Long over due but its been a busy fortnight getting back into swing of things as I have now started a Masters! Very exciting times ahead!
I won’t go into the details of earl grey as I’ve already talked about it before so I’ll just give a bit of a overview about this blend ‘Shades of Grey’. The base for the tea is an Uva leaf which comes from a remote province in Sri Lanka growing tea on the hills. The province is in the south eastern slopes of the central mountain ranges. During the wetter warm times of year the teas are mellow & soft. These were the inspiration for Sir Thomas Lipton to bring the Sri Lankan tea back to England. As the weather turns cooler the flavour of the tea goes slightly ‘mentholated’ due to the hot days & cold nights, it effects the photosynthesis is disrupted so the chemical process of it make a different flavour. Production of different seasons is slightly different for the seasons so often Uva leaves are slightly smaller. They are often served as afternoon tea with a little milk.
The dark leaves are almost back in long & twisted shapes with the bright purple rose petals & pale yellow orange peel dotting it to make a pretty blend. The smell is a bright bergamot scent, not musky like many earl grey teabags, but a light with slightly complex with the floral notes from the rose petals.
I brewed fresh water at 90 degrees & allowed to infuse for just under 3 minutes for a small pot. The wet leaves have brightened to a rich brown with hints of moss green & have unfurled slightly. Their smell is beautifully thick with the citrus notes & has hints of a ceylon flavour with the almost caramelised brown sugar.
The liquor is a light yellow orange, clear & bright. It has the classic earl grey smell but again that complexity from the rose. It’s not overly citrusy from synthetic flavours like many lower quality earl greys but its a great balanced flavour. Its not bitter & has a hint of floral notes in the after taste.
Its possibly not as strong as I am used to & I do love, but its a beautiful blend in appearance & flavour. I think it would be perfect as spring tea with its light citrus & rose notes but could be wasted in the winter months where it would have to compete with lots of other strong flavours. It would be perfect with a slice of lemon cake or something like a rose turkish delight. I’d love to share this with others who aren’t to keen on earl greys & want to try something with a great flavour!