English Breakfast from The Virginia Tea Company. . . .

There are so many teas called English Breakfast, and they can be quite different. The original English Breakfast tea is said to have been pure 100% Chinese Keemun. This is the exception rather than the rule today, and you are more likely to find a mix of black tea from Sri Lanka, India, and Kenya. Modern tea tastes in the UK overall run to strong black tea that not only holds up to, but almost requires, milk and sugar – a nice, boot-you-out-of-bed tea.

Having a tender and sensitive tummy, I am cautious with breakfast blends as I don’t add anything to my tea, and with no milk to smooth my morning beverage the day can go dicey if the tea is too astringent. Also, once awake I am generally ready to go and don’t need to kick in the pants.

This fair trade tea is a blend of Ceylon, Kenyan, and Assam teas. I have put them in the order I believe them to be represented in the blend based on the taste. Far and away the top note for me is the lemony taste of Ceylon tea tingling on my tongue. This high citrus note is almost enough to make you think it is flavored! This often indicates that the tea was grown at a higher elevation of Sri Lanka. I put Assam last because I am not getting a huge amount of malty or bready flavor.

I am quite able to drink this without milk and sugar, enjoying the dry tingle of the briskness of the tea without the almost instant stomach ache some breakfast teas give me. I do believe that if milk and sugar is your thing, the tea could withstand it and wouldn’t wimp out under the additions.

If you love a good, black breakfast blend and want to upgrade to fair trade and organic tea, give it a try!


Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type:  Black
Where to Buy:  Virginia Tea Company
Description

This organic tea is perfect for pairing with your morning meal. The full-bodied flavor can be blended with milk and sugar to create an even better drinking experience.

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

English Breakfast Black Tea by Steeped Tea

I steeped this tea for two minutes at 212 degrees, with one heaping teaspoon per cup of water.
So this is another tea company I haven’t tried before, how exciting! Let’s get right to the details of this tea. I guess it’s a blend of black teas, since that ‘s how english breakfast teas are generally made.  It has a nice, hearty, strong fragrance, which is of course exactly the sort of thing you’d expect from a breakfast tea (after all, it’s meant to help you wake up in the morning, right?).
It smells a smidge bitter while steeping, but mainly you notice that strong, robust tea flavor! After steeping, it doesn’t look super dark; instead, there’s a cedar-like, chestnutty color, and it’s very clear rather than opaque. The smell fortunately is less bitter after steeping has ended, and I can detect some malty notes.
The tea itself isn’t noticeably viscous/thickened. At the first sip I notice plenty of astringency combined with a tad of bitterness, but not a lot. It’s not too bitter (not as bitter as you’d expect from how it smelled while steeping), so I’m sure people who like really strong tea (or coffee) would love it, or it would be perfect for if you’re planning to have it with milk and sugar. Or, to avoid the bitterness, I’d consider steeping it a tad cooler next time.
While sipping this I can detect plenty of tannins–it seems to be a highly oxidized tea, which is just what black tea is supposed to be, but it also has an extremely tangy flavor, which I find quite helpful for waking up in the mornings (or even in the afternoons if I’m having a hard time staying awake after lunch).
There’s not much in the way of floral or cocoa notes, although there may be a touch of maltiness deepening the flavor here and there.
Of course I also had to add milk (to test my it-would-be-great-with-milk theory) and discovered that this tea is indeed lovely with milk, and that the milk takes out the bitterness just as I was hoping. With milk this tea has a strong, creamy, and excellent flavor, and I find it to be exactly the sort of tea I enjoy the most. <3

Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type: Black
Where to Buy:  Steeped Tea
Description
This classic breakfast tea is fresh, full and flavorful. Traditionally served with milk.
Ingredients: Black tea.

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

English Breakfast from Rishi Tea. . . .

There’s something about English Breakfast tea that’s like coming home to me. It hasn’t always been that way– in fact, let me take you on a brief history of Mary’s Experiences with English Breakfast Tea (abridged).

5th grade: to celebrate the end of a history unit on the Boston Tea Party, Mary’s teacher throws a traditional British cream tea party, whilst wearing a giant pink satin hoop-skirt-dress and powdered wig. Mary tries to sip black tea with milk and sugar and promptly gags. End of attempts at caffeinated black tea for many years to come.

(brief interlude, in which Mary begins to drinks herbals and green teas and becomes obsessed, but still won’t touch black tea with a ten foot pole. Ah, such wasted time!)

