Leaf Type: Black
Where to Buy: Joy’s Teaspoon
The embodiment of the finest English tea.
In 1833, Earl Grey, the Earl of Howick Hall, at that time British Prime Minister, suspended the price monopoly which the East India Company had over the tea trade with China. The originally pure Chinese tea was lightly flavored with bergamot oil. This additional fragrance, provided by the Chinese, was intended to protect the tea from the taste of mold and tar which could arise from the long voyage at sea to royal England. Now, you’ve learned a little something!
Ingredients: black tea, natural bergamot flavoring
I can’t begin to describe the JOY that comes over me when I am offered an opportunity to taste an Earl Grey tea that I’ve not yet tried. I get almost giddy and sometimes I even start dancing the happy dance. Yes, I love Earl Grey that much.
For some, Earl Grey may not be that incredible because, as the saying goes “Earl Grey Teas are like…” well, never mind, I probably shouldn’t say that here. But, basically, everyone (that is, nearly every tea company out there) has got at least one Earl Grey tea. Some of them have several!
But, after having tried so many Earl Grey teas, I have learned that not all Earl Grey teas are created equal. And, interestingly enough, after trying so many Earl Grey teas, I have yet to grow tired of trying one that is new to me.
This Earl Grey from Joy’s Teaspoon is delightful. It has a nice balance between black tea and bergamot. The bergamot flavoring is strong, but it does not oppress the delicious black tea base. It is a brisk, flavorful Earl Grey that takes well to the addition of milk and honey – if you want it – but also tastes wonderful without it.
The bergamot here tastes like bright, tangy orange with just a hint of a floral quality. It doesn’t taste overdone nor does it have that cheap perfume kind of taste to it. I know that I’ve said this before, but this is one of the very best Earl Grey teas that I’ve encountered.
Very little astringency to this cup, which is surprising, because I’ve come to expect a little more from Earl Grey. It’s a nice surprise, though, and I think it is one of the main reasons why I am finding this Earl Grey to be so remarkable. There is no bitterness, just a clean, vibrant taste of black tea and bergamot.
This is a great example of the classic Earl Grey, one that Earl Grey aficionados would want to not only try, but probably adopt as one of their tea cupboard staples. As this is the first tea that I’ve tried from Joy’s Teaspoon, I’d say it’s a very encouraging sign of what I have to look forward to from this new company! Well done!