Here's my review of Lie de Thé (alt + 0233 = é) A dark, oxidized tea stain brown.
I ordered a 30ml bottle of this when I also ordered a sample of Pelikan Edelstein Smoky Quartz. I asked about 20 different people at work if they could notice the difference between the two. They could not. I really wish I'd ordered the largest bottle of this. As soon as I'm low, I'll definitely order the largest bottle of this I can.
Honestly, I really liked Pelikan smoky quartz. But they have their heads so far up their own bums that the $30 for 50ml (Honestly I don't even think my bottles of pilot iroshizuku are worth $30/bottle, even with the nigh-perfect bottle) just blew my mind. I bought a sample of it and a 30ml BOTTLE of Lie de Thé for $8. And when you are putting it down in as fine a line as anything, even a 1.1 italic does, you can't clearly tell a difference, the value proposition of smoky quartz just fell through the floor.
Enter the new champion. Lie de Thé. I adore brown inks. They feel arcane. Simple. Valuable. In the pictures are a Lamy F, B, and 1.1 stub. But this ink just oozes simple beauty. it shades heavily. No water resistance. It just does the one thing it aims to do, emulate the feeling of writing a letter to someone in Victorian times.
The ink is just so gorgeous. It shades heavily. No sheen. It works well on garbage paper without much feathering or any drama. Flow is on the wet side of neutral (no noodlers dark matter) and is simply happy to flow in every single pen I try it in (shown are Lamy F, B, and 1.1 stub)
No real feathering or bleed on bad paper.
Mild water resistance. You will be able to see shadows of the writing, but nothing serious.
If you are interested in smoky quartz, in the wettest pens, it will have a TAD more black or grey vs this. But to be frank, try a 30ml bottle of Lie de Thé. If you like it, get a bottle of smoky quartz.
Lie de Thé is one of the greatest values in brown inks ever made. I love brown, and this is a staple in my collection. As long as I have Lie de Thé, I don't need to spend such an absurd amount on Pelikan's bizarrely overpriced special editions.
I really wish ink makers would realize that ink is not the product that should be sold for such a premium.