Earl Grey Tea
Earl Grey Tea is one of the world’s legendary teas. The headiness of the lemony Bergamot scent and flavor has been the darling the tea world since the 1820’s. It is cited many places that it is the second most popular tea in the world, right after English Breakfast tea. It was one of 5 black teas we saw offered during our visit to the Victoria & Albert Museum in London.
Unlike any other citrus flavoring, it is this lemony touch of the Bergamot, which is an orange native to Calabria, Italy which sets it apart from other teas. And while it is not everyone’s cup of tea (sorry), if you are an Earl Grey fan, ours will one of the best you have ever tasted
Earl Grey Tea is enjoyed the world over by real people who appreciate its depth of character, sweet citrus notes, and palate cleansing finish. The tea is however also enjoyed by people who are not real in any way, other than on the printed page or silver screen. Perhaps more than any other tea, Earl Grey appears to have been the beverage of choice for many fictitious characters. From James Bond, to Star Trek’s Captain Jean-Luc Picard (“Earl Grey…hot”), to Sir Leigh Teabing of the DaVinci code, Earl Grey has a storied history itself, down to the many legends surrounding it’s initial blending.
In the real world, Earl Grey is the daily favourite tea of Queen Elizabeth II. A cup every morning is how she starts her royal day. She also never travels abroad without a large supply of Earl Grey, it is reported.
Bergamot flavored tea can be traced in to the 1820’s, but the exact story of its creation has been lost to history, even though several tea house claim to have blended it first during the 1820’s and 1850’s. Early advertisements for an Earl Grey or “Grey Tea”, can be found placed by Charlton & Co. in the 1880s. There are other tea companies, like Jackson’s, which also take credit for it’s first blending.
The Earl Grey name is attributed to The 2nd Earl Grey, British Prime Minister in the 1830s. Lord Grey supposedly received a bergamot flavored tea as a diplomatic gift. This is where the story gets murky since one source says it was for saving a Chinese noble’s son from drowning in 1803 by one of his entourage. The problem, is that The Earl never visited China and the bergamot doesn’t grow there.
But according to the Grey family, the tea was in fact blended for them to offset the mineral taste of the local water at Howick Hall, in Northumberland, which is the seat of the family. You can choose whichever story you feel makes the most sense. We just like drinking it. It is Rick’s favorite tea and has been drinking it himself for over 50 years.
Hot Tea Steeping Instructions: Put 1 heaping teaspoon of loose tea for each 8oz of water in your tea cup or teapot. Using a tea infuser to hold the tea makes it easier. Pour boiling water over the tea. Steep for 3 to 5 minutes.
Iced Tea Instructions: For a Liter or quart use 2 heaping Tbsp. of loose tea into teapot. Pour 1 1/4 cup boiled water on tea. Steep 3 to 5 min. Strain tea into pitcher, adding water and/or ice to complete the liter or quart. Garnish & sweeten to taste.
Contains: Black tea, Cornflower petals, Natural flavors.