French Vanilla Assam

Tea type
Black Tea
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Creamy, Vanilla, Caramel, Cream
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Edit tea info Last updated by Southern Boy Teas
Average preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 45 sec 3 g 11 oz / 331 ml

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67 Tasting Notes View all

  • “It’s not even 9 AM and I’ve started a sponge for bread baking, cleaned out the fridge and got dinner in the crockpot. To reward myself I made some cinnamon toast (using the last of my old homemade...” Read full tasting note
  • “Yay! This arrived today! and OMG it is indeed De – li – cious! It tastes to me like someone dropped a vanilla bean into my teapot while this infused. It’s super vanilla-y and so completely...” Read full tasting note
  • “After two resounding busts from earlier this morning, this tea had better be good! Or I might cry :( Dry tea smells sweet and perhaps of vanilla. A good start. Steeped, I’m getting a sweet, dark,...” Read full tasting note
  • “And that, as they say, is that. I’ve had a number of cups of this tea and I just am not in love with it the way I had hoped, or even that I was in the beginning. I gave the remains to a vanilla...” Read full tasting note

From 52teas

Here’s an amazing malty Assam tea blended with organic vanilla bean pieces, cornflowers and natural French Vanilla flavors.

I have just three words for this:

De – li – cious!

About 52teas View company

At, you will find unique, hand-blended artisan loose leaf teas: a new limited edition creation every week of the year. We pride ourselves on offering truly unique, one-of-a-kind tea blends that you won’t find anywhere else.

67 Tasting Notes

863 tasting notes

It’s not even 9 AM and I’ve started a sponge for bread baking, cleaned out the fridge and got dinner in the crockpot. To reward myself I made some cinnamon toast (using the last of my old homemade loaf) and had this tea to go with.

Steeped: 1.5 tsp. in 10 oz. water/milk with some sugar at the below parameters.

The custard/vanilla note is as present as ever. As in previous notes, it also still reminds me of coffee (yum!) since I think french vanilla is a common coffee flavoring. Still really well balanced, still flavorful and this is a blend I’ve had around for a while. I love when teas age well, because I am a SLOW tea drinker!

I think it’s an excellent substitute for coffee in the morning (if you like that kind of thing).

Boiling 4 min, 30 sec

Wow! Want to come over to my house? ;-)


yup, what veronica said.

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4843 tasting notes

Yay! This arrived today! and OMG it is indeed De – li – cious! It tastes to me like someone dropped a vanilla bean into my teapot while this infused. It’s super vanilla-y and so completely yummy.

Certainly not your run of the mill vanilla tea! Not by a long shot!


I’d love to try this one, too! :P


It sounds so good…If I hadn’t just odered Vanilla Comoro from Harney’s, I woulda got this. Although it’s been fix days and Harneys still hasn’t shipped my order which is making me mad since the tea is in stock! Frank wouldn’t do me wrong like that… : )


I wonder if it isn’t shipped or just hasn’t arrived? I know my status was showing still unshipped several times and the tea was at my door! I usually order on Wednesday afternoon and my tea arrives on Saturday just after lunch.


Well, my credit card hasn’t been charged either. I can see that the funds seem to be held in reserve, but I assume they’ll take their money for real before they ship. I’m pretty disappointed, honestly.

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6079 tasting notes

After two resounding busts from earlier this morning, this tea had better be good! Or I might cry :(

Dry tea smells sweet and perhaps of vanilla. A good start. Steeped, I’m getting a sweet, dark, malty smell. Not what I was expecting, but still good so far…

Hmmm, it’s kind of weak. I used a slightly heaping tsp, but maybe didn’t steep it long enough. Tea ball is back in for a minute or so…

Oook. I’m not getting vanilla, really… I’m almost getting a bit of a soapy flavour, actually. The black tea is ok, a touch astringent at the end of the sip, but nothing worrisome. I really can’t see why people like this one…. Nothing special at all. Boo for another tea bust… (What am I doing wrong, people?!)

ETA: Oops, forgot to thank Amanda for this one!!

185 °F / 85 °C 3 min, 15 sec

All I can think of is either it just isn’t good OR maybe its how you steep. Do you happen to have a mesh strainer of any kind? Like for straining veggies or something? Not those big plastic ones but the small hand held metal kind? Maybe let the tea leaves loose in your cup, pot, etc and strain them after the steep? Just an idea – don’t know if it will work.


I agree…most loose tea’s really need room. A tea ball is so confined that you are not going to get the most out of your tea steep. Just my opinion but I’ve been trying to follow my wiser steepsters in learning how to brew different tea’s and my learning curve is improving from the days when I just plunked some tea in a pot of boiling water and let it sit 10 minutes until it was a bitter mass. Yuk!


I’ve found teaballs don’t work out well for me either


I tried a tea ball and found it tiresome to operate. I have one of those infuser things that sits in my cup. It’s much easier to deal with. Of course I have a really big tea mug now so I needed a bigger infuser. Perhaps it’s the water. How are you heating your water up? I’m no tea guru, but I’ve been stalking the forums for a while now and water seems to be a big factor in good tea.


Assam needs a full boil to achieve a well-rounded flavor. Also, I don’t recommend steeping it too long as it will become bitter. This is actually one of my favorite teas from 52Teas. I also do not recommend a tea ball … they just don’t do a tea justice, in my opinion.


Thanks for all the suggestions, everyone! The tea ball in question is a mesh one like the ones DavidsTea offers; it’s reasonably large and I thought it would be ok, as it usually is for everything except oolongs (and it’s just fine for my beloved Banana Oolong, even though it’s crammed full when the leaves expand), but perhaps I should give these teas a shot in my steeping basket at home, where the leaves have more room.

LiberTEAS – If you say assam needs to be steeped in boiling water, I think water temperature would be my biggest problem here! You probably noticed I went with a nice low temperature thanks for my many recent over-steeps, and I guess I did it with a tea I shouldn’t have! I didn’t oversteep it this time though :D (But if the trade-off is lack of flavour, I’m not sure that’s so great…!) So it looks like this tea will be yet another added to the ‘needs second attempt, different parameters’ list :)


What helps me…I have 3 yes three little charts that list brewing temps and times for different types of tea on the back of my tea cupboard. I refer to them all the time. I have memory problems so I have to do this. No way could I just brew tea! Might be good to go online and print a chart from The Art of Tea or just google tea brewing charts.


Thanks Bonnie! That might be useful :) I know the general parameters for each type of tea, but some seem to be more flexible than others. I’ll take a look.

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709 tasting notes

And that, as they say, is that. I’ve had a number of cups of this tea and I just am not in love with it the way I had hoped, or even that I was in the beginning. I gave the remains to a vanilla loving coworker and have freed myself of guilt.

When I look for a vanilla tea, I want a caramel sort of vanilla. I found this to be a coconut sort of vanilla. (I don’t know if I am the only one but I find strong vanilla smells and taste to be coconut-esque, and I don’t like coconut). Rather than force myself to like it, I’ve decided (quite rightly, I think!) to re-gift it to someone else who might enjoy it more. I wish I weren’t so prone to falling out of love with teas.. : (


coconut sort of vanilla! That’s it! That’s exactly the way to describe what I’m looking for in a vanilla tea. I can’t believe it never occurred to me before. That also explains why a really good vanilla black can remind me of sweets that have nothing at all to do with vanilla. Now if this one only hadn’t been Assam based…


I’m glad I could help you name your tea desires! I’m actually not all that fond because of the coconut associations I have always had with it, but sometimes I get one that I like. Good luck finding your own non-Assam coconut sort of vanilla! : )


I want to try this tea sooo badly. I will eventually.


Queen of Tarts’ swap list says she has some up for grabs, Tabby. ( I already gave mine away, otherwise I’d send some your way since post is back up today (yay post!)

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160 tasting notes

This morning I woke up early, for no reason in particular. Since I was up I decided to make myself an early breakfast and a nice big cup of tea. My tea of chioce was this one (yes… I still have some left from my 12 days of Christmas boxes… In my defense, I did have to boxes…). Some people (Angrboda in particular) loved this one, I enjoyed it, but definitely not loved it).

I brewed it nice and strong and added some of my home made latte mix (delicious if I may say so myself…). Since this was the second envelope of it that I opened I got the chance to compare them. There was more flowers in this one, and even though it has sat around a while, I got a pretty strong vanilla smell.

