Earl Grey tea is one of the most popular black teas in the world. Earl Grey has a beautiful deep golden colour. The tea tastes malty with strong citrus tones. A unique tea. Apart from its taste, Earl Grey has an intriguing origin in its existence but also in the production process. Read on to learn more.
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Earl Grey tea is one of the most popular black teas in the world. Earl Grey has a beautiful deep golden colour. The tea tastes malty with strong citrus tones. A unique tea. Apart from its taste, Earl Grey has an intriguing origin in its existence but also in the production process. Read on to learn more about this black tea, its history, health benefits and production process.
Earl Grey is black tea flavoured with Bergamot. Bergamot is a citrus fruit from Calabria in Italy. The fruit is a cross between two different citrus fruits. The Citrus limetta, a kind of lime and the Citrus aurantium a sour orange. From the peel of the Bergamot, Bergamot oil is extracted, which is used to flavour Earl Grey tea.
Earl Grey can be made in two different ways. Bergamot oil can be sprinkled on the tea leaves, causing the tea leaves to absorb the oil. This gives a strong citrus flavour and is the most common way of making Earl Grey or Bergamot oil can be added to the tea water. At Dilmah we use the first method.
Although the name of Earl Grey suggests it originated in England, Earl Grey tea was invented by the Chinese. The Chinese have ancient traditions and knowledge when it comes to making tea. From time immemorial, they have experimented with different flavours to make the tea more exotic. For instance, they flavoured tea with flowers (think of green tea with jasmine flowers), herbs and spices such as vanilla and ginger, but also with fruit such as Bergamot.
Charles Grey, the 2nd Earl of Grey in England (Fallodon, 13 March 1764 - Howick, 17 July 1845) was the Prime Minister of England between 1830 and 1834. The Chinese gave the Earl a special gift in recognition of an act of heroism. Tea flavoured with Bergamot. Rumour has it that the Bergamot was added to the tea water to mask the lime flavour of the estate's spring water. Tea with Bergamot immediately became Charles Grey's wife's favourite tea after tasting it. Whenever she had visitors, she would serve the tea. Earl Grey tea soon became the favourite tea of English high society. Tea merchants in London began reproducing this tea and calling it Earl Grey tea. Earl Grey isn't known for his political achievements, but rather for the fact that his wife introduced the world to this unique tea.
Earl Grey is flavoured black tea. The process begins with fresh tea leaves from the tea plant Camellia Sinensis. After picking, the tea leaves are dried, massaged with a roller, oxidised and sorted. So far, the process is the same as for making black tea. To make Earl Grey tea from black tea, bergamot oil is added to the tea leaves immediately after the drying process.
Black tea naturally contains many antioxidants. Black tea is good for you for many reasons. If you are cold, tea warms your body. If you are feeling down, a cup of tea can help because you are taking a moment for yourself. Like other black teas, Earl Grey tea contains a high level of Catechin. Catechin is a collective name for various polyphenols. These are antioxidants found in plants. Antioxidants fight free radicals to keep our cells healthy.
Tea is hygroscopic. This means that it tends to absorb flavours and odours from its surroundings. All our teas are therefore packed air and light tight, directly after production in Sri Lanka. Do you want to enjoy your tea longer? Keep the tea in an airtight container. The Earl Grey from our t-Series keeps well in the tin. This tin has a double seal. It has a lid on the inside and another one on the outside. Your tea is thus doubly protected against outside influences and stays fresh longer.
Brewing tea requires some preparation. All steps of the brewing process impact the taste: