|"Marco Polo by Mariage Frères is every bit as good as you've heard it is. Seriously."|
“Oh, hello Marco. My friends speak so highly of you, and I have to admit that I’m really excited to finally get acquainted with you myself. You have such a reputation! Hey, is it hot in here? No? Well, that’s strange because you’ve been steeping in my mind all day.”
And that’s when Marco, if I weren’t talking about a type of tea, would excuse himself and then promptly escape out the bathroom window. Thankfully, the only Marco in my life is Marco Polo an exotic and intriguing tea from the famous Paris based teahouse Mariage Frères. A dear friend told me that I had to try this tea because it would be perfect for me, so in a way Marco Polo and I were set up.
Mariage Frères was established in 1854. I think that it only stands to reason that with 157 years of experience and 500 varieties of tea, they know a thing or two about how to make a fine tea. However, what they know about Marco Polo they’re not divulging. The mysterious blend of Chinese and Tibetan fruit and flowers mixed with black tea to create this captivating enigma are a closely guarded secret.
The leaves have an enchanting and puzzling scent, and there are pretty red flecks (flowers?) mingling with the black tea. I smell fruit and flowers, but mostly fruit. The liquor is a distinct copper color with an aroma that’s fruity and intoxicating. I just want to close my eyes and breath it in. At first sip, I taste fruit but I can’t for the life of me tell you what kind… berries of some sort would be my best guess. The fruit flavor develops into a brisk, full body. The finish is sweet and clean. I’m in love with the lingering sweetness of this tea. I brewed this beautiful mystery at 212 degrees for 3 minutes, and I was able to get three flavorful steeps from the leaves.
Mariage Frères teas can be a little tricky to find stateside, but I promise you that Marco Polo is worth the search and the extra cash. I sometimes find myself disappointed by much lauded teas because they often can’t measure up to the hype. Marco Polo is not one of those teas. I’m going to keep this one out on the kitchen counter for quick accessibility.
I admit to having an insatiable lust for tea, but please rest assured that it’s not in a creepy anthropomorphized way. I’m just a normal(ish), tea-obsessed gal forever searching for a new tea to drink in.
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