Well, time for yet another Earl Grey!

This time, it’s the English Tea Store’s “Earl Grey Cream”. It’s important to note that this is the loose leaf, non-organic blend. Apparently there are three different types of Earl Grey Cream that ETS sells, and this is the one I have.

Examination of the loose leave I see plenty of those lovely blue strands I love so much. You can smell the bergamot, but that’s about it.
I brewed this western (of course) for the first steep of 2:30. I can’t give exact measurements because currently, my tea-spoon is missing, so I’ve been trying to eyeball it. (I tend not to use the scale for smaller leaf teas, it gets everywhere, including INSIDE the scale!) Also, one of these days I’m going to invest in a water thermometer and temp test my Keurig, but that day isn’t today. So, for a ballpark estimate, say 2:30/205F/2tsp/16oz.

Taste unaltered is nice enough. You get a lovely bit of zesty citrus, accompanied by the usual floral note, but it seems balanced. Surprisingly, I can’t taste any cream flavor specifically. I’m searching for it, but the only difference between this and my usual earl greys is that the bergamot isn’t as bitey. Let’s add a Splenda.

Ok, so adding a Splenda, and I can almost taste the cream. It’s very subtle. Mostly, the creaminess just serves to temper most of the bite from the bergamot. It makes for a lovely mellow cup. It isn’t the most mellow I’ve had yet, and certainly not the creamiest, but it’s really decent. Actually, considering some of the ones I’ve tried lately, I’d even call it a touch above decent. It’s good, but not great. Somewhere in the range of a B-Minus. It’s easily a passing grade, but it’s only a tick or two above average. It’s somewhat disappointing considering how awesome the Lavender Earl Grey was. That one was a home run for me, while this one is more like a double. But, I am determined to try as many of these Earl Grey teas as I can get my hands on, so this is just another one for the list.

Bottom line: It’s good, but not great. It’s a solid Earl Grey, but somewhat lacking for an Earl Grey Cream. If you’re looking for that quintessential EGC, look elsewhere. This one is only slightly above average; no Holy Grail here. Sorry.

Flavors: Bergamot, Floral

2 min, 30 sec

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HELLO! My name is Shanie and I love tea!

While I have always loved various types of tea, for a very long time it came exclusively from a grocery store. It’s only been a year or so now that I’ve gotten into loose leaf. As such, there will likely be tasting notes I do for bagged tea as well as good quality (and not so good quality) loose leaf teas. I’m still learning as I go so have patience please!

Right now, I am on a massive Earl Grey kick. So if a ton of my notes are just various varieties of EG, that’s why!

Some of my favorite flavors include: Cocoa, Malt, Bread, Honey, Earthy, Sweet Citrus, Caramel, Apple, Spices, and Cinnamon.

Some flavors I don’t like: Licorice, Coconut, Bitey Citrus (like Citric Acid), Licorice, Sour, Smoke, Overpowering Fake Vanilla, Stevia, and did I mention Licorice?

NOTE: I am Type 2 Diabetic. As such, I can really not have sugar added to tea without suffering problems. This prohibits me from using either plain sugar or honey. Instead, I use Splenda as I found my system can handle it well and I like the flavor. I try to avoid stevia as I’ve found it often ruins the flavor of tea. However, not all teas require sweetener, and some are better without. Because of this, if I add sweetener to a tea, I will mention it in the tasting note and say what kind and how much. Usually, I sweeten flavored and herbal teas but leave true teas unsweetened. There are exceptions, but this is a general rule of thumb to go by.

Almost all of the tea I brew is western style. I occasionally do grandpa, but pretty much never Gong-fu. I do own a Gaiwan, but it never gets used. Considering I don’t have a “sip setting” when it comes to beverages, it’s really hard for me to get into any sized amount less than 8oz at a time. I know that probably makes me a tea-heathen, but so be it. I like my mugs.

I have decided to try and make a scale for my ratings. So here goes.

As of January 2020.

100-91: These are my go-to favorites. I will likely go out of my way to always keep these on hand, including going on third party websites to obtain out of season.
90-81: This is a tea I really did enjoy, and I will likely purchase again. However, I wouldn’t go to the ends of the earth for it, and it isn’t my all-time favorite.
80-71 This is a tea that, while I may have somewhat enjoyed, something is holding me back from making it a mainstay. Maybe the flavor profile isn’t the best. Maybe there is an offputting aftertaste. It varies. But while I did like it and will continue to drink it, I don’t absolutely need it in my life, and while I will likely finish what I have, I may or may not get more.
70-61: This is a tea which I drank, but I didn’t like it. However, I didn’t hate it either. It wasn’t bad enough to dump, and if it is the only thing available to drink, I would likely drink it instead of plain water. But in the end, this is just not my literal cup of tea and I will likely not get this again.
60-51: This is something that I didn’t like much at all, but for one reason or another, refused to dump. If I squint hard enough and use my imagination, I can almost BS myself into thinking they are decent, and I suppose I can choke it down and not waste it. These are teas that I will not be buying again, and may not even finish what I have.
50-41: Yeah, whatever this is, I there’s a good chance I dumped it. At this level, it’s pretty bad stuff with either weak flavor, nasty flavor, or all the wrong flavors, It has few redeeming qualities, and I likely won’t reach for this one again. On the bright side, it isn’t sewage water, so there’s that.
40-31. On it’s best day this tea has no redeeming qualities. This not only got dumped but the package it came in either got thrown away, traded, or shoved to the back of the cupboard to never be touched again. Not the worst thing I’ve ever tasted, but darn sure close.
30-Under: The worst thing I’ve ever tasted. This not only has no redeeming qualities, but it is gag-inducing. “Teas” in this range are so bad I not only will never drink them again, I really don’t feel like offloading them onto anyone else because they are just that bad. Actual sewage water.


Pennsylvania, US

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