Empire Tea Services
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Recent Tasting Notes
When you go to bed at 11:00 and wake at 12:00, thinking it is morning, you know you are in trouble. Help me Earl Grey, you’re my only hope. The force is strong with this one. Bergamot haters beware. This is not for you. Lalith at Empire Tea Services likes his EG in your face. The addition of orange peel gives a twist that makes it unlike any other companies EG I have tried.
I finally got brave today. I opened the bag of lavender gmathis sent me. I have learned to love jasmine. I’ve grown quite fond of rose when it is well done (Nina’s Mmmmm). I find the floral notes of oolong comforting and tasty. Lavender though scares the puddin’ out of me. Why? It is just so intense.
Today I selected this Earl Grey as it is tough like Superman. The bergamot is pretty intense but the Ceylon base does eventually show up as the cup cools. I am just hoping this jasmine isn’t the kryptonite I fear. I used my usual scoop of leaf and about a 1/4 tsp of lavender. This turned out really interesting. The two flavors combine. Neither overpowers the other. Neither is intense.
I just realized ETS’s Scent of Bergamot contains lavender and it is similar to what I am getting here. That one has some other ingredients and I think I like my simple concoction better. Next time I will use slightly less lavender as I would prefer the Earl Grey to shine through a little more. Maybe I’ll use Moscow Nights as it is a Lapsong with light bergamot. The intense smoke just seems like it will really work with the lavender. Actually really enjoying this cup though. Glad I finally manned up and used the flowers. :)
I am digging through older samples to see if there are any easy sipdowns. There is still enough for another cup after today. I’ve had it about a year. I steeped it close to 5 minutes today – because I was busy. This is the first time I have tasted the Ceylon. The base is smooth with no rough edges or bitterness. Since I am pretty immune to astringent tea – I have no idea. It seems only mildly drying to me. I am thinking that may be more my reaction to the long steeped slightly tart hibiscus than the Ceylon. The lavender is light and kind of pleasant (gmathis – I may be almost brave enough to add some lavender to a cup before long). The lemon myrtle, orange peel and other stuff are providing a strange peppery pumpkin like spice flavor to the cup. Flavored teas like this aren’t really my thing but it is a pleasant distraction. The brew is a beautiful deep red/orange.
A really fine single estate Ceylon. As I mentioned in this review: http://sororiteasisters.com/2013/06/26/vithanakanda-estate-op1-black-tea-from-empire-tea-services/ I think that the Vithanakanda estate is one of my very favorites when it comes to Ceylon production. The Ceylon teas that I’ve tried from this estate have all been so good!
I had time for one cup this morning. Sad but true. The day is over and now that I am finally sitting I am too exhausted for another. Glad I picked an earl grey first thing.
I had to get a new computer today so I could do my college assignments at the library. My Internet is too slow and limited to watch the necessary videos or download the programs at home.
The new laptop came with Windows 8. What a were they thinking? I don’t want my computer to pretend it is a tablet/phone. I don’t mind it having the option. The kids will probably like it. For me personally I don’t care about apps. I use programs. This just makes working difficult. Aaacckk! Done griping.
From Empire Tea Services, I have tried Earl Green, Earl White, De La Creme, and a couple with bergamot as a light touch ingredient. Somehow, I missed a straight black tea Earl Grey.
This like all their versions of Earl Grey is not for the faint hearted bergamot haters. There is absolutely no question what the main ingredient is here. The orange peel turns the flavor slightly away from ‘normal’ but not in a way that would annoy EG lovers. I hate getting an EG that has a bunch of other junk in the mix or so little bergamot I have to check the label. Call it something else if you are going to do that to your tea.
With this one the first cup is Bergamot/Orange with the Ceylon only revealing itself late in the sip as the cup cools. Intense.
The second cup is less intense. It adds a peppery note. The base is more present. Pleasant.
The third cup is lighter and reminds me of Twinings. Halfway through the cup I iced it and it made for a refreshing ending. It might have gone a fourth cup but I didn’t try.
I have learned that ETS blends tend to be very potent when you first open them. Sometimes I mix them with a straight tea for a while other times if you just let them age they will calm down. Today I did neither.
My rear end is dragging the ground. Staying awake a couple more hours is going to be tough. Caffeine to the rescue – but not too much caffeine. This is a year old and was not properly stored. I am pretty sure I have another tin of it around here somewhere. Still smells and tastes awesome. The bergamot is peppery early fading towards orange before catching the white peony late in the sip. Bad storage did not hurt this one at all.
This afternoon was great fun. I was directly in front of the drums. He told me afterwards he was only playing at level 5. By the end all I was hearing from him was white noise. Wouldn’t want to be positioned there if he ever plays at a 10. The bass player trashed his amp. I’m thinking maybe we were kind of loud… but that’s just a guess. hehe. For those of you who don’t get it, playing loud is so much easier, at least to a point. You reach a sweet spot where the guitar comes alive tone-wise and almost seems to play itself. When you go beyond, it just becomes racket. We were getting a little too close towards the end but people were on their feet so…
This is an Earl Grey with a white tea base. Looks like this is 11 months old. Ah oh. It comes in a waxy coated paper sack. Hmmm. I open the bag and Mmmmm. Brewed it up and it still tastes very good. Better than I remember. It starts out peppery followed by orange rind mixed with bergamot. White tea being so subtle to start with, I find I have to be patient with the cup and wait for it. Late in the sip it shows up and its worth the wait. This is about $2.30/oz ($8/bag). Empire Tea Services blends their own teas and they are quite good.