The tea was dark and creamy, and once I added the home made latte mix is was a pretty enjoyable cup of tea! No sparks are flying and no hearts are floating around the room, but I am happy with how this brew turned out.

Right after I drank it, it was time for ice skating training. Yes, even after not being able to walk for a few days, I decided to go back and train once more. I did more than last time, so I am probably am going to be even more sore than last week, but it is really worth it. I feel so free on the ice. Ice skating and tea all in one morning and doggy and boyfriend in the afternoon. I loved this Satrday!


Omnomnom vanilla! The opinions appear to be very divided on it though.


I love Assams. I’ll have to try this one.

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557 tasting notes

Mmmm, this one is really well balanced with the vanilla, creamy smooth delicious :-)
I used up my last bit of this one tonight but it was so good.

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576 tasting notes

I’m not sure about this one, honestly. Yes, it’s uber vanilla – which I always like – but there is a hint of flavor there I don’t care for. Now it’s possible that it’s an ice-creamy flavor. Since I can’t eat ice cream, whenever I taste anything like it my body imagines what will happen when I do eat ice cream (serious, serious chest, throat and mouth pain). So maybe that bias is constricting my enjoyment. But I don’t think I can really enjoy it. So I’m not going to rate it, I don’t think it would be fair to rate it.

I think I’ll sell it on tea trade so I can try to make some $$ back for my tea budget this month!


I could see a quasi-ice cream flavour. I get a vanilla flavour so strong sometimes that it reminds me of coconut (which I do NOT like). It’s a fine line… : )


yeah, i know what you mean… and yes, agreed on the coconut. I DO like coconut, but not when I’m opting for vanilla. :)


Could it be the hazelnut? Not sure why you think it wouldn’t be fair to rate it. If you don’t like it, you don’t like it.


Maybe it is the hazelnut… I just don’t want to rate something that I don’t like because I’m potentially biased against the flavor, thanks to my body thinking it will succumb to an allergic reaction…


Didn’t even know there was Hazelnut in it! D’oh..

RachanaC (Rachel)-iHeartTeas

I didn’t see hazelnut on the ingredients list. However, maybe it falls under the “flavors” category.

Southern Boy Teas

I have no idea where the hazelnut thing came from. There are no elements of hazelnut in the blend.


@Frank, French Vanilla = vanilla + a hint of hazelnut

Southern Boy Teas

Sorry, Cofftea.. From Wikipedia: “The term French vanilla is often used to designate preparations that have a strong vanilla aroma, and contain vanilla grains. The name originates from the French style of making ice cream custard base with vanilla pods, cream, and egg yolks. Inclusion of vanilla varietals from any of the former or current French dependencies noted for their exports may in fact be a part of the flavoring, though it may often be coincidental. Alternatively, French vanilla is taken to refer to a vanilla-custard flavor.15 Syrup labeled as French vanilla may include custard, caramel or butterscotch flavors in addition to vanilla.”


Oh good, I didn’t miss it…LOL


@52teas – thanks for the clarification. It’s NOT hazelnut but the vanilla-custard flavor. That is what I’m not exactly feeling. Thank you for clearing that up! Why I thought they tasted the same I don’t know…
@Cofftea – you learn something new everyday! :)


Hm well at least I’m not the only one wrong. Every single person I’ve talked to when the convo comes up (Steepsterites, bakers, baristas, etc) has said that. Can’t blame me from believing a huge group of people lol.

Southern Boy Teas

Sure I can. I blame you. It’s all your fault. :P

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1220 tasting notes

So when I had this in the 12 days of Christmas last year, I didn’t care for it at all. I bought up a bunch of 52teas stuff from KeenTeaThyme and some of hers was in there. I figured if it’s still going to taste good, it will now with having an electric kettle. And it worked out! I actually kind of enjoyed it, but it’s still not my favorite vanilla. Of course it’d be hard to take the place of Vanille des Iles.

It’s alright, I like the Assam, and the vanilla did finally come through for me. But I wouldn’t want it beyond this honestly.


Wow, and here I love this one. Makes me wonder what Vanille des Iles is all about. Will need to order eventually. Enabler.


