for some reason. I think it’s mainly because I thought I would like vanilla and jasmine together but it just doesn’t work on my palate. I mean, I like these teas ok, but I thought that this blend would be a favorite to me and it just isn’t.
Like those other teas, this is a black-green blend, which I found out after brewing by looking at the spent leaves. I did brew this one at the recommended time and temp on the tube. As I mentioned before, when I smell the brewed tea on this one it smelled like a Monk’s blend tea, kind of like a red fruits tea smells like that blend. The balance of flavors in this one is pretty good, although it too suffers from some kind of weird bitterness on my tongue that is probably not dependant on steeping temp (I got the same thing at lower temps in the other teas) and I think is a result of my dislike of the vanilla/jasmine combo. It’s mitigated by the bergamot here, and so is more drinkable to me, but it’s definitely not my favorite. Right now this seems so similar to the other two teas, and I haven’t had those teas in so long, that I can’t figure out how it is distinct. A quick steep of the other two to taste the difference is in order this morning, I think.
My conclusions are that they are all very similar but this is probably my least favorite of the three. Not in a huge way, but I think the jasmine and vanilla combo is stronger in this one than the other two, that is the flavor combo I like least.