June’s Tea of the Month is Earl Grey
This month we are showcasing the world’s most popular flavoured tea – Earl Grey. Smooth, refreshing with hints of citrus this is a blend fit for a King (or Queen…did you know that Earl Grey is Queen Elizabeth’s tea of choice!)
There are many interesting legends about the origins of this blend, unfortunately we have no way of knowing whether they are true or not. What do we know is that it was named after Charles, Earl Grey, Prime Minister of Britain from 1830-1834
The best known legend behind the tea’s name says that, sometime between 1830-1834 Earl Grey sent a diplomatic mission to China. Whilst there, one of the diplomats was said to have saved the life of a mandarin (a Chinese senior official) or a mandarin’s son. In gratitude, the mandarin gave the recipe for a blend of black tea flavoured with bergamot to be presented to Earl Grey. Earl Grey is said to have enjoyed the blend so much he then asked Twinings (who claim to have the original recipe) or Jacksons of Piccadilly (who also claim to have the original recipe) to mix it for him.
The flaws in the story are many…
- During Earl Grey’s leadership, England was on the verge of going to war with China so amicable diplomatic missions are very unlikely to have happened
- There is no evidence that Earl Grey ever sent a diplomatic mission to China
- The Chinese are very unlikely to have offered a black tea recipe as they drink mainly green tea, and bergamot does not grow in China. In fact bergamot is a citrus fruit grown in Southern Italy.
Earl Grey is ‘the’ classic scented black tea, and we are pleased to share with you our take on this blend. 100% organic, as with all of the teas in our range, Hope and Glory Earl Grey tea is grown without the use of pesticides or artificial fertilisers. We are also proud to use only the finest natural Bergamot oil – derived from the rind and juices of the fruit itself, no synthetic oil in our blend.
Take it however you please, with or without milk, or try with a slice of lemon to enhance the bergamot notes beautifully.
Sit back and enjoy!
Did you know the current Earl Grey peerage is held by Philip Kent Grey. Born on 11th May 1940, he is the 7th Earl Grey and is the great-great Grandson of Charles Grey. With a name like that we hope he likes his tea as much as we do!
Hope & Glory Earl Grey