Vanilla frosting, I love it so much. When I run out it’s going to be sad.

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1353 tasting notes

I was hoping this one would be in the box! I’ve been on a bit of a vanilla quest since I had that awesome vanilla Nilgiri from Chi of Tea, but I never tried this one before. First of all, it came out before my interest in something vanilla flavoured really took off. Second, I was a bit concerned about the Assam base. I’m rather ambivalent when it comes to Assam, you see. When done right they can be very pleasant, but when done wrong… It’s not a pretty picture.

More and more though, I became interested in trying this one after all, Assam base be damned, but of course by then it was much too late. So yeah, I was putting some hope into this Christmas box! I know Frank is reblending everything in the box for sale, but as I’m way ahead of you as I’m writing this and will be in England by the time the rest of you get to opening this one and it becomes available on the site… If I like this one, I’ll just have to cross my fingers and hope there’s still some available when we get home.

IF I enjoy it.

The aroma of the leaves were strongly vanilla-y and also very Assam-y. All malty and strong and stuff. It seemed an even mix of the two aromas. After steeping, it’s mostly vanilla, and it’s a creamy sort of caramel-y vanilla. It’s almost honeyed. I think it’s the sweet, malty note in Assam and the sweetness of the vanilla that are interacting to create this extremely candy-y note. The aroma is definitely a win. (Could it be…?)

In the flavour, I’m not getting an overwhelming vanilla note. At first it’s generally clean Assam, and then the vanilla comes swooping in on the aftertaste, practically filling my mouth with vanilla. Oh. Oh dear. I was afraid this would happen. I do so hope that when I get back from England there will still be some available of this. This is exactly what I want from a vanilla flavoured tea. It’s my perfect vanilla black, and it’s limited edition. How bloody typical!


I thought it might be your ideal vanilla black! You might even have preferred the original blend, as I found this one much more appealing than the first batch


I forgot to check the website for it before we went to England, so I’ve spent the last week with my fingers crossed that it wouldn’t have sold out. Since it didn’t, I’m so buying some!


When I drank my first vanilla black cuppa I was overwhelmed. I drank about 2 Oz of it in short time period and kinda got bored with it. After reading your note it made me think of those good sipping moments. I’m tempted to give it a spin again :)


This one is definitely my favorite of the box. The first batch was better than the second.


kOmpir, the first vanilla flavoured black I ever had was largely underwhelming, so I’m not sure what possessed me to ever try the second one. These days I find it’s a must-have flavour, so I keep trying almost anything that comes across. I think it was the popularity of the H&S Vanilla Comoro here on Steepster that kept me at it. Funnily enough, that one didn’t appeal to me as much as it did to most of the others.

LiberTeas, I’ve ordered two more pouches of it. :) Shame I couldn’t have tried the first round. That’s what I get out of being such a wuss about the base. :)

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1792 tasting notes

I’ve been drinking this one so much over the past few days that I dreamt about it last night. In my dream, I was in a swanky tea shop where this tea was encased in a beautiful jewelry-style box. The box had elegant golden legs on it and the tea itself was in a bottom drawer, while information on the tea, and maybe even a tea ball, was found underneath the lid. Definitely meant as a gift, and I checked on the bottom of the box and it was $23.95.

The best part was next to it there was another tea: white chocolate, macadamia, and coconut (a black tea, most likely). Frank, could you pretty please make this?

Back to the French Vanilla Assam. Love the maltiness combined with the warm, velvety vanilla. It’s a rich vanilla bean explosion of awesomeness. I’m upping my rating.


Ahahaha, what a dream!! And… so expensive! :P

Also – white chocolate, macadamia, and coconut?! HECK YES! Please!!!


Your dream tea sounds delicious! I agree, Frank, this is an excellent idea!!!


Incendiare – have you had Mulberry Magic from DavidsTea?? Just occurred to me that it kind of tastes white chocolatey, with macadamia nuts. I think if it was mixed with a coconut black, that might make a very, very delicious drink!


I don’t, but I’ve been eyeing that one every time I visit the website. But if Frank doesn’t make my dream come true then you’re right, it’ll be down to some serious experimentation. :D

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