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Saturday, December 11, 2010

12 Days of Christmas: Mariage Frères Tea

It might be a little late to give the third of my 12 days of Christmas as a gift, but truthfully, it's something you'll want to keep for yourself anyway! (And it's a great way to spend some of that Christmas money you receive.) Mariage Frères tea is quite simply some of the best tea I've had anywhere--and I've had a lot of tea! (I'm one of those rare people who don't like coffee, but I do drink tea every day.)

I discovered Mariage Frères when living in France. It was recommended to me by one of the homestay "moms" that hosted a few of our students. Fortunately, she recommended it right before our last trip to Paris, so my daughter and I made the trek to the small store on Rue du Bourg-Tibourg, not far from the Hôtel de Ville. I almost missed the unassuming exterior of this 150-year-old tea shop tucked away on a small street.

But I was flabbergasted by the over 500 types of teas inside.

And surprisingly (for Paris), the staff was friendly and helpful. I knew that I wanted the Éros blend, as it had been recommended by several people, but I wanted another type to bring home. I asked the clerk, and he said that the Marco Polo blend was the house blend. I went for that one. Both were flavorful, and neither become bitter after brewing too long (which some cheaper teas do). Both were flowery in flavor, which isn't usually my favorite, but I absolutely loved the Éros blend.

So, if you happen to receive a trip to Paris as a Christmas present, make sure visit Mariage Frères. If you're not so lucky (like me), you can finally order this impressive tea from Dean & Deluca. (It used to only be available from France.) It's not inexpensive, but you won't be disappointed.

**This post has been written of my own accord because I like the product. I have had no contact with Mariage Frères, and they have offered me nothing in return for reviewing this product.

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Victoria Wheeler December 12, 2010 at 9:15 AM  

I have been debating for a long while replenishing my "Eros" supply. It is absolutely worth the $20, because it's one of the best teas I've ever had. And, for me, it's a reminder of Strasbourg. I just promised myself I have to finish some of my other teas before I'm allowed to have new ones...

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