Monday, August 5, 2013

Earl Grey by Tao of Tea

Earl Grey by Tao of Tea

Seller Description: "This is a handcrafted blend of organic Assam black tea and organic bergamot Essence. Our bergamot ‘Citrus Bergamia’ originates from Sicily in Italy, the famous home to this fruit, and is steam distilled to make a natural essence. We hand-blend the bergamot essence and tea leaves in small batches so that we can maintain an even flavor profile, often ignored by larger mechanical processes. The flavor of the tea is fresh, citrusy and slightly floral. This citrus aroma has a stabilizing effect on the emotions, promotes positive thoughts and relieves anxiety. Bergamot is second only to lavender in its ability to relax the brain and induce sleep."
Directions: 1 teaspoon per 8oz, steep 4-5 minutes
Website: Earl Grey
Cost: $8.75/3.5oz tin

Teaware: 16oz glass infuser mug with lid
Measured dry: 2 teaspoons
Water Temperature: Boiling
Steeping Time: 4-1/2 minutes
Additives: 1 tablespoon of Sugar in the Raw

This tea has some pretty wonderful promise, but for me the love just wasn't there. The moment I opened the bag, my hope for this tea began to wither. It has a pungent, burnt aspect that seems like it belongs to a completely different kind of tea. Nothing about it made me think "Earl Grey" and I couldn't wait to get my nose away from it.

Despite my misgivings, I really tried to keep an open mind, but the first sip tasted nearly identical to the dry aroma. It was just overwhelmingly burnt black tea, coming at you from two fronts: the smell of the tea and the flavor itself.

As it has cooled the bergamot was able to peek out of its hiding place. It was still faint, but at least it was present. Probably the best thing about this blend was the level of astringency, which was nearly negligible. At least you don't have to worry about a dry-mouth factor.

Overall, this one just isn't for me. I like everything they have to say about it, and the fact that it's organic, but as much as I truly wanted to love it, I just can't. It will not be moving forward in the Battle of the Earl Greys.

Prominent Notes: Burnt black tea
Aftertaste: Burnt black tea
Overall: This won't be moving forward

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