The Earl of Harlem Ambessa Tea from Harney & Sons


Tea Information:

Leaf Type:  Black

Where to Buy:  Harney & Sons

Tea Description:

This new take on an old classic adds an air of mystery to the traditional Earl Grey. Citrusy layers, bergamot and floral aromas mingle with lingering smoky base notes for a rich and fragrant finish.

Learn more about this tea here.

Taster’s Review:

Of the four teas in the new Ambessa Tea Line from Harney & Sons, you know that the one I had to try was this:  The Earl of Harlem!  I do love Earl Grey, and I was excited to try chef Marcus Samuelsson’s interpretation of one of my favorite teas, especially after reading a comment from one of our readers who suggested that this one be the next from the Ambessa Tea line that I try.

It should come as no big surprise to my readers that the one big drawback to this new line of teas is that they are only available in sachet form.  I am not a big fan of Harney & Sons teas in sachet form, as I have noticed a difference in taste between the teas packaged in sachets versus the same tea in loose leaf form (most notably – the Hot Cinnamon Spice).

That complaint aside, I am really enjoying this Earl of Harlem tea!  The description above describes the base of this tea as a smoky tea base, and while it does have a smoky profile, I appreciate that it is not an overwhelming smoky note.  It’s a softer smoky taste that doesn’t compete with the citrus-y bergamot.

I like that the bergamot is strong here, but not overdone.  It has a pleasant tangy, fruity note to it, with hints of floral tones in the background … without tasting perfume-ish.  The smoky tones of the black tea base give this a more masculine character, and I get the “Earl of Harlem” connection – or at least, I get an interpretation of it – as it evokes thoughts of a smoky jazz club in the 20’s and 30’s in Harlem.

The tea has a very smooth, compelling flavor.  The black tea is rich, earthy, and possesses a gentle, smoky tone.  The bergamot is has a tart, zesty flavor with a hint of exotic sweetness.  Whispers of floral tones drift off in the background.  A really delightful spin on my beloved Earl Grey – Chef Samuelsson does my suave gentleman proud with this tea.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *