Grapefruit Grey Black Tea from Acquired Taste Tea Company

acquiredTasteTea Information:

Leaf Type:  Black

Where to Buy: Acquired Taste Tea

Tea Description:

A new addition to our Earl Grey collection. This black tea combines bergamot, grapefruit and mandarin to create a pleasant variation on an Earl Grey theme.

Learn more about this tea here.

Taster’s Review:

I like to do what I call the ‘Earl Grey Test’ whenever I encounter any kind of earl grey. First cup is all natural, to see how the base is in comparison with the bergamot. Second cup is with the finest bit of sugar, to wake up the sweetness of the black tea and the flavoring. Third is with a dash of cream. So how did this one hold up?

Grapefruit earl grey is an interesting take on a classic. The dry leaf is quite strong of both bergamot and the tangy grapefruit notes. Too bad that did not translate to the steeped leaf. Now, I love bergamot, but I feel like this was too strong. It overpowered the grapefruit notes. The base was a bit too robust and dusty for my taste, but adding some cream definitely helped.

Too bad! I had such high hopes for this tea. I really want to like it, but the blerghamot is simply too strong for my taste. I think I like smelling this tea than drinking it. If a strong bergamot is your scene, then go for it! Or, know, go for Republic of Tea’s Earl Greyer… Like the company name suggests, I think this tea is just an ‘Acquired Taste.’

Dorian Grey Black Tea by Luhse

DorianGreyTea Information:

Leaf Type:  Black

Where to Buy: Luhse

Tea Description:


Queen Song is clearly not your typical gorilla. She’s a risk taker and norm-breaker. She couldn’t just leave traditional Earl Grey tea alone. 


Earl Grey’s flamboyant brother. Added vanilla takes average Earl to a whole new level.

Learn more about this tea here.

Taster’s Review:

Dorian Grey is one of two Luhse flavoured blends I picked up with my recent order. The first thing I noticed about the full bags is how unique and well thought out the branding is. Everything from the colouring (midnight blue), to the white, searchlight-like logo, through to little things like the font and bigger things like the slogans is spot-on for the 20s, prohibition-era theme. Luhse are really sorted from a brand perspective, and that’s a nice thing to see. The “story” somehow makes their blends more than just tea, and it adds a lot to the appeal, that’s for sure.

Dorian Grey is an Earl Grey Cream, and it smells delicious from the moment I open the bag. Sweet, rich, and gloriously decadent. It’s a fairly unassuming blend to look at – just fairly small, uniform black-brown leaves. I used 1 tsp of leaf for my cup, and gave it 3.5 minutes in boiling water. It brewed up pretty strong, so I added a splash of milk.

To taste, this is one of the creamiest Earl Grey Cream blends I’ve tried. The initial sip is full-on vanilla; sweet and rich, with an intense creaminess that reminds me very much of premium vanilla ice cream, or perhaps crème anglaise. The earl grey is very much second fiddle, but it’s possible to find the bergamot lurking in the mid sip. It’s not over-strong, which I appreciate in an Earl Grey blend, but it does manage to cut through some of the heady vanilla sweetness. It’s a pleasing, citrus-laced counterpoint, and adds a layer of depth to the flavour. The black base can hardly be tasted, but it’s smooth and unobtrusive, and it lets the flavours shine.

I’m really impressed with this one. It more than lives up to its promise, and it makes for a deliciously tasty cup. It would make for an excellent introduction to Earl Grey Cream blends (although possibly you’d be spoilt forever), or a fabulous treat for existing fans. This one blows others out of the water.

Earl Grey by Pipers Loose leaf Tea

PipersEarlGreyTea Information:

Leaf Type:  Black

Where to Buy:  Pipers Loose Leaf Tea

Tea Description:

Made with the finest China teas including a large portion of white tips (the most prized leaf of the plant) and blended with the highest quality Sicilian oil of bergamot available.

Learn more about this tea here.

Taster’s Review:

I have had Earl Grey teas in the past and they are certainly not one of the first I reach for when looking to fill my cup. I have found them rather lackluster, and have found myself suspecting tea companies of using the bergamot to hide 2nd rate teas underneath. This is obviously not the case with Piper’s Earl Grey White Tips.

