This was another goodie from LiberTEAS!!!
This is a lot like a few Lady Grey’s I have had…
a lighter version of an Earl Grey…not as harsh on the bergamot or floral tastes, ya know!?
This is nice – when you are in the mood!
This blend was created to honor Lord John Grey, a favorite literary character from Diana Gabaldon’s Outlander series. A classic combination that brightens any day. Our artisan Earl Grey blend is highlighted by bright and lively black tea from Sri Lanka, a hint of orange, and blue cornflowers. The aroma of this tea is stunning and carries a lovely charm about it. We especially enjoy this tea slightly sweetened and with a good book. Here’s to you Lord John!
Ingredients: ceylon black tea, oil of bergamot, citrus peels & blue cornflower petals
The dry leaf does smell amazing. It smells more like orange than bergamot (which I know is actually an orange, but you know what I mean, right?)
The brewed liquor loses some of that aroma, which saddens me a bit because I really love the smell of the leaf.
The flavor is quite different from Earl Grey. The bergamot is altered by the addition of the orange, and this becomes a fruit flavored black tea as opposed to an Earl Grey (I guess that’s why they call this John Grey instead of Earl, eh?) There is also a faint bitterness that tastes rather odd when this tea is unsweetened – this one is so much better with a sprinkling of sugar or a drizzle of agave or honey… I chose agave.
It’s ok… not great… but not terrible either.
Well, this smells rather nice. I was alarmed when I saw what looked like dust floating on the surface after I removed the infuser, but on closer examination I decided it was a like skim of oil — or bergamot, I suppose. Which is in its own way a little alarming as well.
I’ve just realized I can’t see the color very well in my new tea mug. Should have bought a white one instead of a blue one. But I can dip out a teaspoonful and see that it’s a bright, golden amber color.
But oh my gosh it’s bitter. Did I steep it too long? Did I use too much tea? Or, since this is one of those unopened samples I bought a year ago, is it just too old even though it’s been sealed in a foil-lined packet? Advice from more experienced tea samplers hereby solicited.
Third try — this time, steeped just over 3 minutes and, as I think LiberTEAS commented after my first tasting note, at about 3 minutes the bitterness seems to appear. It’s nowhere near the first steeping I noted, which was a little over 4 minutes So the ideal seems to be just under or at 3 minutes. I’m still not sure I’d re-order, though.
Re-sampling. This time I went overboard in the wrong direction (too short a steep) but hey, learning balance is a major life lesson, right?
I only steeped a couple of minutes and added a substantial splash of half and half. No bitterness! But the flavor could be stronger. I have enough left of my sample for one more try, so I’m going to use the same proportion of tea and water and steep somewhere between what I tried the first time (probably with too much tea-to-water, I suspect) and this steep. Boosting the rating considerably.