I pulled this tea out quickly as I needed to have something nice after the ceylon tea I just drank. This is one of my favorite bagged teas. I’ve been drinking this one for years and I always enjoy it.
Twinings is almost where my journey as a black tea lover starts,it introduces me to major black tea branches at that time. Earl was always a nice approach to black tea for me ,since it’s light and fragrant——the smell of bergamot is always delightful and energetic.
My second real attempt with Earl Grey after a horrific Tazo cup a few months back.
Since my Tazo hot cup was so bitter and oversteeped when I followed the instructions on the packaging, I might have understeeped this cup. The teabag smelled very fragrant and quite delicious, with the bergamot a subtly sweetening the blend.
The bergamot in this isn’t the strongest, which is what I like. However, the taste was overwhelmingly floral, which was quite odd. Almost potpourri-like. There isn’t a real strong taste of bergamot; it’s more of an aftertaste that lingers on the tongue and in the back of the throat after each sip. A pleasant aftertaste that was altogether welcome. But the black tea itself didn’t have any real presence at all, which surprised me. I wanted it to be a better balance of the two, and I didn’t expect the bergamot to taste so cloying and floral.
I’m going to try to brew my second cup a bit stronger next time, in hopes that the black tea taste will rise to match the flavoring in this package. It was a very drinkable cup, with no bitterness whatsoever, but I’m not sure if this is going to be the perfect blend of Earl Grey for me yet. More tinkering needed!
Entering a review on my phone is impossible!
Anyway, I had to go to an in-law thing on the other side of Texas last weekend and they are all hardcore coffee drinkers. I took a little of my own tea along, and an electric kettle, mug, etc for the hotel, but hauling all that to aunt-in-law’s house would have been a bit rude. However, there were a bunch of Twinnings Earl Grey bags hanging around in a cabinet and one of the cousins-in-law introduced me to “a coffee house tea drink” called a London Fog. Basically, earl grey tea brewed from a bag, vanilla syrup, and hot milk mixed up together. Except in very rare occasions (Cara’s Reichenbach Recovery from Adagio being THE Exception) milk never goes in an Earl Grey for me. However, this was surprisingly drinkable, and now I have a way to use up the ridiculous huge amount of Twinnings Earl Grey I have hanging around.
I also found a recipe for Earl Grey Shortbread. Those came out smashingly delicious!
Apparently, according to Wikipedia anyway, London Fog was “invented” in a coffee shop in Canada.
My second review for this Earl Grey and I want to take the opportunity to speak up for it. Firstly, this size tea bag is meant for 6 oz of water. If you want more tea use more bags (or import the larger Brit version). Secondly, I’ve read some reviews that stated this is “weak”. Well, Earl Grey isn’t supposed to be a strong tea, though there are versions out there that play up the bergamot a bit more. Personally I think the balance of bergamot and tea taste is perfect in the Twinings blend.
Thirdly, there is a controversy concerning the US version of this tea was weakened in 2006 when the packaging changed (the Brit version was indeed reformulated in 2011, but that’s another pot of tea entirely!) and I want to address that.
I don’t think it was changed at all. The tea was always blended in England and prior to the 2006 package change had been packed in the US. After 2006 it was packed in England and was still blended there, hardly a need to worry there. The new packaging lists the strength of the tea as “light”, whereas before no such indicator was displayed. Perhaps the power of suggestion played into peoples perception of the taste, they were told it is a light tea and tasted it as such.
It is also possible that a bad batch of tea reached our shores in 2006/07. That combined with the new “light tea” description may account for some people detecting a taste difference. An entire blog was devoted to this “change” in 2006 – savetwinings.blogspot.com , but sadly has not been updated since 2009.
Twinings denied any change in their US Earl Grey formula at the time and never have admitted to any changes to the US blend since. I believe them because you can ask any Brit who loves Twinings Earl Grey…the company isn’t exactly shy about tampering with the blend and admitting to it when they do. www.telegraph.co.uk/foodanddrink/8728913/Twinings-is-changing-Earl-Grey-man-the-barricades.html
Sorry for the rambling nature of this review but I felt this good, solid tea needed a sympathetic defense witness. lol
I’ll admit, although I’m pretty sure I’ve had this in the past, it’s probably only ever been with lots of milk and honey, and never without.
At any rate, yuck. I’m reminded of Sinister’s tealog concerning it, and Captain Picard (I am a Trekkie myself, although I did tend towards Voyager—I was a fan of the Doctor), and specifically the quote “watery slurry” which is Twining’s Earl Grey.
I didn’t make it particularly hot—I need to replace my kettle, I really do—but before that, the bags smelt deliciously of Earl Grey. Sniffing the wet bag, and the tea, all I could smell was overpowering bergamot. When I sipped it, that’s really all I could taste. Water and strong bergamot. Now, bergamot is bitter, like grapefruit, but the bitter that I tasted seemed more like the kind you get when you go to take the zest of something and cut too deep into the pith.
I don’t know, just my thought.
The tea taste was watery and way in the background. I tried to add some honey, and it helped somewhat—the tea is slightly more noticeable, but overall still very… I don’t want to say yuck again, because it wasn’t horrible.
However, it did give me a thought. Earl Grey scented cologne. Anyone? Interesting, eh? I remember seeing a how-to for green tea perfume somewhere. I’m sure it could be adapted. It’d give me something to do with the rest of the teabags. Although I’ll try drinking this again when I can get the water hotter.
Earl Grey. This is strongly associated with high tea for me, for historical reasons. But here I am, drinking it for lunch, with cheese and bread. Heresy.
Still, it’s a nice cup drunk black, and the astringency (heh) tackles the rather cloying cheese I’m eating quite nicely. 3/5 chainsaws indeed. :-)
I just needed something easy and mild this morning to go with a chocolate chip cookie. This did the trick. There is really nothing of merit to say about this tea, but if all you’re looking for is something that will not overpower or distract whatever it is that you are having with it yet is still relatively pleasant, this is not a bad option. It served its purpose today.