Leaf Type: Black
Where to Buy: Whittard of Chelsea 1886
Earl Grey has become a defining flavor of Britain, distinguished by its fragrant taste. Traditionally an afternoon tea, our customers wanted a version strong enough for breakfast. So we created a fine blend of black tea with malty Assam, crisp Ceylon and mellow Kenyan. It is a vigorous blend with a beautiful, delicate bergamot taste.
Learn more about this tea here.
There is just something about Earl Grey that … when I encounter a new-to-me Earl Grey (one that I’ve not yet tried), I get all giddy, quite unlike any other flavor of tea. There’s just something about that bergamot that makes me happy.
Occasionally, I’ve been disappointed. Occasionally, I’ll come across one that just doesn’t do the name “Earl Grey” justice. But it is a rare occasion, indeed, and fortunately, today is not such a rare occasion. This Breakfast Earl Grey from Whittard of Chelsea 1886 is lovely!
The aroma is beautiful – although, I must admit that it did scare me just a bit. It is a strong bergamot fragrance, but there is just a hint of … something … there that made it smell a bit more like perfume than like tea. It scared me momentarily, but once the tea was brewed, that worry was over. The aroma of the dry leaf is a tad perfume-y, but the brewed tea smells much more like a proper Earl Grey. Sweet, bergamot-y (which is much now much lighter here in the brewed tea), and possessing a pleasing earthiness from the black tea base.
The black tea base of this Earl Grey is a blend of Assam, Ceylon and Kenyan tea. I know I’ve tasted a lot of Earl Grey teas, and I can’t possibly be expected to remember all the Earl Grey bases I’ve tried up until now (can I? … hope not, because I can’t!) but I don’t remember a blend of these three particular teas used as a base for an Earl Grey. The result is a robust background with malty intonations and a really rich, solid, well-rounded flavor.
The bergamot is rather soft in the presence of this powerful black tea base, but I still find it rather pleasant. Usually, I like my bergamot bold and in-your-face, but, I have also quite enjoyed the softer side of bergamot on occasion. I find that with these particular teas, the citrus-y tones are much more bright and sweet … it’s almost juicy!
There is much more of a fruit note than an “exotic” note, if that makes sense. Yes, I’m aware that bergamot IS a fruit, so indeed it should not be unusual that it actually tastes like fruit, but, bergamot is quite unlike any other fruit that flavors teas that I’ve encountered. Here, it is mellowed somewhat, allowing the distinct fruit tones to express themselves in a different way. As I continue to sip, I notice some floral notes begin to reveal themselves … a taste that becomes more dominate as I reach mid-cup.
What a lovely bergamot experience I’m having with this Breakfast Earl Grey. This is one that all Earl Grey lovers out there should try!