Mariage Freres Lily Muguet Tea : Seasonal Taste

Happy May Day!

Every year in celebration of May Day (May 1st), French tea importer Mariage Frères presents its limited edition Lily Muguet tea.  It’s offered once again this year for a limited time. The lily of the valley flavor is available in black, green, and white teas.

lily of the valley tea whitelily of the valley tea blacklily of the valley tea

“After an early-morning stroll through the vernal forests of France, Mariage Frères came back with the novel idea for a blend in which tea encounters the clean, bright fragrance of freshly picked Lily of the Valley, whose delicate aroma – vivid, sensual – enchants with the grace of magnificent legends. The flower, with its dewy sun-kissed petals, airy and tender with a satiny sheen, bestows its smooth, sweet bouquet on a green tea.–from Mariage Frères website.”

Lily Muguet is packaged in colorful lacquered tins. 100g tin/23-25€, depending on the variety. Available at Mariage Frères boutiques and mariagefreres.com.

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24 Comments

  • Andrea: I thought lilly of the valley was poisonous, so I had never actually pondered on what it would taste like… I guess the headspace wouldn’t be and you could re-constitute it’s flavor… May 1, 2013 at 9:14am Reply

    • Bela: I don’t think they tried to reconstruct the flavour. It’s like with Earl Grey and bergamot or jasmine tea with, er, jasmine: the tea is perfumed with those flowers’ scents. May 1, 2013 at 11:16am Reply

      • Bela: Sorry about ungrammatical last sentence. May 1, 2013 at 11:18am Reply

      • Victoria: I’ve tried their Lily of the Valley tea last year, and it had a very delicate green floral taste. I don’t know if they vary the flavor year to year, but it was pleasant. May 1, 2013 at 12:47pm Reply

        • Andy: Which one did you try–the white, green, or black tea? They all sound great, though I have trouble imagining how an ethereal sort of green floral flavor would harmonize with an assertive base like black tea. May 1, 2013 at 9:50pm Reply

          • Victoria: I tried white tea, I believe. A friend shared her tin with me, so I enjoyed it, but not enough to repurchase it this year. I also can’t imagine how the delicate floral flavor might stand up to the richer black tea. May 2, 2013 at 7:20am Reply

    • Victoria: I think so. The flavored tea is a fantasy on the theme anyway. May 1, 2013 at 12:45pm Reply

  • Lauren: I look forward to trying this!

    I am trying to find a new scent and am wondering if you could help me. I am looking a fragrance something ethereal and mysterious–something that would kind of remind you of the moon. Slightly melancholic but still beautiful would be ideal.

    Do you have any suggestions?

    Thank you! May 1, 2013 at 12:48pm Reply

    • Victoria: Do you have any current favorites? What do you like? Ethereal can take so many forms, from light floral like L’Artisan Mimosa Pour Moi to smoky-woody like Hermessence Vetiver Tonka. May 1, 2013 at 3:02pm Reply

      • Lauren: Thank you for your response, Victoria!

        I have always gravitated towards florals (though I am willing to experiment.) I currently wear EL Tuberose Gardenia and I think it to be a gorgeous and uplifting fragrance, but I am looking for something perhaps a bit ‘darker’ and still delicate, but somehow with a more mysterious edge to it.

        Gardenia-inspired scents have made up most of my past perfumes, but I also like violet. I wore Balenciaga Paris in the past and enjoyed it, and though I have never owned them, I have liked L’Artisan’s Drole de Rose and Love by Chloe. Of course, conceptually, I am now looking for something quite different from those perfumes–but I hope they give some idea as to what kind of notes I respond well to.

        Thank you so much for your help!

        Lauren May 3, 2013 at 10:49am Reply

        • Victoria: I would recommend trying Kenzo Amour (soft frangipani and rice) and even Kenzo Flower (more assertive, more powdery, but it would be interesting to see how it works for you), L’Artisan Traversee du Bosphore. Then for sheer white florals, how about Chanel Beige, Annick Goutal Un Matin d’Orage, L’Artisan La Chasse Aux Papillons? They all have different characters. For something darker than this, L’Artisan Seville a l’Aube, Annick Goutal Songes (I just love Annick Goutal florals in general, and I think that even the darker ones are not as difficult as some heavier, headier florals can be). May 3, 2013 at 10:55am Reply

  • Nancy A.: As expensive as their line of products are Mariage Freres is sadly untouchable for me price wise and very limited in their distribution here in the USA. However, I recently visited Dean & DeLuca (now very corporate and sold off by the original owners) and spent an enjoyable “tea scenting” with the manager and wondered if this tea will be featured. Must check it out for scent value alone! May 1, 2013 at 12:51pm Reply