Junior year of college: Mary goes to England to study abroad. On first full night in town, students are treated to a traditional cream tea welcome party. Mary eats finger sandwiches. (Verdict: delicious.) Mary tentatively pours a cuppa. Mary adds milk and sugar because monkey see, monkey do. Mary takes a sip. Decides nope, still not a fan. Two days later, Mary starts her internship, and boss makes her a cup of tea during break because this is what all Brits do, right? And who is Mary to buck tradition? Sip. Sip sip. Siiiiip. WHOA. This is really good. PROMPTLY OBSESSED. Never goes back.

The end!

I know. Great story, yes? All of this to say, my past with English Breakfast tea is storied and vast. And every time I try a new good one, I’m brought right back to those formative moments. This one from Rishi is no exception– rich and malty, it takes milk and sweet perfectly, it’s well-balanced and rounded out, with no obvious acidity. Is it a life-changer? Probably not. But is it comforting, reminiscent of good things, warm and delicious and just what I hoped it’d be? Yup. Just like home.


Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type:  Black
Where to Buy:  Rishi Tea
Description

What makes a great breakfast tea? Our buyers have spent years studying tea bush cultivars that present the most robust character, bright red cup color and awakening aromatics. Through extensive travel and tasting, we have found some of the very best in the Assamica gardens in Thailand’s remote northern mountains. This unique origin yields an English Breakfast that is full-bodied, lively and brisk with accents of raspberry and lingonberry. Perfectly balanced on its own or gratifying when smoothed out to taste with milk and sugar.

Tasting Notes: Lively, robust red cup with a brisk flavor and sweet caramel undertones.

Ingredients: Organic black tea

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

Super Starling drinks English Breakfast from Solstice Tea Traders. . .

After killing myself at the gym this morning*, I needed a little bit of comfort. Black teas are my go-to morning cuddle buddy. They never cause DOMS (delayed onset muscle soreness). They never make me sweaty. I never collapse after drinking one.

* (10 flights on the stairmaster, a mile on the treadmill, then a variety of circuit training nonsense that at one point just had me laying on a mat, reaching for my inhaler.)

Comforting though this blend is, it’s still got that black-tea kick. This one’s an eye-opener. It pries your face open, Clockwork Orange style. Are you nodding off at your desk?

NOT ANY MORE YOU’RE NOT. WELCOME TO THE DAY.

The flavor is a nice smooth blend, a bit malty and raisin-y. I have a feeling that, if you mixed some with an herbal tea (maybe berry-flavored), you’d have a great iced tea. This could be a strong backbone for a kickin’ blend.

If you’re the sort of person who does this sort of thing. Which I do. I like to play alchemist all the time. Is it unclassy to throw ingredients into other teas? Probably. But I’ve come up with some awesome stuff. (I have also — full disclosure — completely failed.)

So give this one a try, either straight or with a buddy. At the very least, you’re in for a good morning jostle.


Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type:  Black Tea
Where to Buy:  Solstice Tea Traders
Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

English Breakfast Tea from Steeped Tea

I’ve been getting into teas from Steeped Tea lately just to see what it was all about and today I’m sharing my experiences with you on English Breakfast Tea from Steeped Tea.

English Breakfast Tea from Steeped Tea is your standard but sturdy English Breakfast Tea.  Traditionally served with milk – I rebel and drink it straight-up as I drink ALL of my teas.

This specific offering isn’t much for aroma once infused.  It smells like your run-of-the-mill black tea.  But I have to say if you are looking for a strong based black tea then English Breakfast Tea from Steeped Tea is one that may impress you!  English Breakfast Tea from Steeped Tea is dark in color and strong in flavor once in your cup awaiting for you to sip.  It’s has notes of dark cocoa powder underneath.  It’s a bit astringent but I can handle it and actually prefer it in this specific tea.  It does leave a dark lingering aftertaste but it’s welcomed.

I did like this dark cup of English Breakfast Tea from Steeped Tea and I’m looking forward to trying more from them.  I have tried a few I really like and a few I probably wouldn’t order again but I’m sure that is why they have so many different offerings – to please the masses!  That is what intrigues me about this specific company – some of their unique flavors.


SteepedTeaLogoHere’s the scoop!

Leaf Type: Black Tea
Where to Buy: Steeped Tea
Description: This classic breakfast tea is fresh, full and flavorful. Traditionally served with milk.
Ingredients: Black tea.

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!