Sipdown, 230. Sad to see this one go! It is definitely on the reorder list… the best green Earl Grey I’ve ever tried, and I’ve tried quite a few. The biggest thing is how its not just a regular, grassy green tea that usually gets used for flavored tea bases, but a nutty, buttery lovely green that would probably be delicious on its own. Love these discoveries from tea companies that you might not expect!
Yum yum. I never cease to be amazed by the lovely base of this tea. So unlike your typical flavored green base! I have gotten a little fatigued on flavored greens (that aren’t florals… so mainly fruity greens), but this one is an exception. I now can pick out that this tea is full of awesome natural chestnut notes (before I described them as just nutty, buttery and even cookie-ish). I want more flavored greens like this one.
ETS adds orange to their bergamot and it gives it a unique flavor. Not like Lady Grey as it has lemon I think. It is just different. This I have had long enough the bergamot has mellowed a lot. That is a good thing as the white tea is really shining through. A good choice. Tunes: Blackfoot – Train, Train, Blue Cheer – Summertime Blues, Billy Thorpe – Children of the Sun.
My note was eaten. I picked a sample of this up today at Empire Tea Services. I could not find it on their website. This should use a decaf tea. It is a great evening tea. It is not a big bold cup. It starts light milk chocolate. Next I get light peppermint – yum. The aftertaste is vanilla and black tea. I can’t single out the rooibos or fruits. A nice mellow cup
I haven’t had this tea in a long time, which is a shame because it is so delicious. It’s rare that you get a flavored green tea with this much character. A little spiced, a little cookie-ish, a little buttery, and those flavors pair so well with the bright, citrusy bergamot. I was having a hard time trying to decide on a tea to drink this morning (nothing too fruity, nothing too floral, nothing too nutty… I really wanted a spiced tea, but I don’t really keep those around!), but this totally hits the spot.
The aroma is amazing for this tea. It smells so strong – so much like fresh peaches and apricots, my mouth started watering as the fragrance wafted through the kitchen.
It tastes as good as it smells, too. The green tea is well balanced with the peach and apricot flavors – providing a flavor that is sweet and fresh, with a light brothy mouthfeel and hint of vegetative flavor. A really amazing peach and apricot flavored tea.
PS: Thanks to TeaEqualsBliss for sending me some of this one!
I had a steep of this left from yesterday. I added a bit of Zenjala Tea Company’s smoky Bohea. Unfortunately I did not add enough to get the smoky EG I was hoping for. Still with the second of this the vanilla tames way down and it becomes just a smooth creamy delight. I said this was an sip down yesterday. Now I mean it. La sigh. On to the next!
Sip down. Started my day with Earl think I’ll end the work day with Earl. This one is heavy on the vanilla through the first cup but it’s a good one. The bergamot builds as the cup cools. The Ceylon base plays well with both of them.
With TeaEqualsBliss working at feeling better, I thought I would try and pick up some of the tea drinking slack. I failed miserably. I am sloshing as I walk and have not even come close. Miss your notes. Heal soon.
Thank you TeaEqualsBliss for sending me a bit of this tea.
I knew I’d be running some errands early today, and probably wouldn’t have a lot of time for tea, so I brewed this early in the morning in my breville and allowed it to cool so that I could try it as an iced tea (since this is the iced tea version of this blend).
I did happen to take a few sips of it hot though, and I got to say, it was alright hot, but this one is definitely better iced. The primary flavor is that of the black tea, and that’s the way it should be. After that flavor settles on the palate, I begin to pick up notes of the mango, the passion fruit and mere hints of the kiwi. I find myself wanting a bit more kiwi, but, as I continue to sip, this flavor (as well as the other fruit notes) develops a bit more.
A very refreshing iced tea!
Last night’s midnight cup. I learned I really don’t like this without sweetener. Unsweetened it tastes a lot like Tazo Rest (I think that was the name of it). It is too rose and powdery tasting for me. Add sweetener and all these other flavors pop out. It has a decaf black tea base. It takes on a berry like taste when sweet. My wife likes the icky unsweet taste.
Been a while since I have had this one. ETS bergamot is just different from every other I have tasted. Maybe it is the addition of the orange peel. Anyway, I like it. I also like white tea. I find the delicate nature of them appealing. In my mind turning a white into an Earl Grey just seems wrong, but it works. The bergamot drives the flavor profile but the white tea does not get lost under it. I still prefer green EG but this is a pretty good EG even if a little off the beaten path.
Liberteas sent this my way! Thanks a bunch!
I couldn’t find it in the steepster datebase so if you or anyone else knows the direct URL – let me know and I will see if Ricky can merge the two.
This is a Ceylon and Sencha blend with caramel and roasted almonds (flavoring).
It’s quite good. The Ceylon is a mellower-black and that Sencha gives it a hint of grassy/vegetal-ness! The Caramel makes it creamy-smooth and a bit sweet and that almond contributes to the overall flavor…nutty and somewhat-smooth.
These 4 flavors seem to work very well with each other. It’s pleasant and tasty.