    • Victoria: Dean & Deluca is a very dangerous place for me, so I avoid it. But yes, their SAs are helpful and knowledgeable, and their recommendations are always very good. May 1, 2013 at 3:01pm Reply

  • key change: You know, this tea (along with so many others) really does sound quite intriguing. But my experience has often been that flavoured teas often smell so much better than they taste–being of east Indian/Pakistani descent, I am used to having my tea quite strong–so to have something that is strongly scented but tastes rather watery and weak is quite a disappointment. Still though, if I am ever in france or a similar place, I’ll definitley try some (a girl can dream while still in debt, right?) May 1, 2013 at 1:23pm Reply

    • Victoria: Apart from teas like Earl Grey, jasmine, osmanthus, etc. I prefer plain teas. Many flavored teas are too artificial for my tastes. Mariage Freres and Le Palais des Thes make good flavors, but if I’m forced to choose, I would pick their unflavored teas.

      And I’m with you on masala chai! There is nothing like it. But it’s in a category of its own for me. May 1, 2013 at 2:57pm Reply

      • Bernadette: There is a tea which tastes and smells like some sort of heavenly, undefinable flower but is NOT SCENTED. This is the amazing thing, the tea is naturally aromatic. It is an oolong from Taiwan and is called High Mountain Tea and grows at 1,000 meter elevation. If you can get a high grade quality it is a tea to die for. I think you can get it through Ten Ren teas. They are the best source, unlike fancy delicatessens, theirs don’t sit in the tea drums for ages as this tea is very costly. I’m a teatotaler and am always on the search for unusual teas, and wanted to let you know about this tea delight. May 2, 2013 at 12:59am Reply

        • Victoria: Thank you very much, Bernadette! When I get to a Ten Ren shop, I will look for it. Taiwan oolongs are among my favorite teas. One time I worked on a study of their composition and discovered that they naturally share similar aromatic compounds with flowers like jasmine. May 2, 2013 at 7:27am Reply

  • Shelley: I was in Paris this time last, and saw how popular Lilies of the Valley were. After we ate dinner, the waiter handed me the flower, which I kept in a glass, in our room. Even the pastries were decorated with icing, in the shape of the flower. I shopped in Mariage Freres’ tea section, and was amazed at the selection.. It was absolutely wonderful. Sigh. May 1, 2013 at 9:01pm Reply

    • Victoria: Oh, that sounds wonderful! The last time I was in Paris for May Day was a few years ago, and your comment brought back so many nice memories. Makes me want to go back. May 2, 2013 at 7:18am Reply

  • Andy: Sounds lovely! As others have commented, their teas are a bit hard to come by here in the US, but that doesn’t stop me from perusing the MF website…

    Anyway, this was one that I’ve been curious about. What did you think of this one? May 1, 2013 at 9:53pm Reply

    • Victoria: Their flavored teas are excellent, but they are expensive. I keep wanting to go to their store in Paris and check out the selection there. In NYC and Brussels, the offerings are limited to some of their most popular flavored teas.

      Overall, Muguet is good, but definitely more expensive than I would be prepared to pay for it. May 2, 2013 at 7:25am Reply

  • emily: Hi Victoria, I just sent my perfume loving neice to your site as she is a fragrance diva – so cute she is! I know you will get along beautifully 😉

    I live in the Boston area and write about fragrances for a local newspaper. Recently, I wrote about the comfort of perfume. You can read it here in my blog: http://alovelyinconsequence.blogspot.com/2013/04/the-comfort-of-perfume.html

    I have one terrible pain in my heart right now: Why oh why is Carnal Flower so expensive???? It is pure catnip to me – I could roll around in a puddle of it! I wish I could get some! Do you know of any cheaper way to procur it?

    Thank you and I just love reading everything you write, perfume, tea, ect….so inspiring! May 2, 2013 at 6:39am Reply

    • Victoria: Thank you, Emily! I’m going to read your article. Perfume comfort is something I relate to myself.

      Ah, don’t mention the price of Carnal Flower. It’s obscene, but in this case, completely worth it for me. Good thing, you only need a small amount of perfume to be scented for the whole day. May 2, 2013 at 7:28am Reply

  • mucuna: I just tried the Lily of the Valley Black tea by Mariage Freres. It is more grounded compared to the White tea that I got last year. If Muguet the Blanc is heaven, Muguet the Noir is earth. I love to try the vert and see how it is like.
    I also got the Ylang Ylang black tea, more subtle, but fruity. I still have to try the Cannele tea.
    The Summer tea in glass collection got a new one coming out. I will ask when it is going to be sold online. Violetta: black tea with white blossoms and real violets. May 15, 2013 at 12:27am Reply

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