Dry, this tea is lovely long full leaves with long white tips interspersed.  The white tips have picked up more of the bergamot scent and the smell is quite heady indeed! In the cup, the tea is bold, matching the lush bergamot head to head. The Chinese tea a brings nuances of a deeper flavored black, in this case notes of plum and earth. The light formal flavors of the bergamot (yes, for some reason I’ve always considered bergamot to be a “formal” or “fancy” flavor!) gives lift to the deep flavor of the chinese black tea base and rounds out the profile to be not a tea for afternoons on sunny days, but….well, for anytime really! It would hold it’s own against a continental breakfast with gusto…and a bit of fancy, of course. This tea was a welcomed change in my cup, and I will look forward to to trying the other offerings that Pipers has!

Mighty Organic Earl Grey Tea from Tea Leaf Co.

MIGHTYOrganicEarlGreyTea Information:

Leaf Type:  Black

Where to Buy:  Tea Leaf Co. 

Tea Description:

A GBOP grade of black tea for this earl grey and blended with extra bergamot essence creates an infusion especially well suited for London fogs or for those seeking a strong bergamot flavor in their tea. Much stronger than the classic, malty notes, and a lively cup.

Learn more about this tea here.

Taster’s Review:

This Mighty Organic Earl Grey Tea is the last of four teas that Tea Leaf Co. sent me to sample.  I figured I’d save the Earl Grey for my last day as a tea reviewer and go out with all my favorites!

When I opened the pouch, I was a little surprised by the aroma.  I could smell the bergamot, certainly, but I could also smell licorice.  I thought my olfactory nerves were deceiving me!

I brewed this tea in my Kati Tumbler (seriously, folks, if you haven’t gotten yourself one of these yet, you really SHOULD!)  I measured 1 bamboo scoop of tea into the basket of my Kati and then poured 12 ounces of boiling water into the tumbler.  I let it steep for 3 minutes.

After the brewing was complete, I lifted the cup to my nose to smell the brewed tea.  Again … I smell licorice!  Weird!  At this point, I’m starting to worry that I’m coming down with something.

But the flavor is NOT licorice!  The flavor is bergamot!  Distinctly!  It’s tangy and it’s a little sweet, it’s citrus-y and it’s bright.  It’s bergamot.

So don’t let my weird experience with the aromatics throw you off – this is an Earl Grey tea – a “Mighty” fine Earl Grey!  The black tea is richly flavored and has a pleasant, robust taste that’s just right to greet you in the morning and give you that gentle shake awake that you need.  It has notes of malt that mingle with the bergamot in a pleasant way.

The bergamot – along with the orange peel – offers a sunny flavor.  These two citrus notes together create more of a citrus-y flavor rather than a straightforward bergamot note which I don’t really mind because I can still taste the distinguished flavor of bergamot.

Overall, a really good Earl Grey.  Where does it rate in my Earl Grey ratings?  I think it would be somewhere in the upper echelon of Earl Grey, but it’s not in the top three, or even the top ten.  It’s much better than many of the Earl Grey teas I’ve tried, but not as good as some.  I’d definitely recommend it to the Earl Grey aficionados out there – it’s absolutely worth trying, you might find your new favorite even though I didn’t find mine!

Everest Earl Grey from Nepali Tea Traders

Everest_Earl_GreyTea Information:

Leaf Type:  Black

This tea is available from Amoda Tea.

Tea Description:

This is perfect Spring afternoon Earl Grey. The black tea is light and works to create an elegant blend. With the added sweet orange peel, fragrant bergamot and a touch of Bourbon vanilla bean from Madagascar, this is delicious with or without milk or sugar.

Learn more about subscribing to Amoda Tea here.

25% of profits from our Nepal teas will be donated to the ‘Nepali Tea’ Restoration Fund for earthquake relief.  Learn more here.

Taster’s Review:

Yay!  Earl Grey!  I was so happy to find this Everest Earl Grey from Nepali Tea Traders in this month’s box from Amoda Tea because it’s a tea that I’ve wanted to try for a while now.  I mean, hey, if it’s Earl Grey – you know I want to try it!

To steep this tea, I used my Kati Tumbler.  At first, I was going to use my Breville One-Touch and use the entire contents of the sampler package that Amoda Tea sends in their monthly box, but, I decided that I wanted to have two separate occasions where I could enjoy this tea so I used my Kati Tumbler, measured a bamboo scoop of tea into the basket and poured 12 ounces of boiling water into the tumbler.  Then I let it steep for 3 minutes.

One tip about this tea:  let it cool a bit.  I find that the flavors emerge when the tea has cooled a little – the tea isn’t cold, not even what I’d call lukewarm, but it’s not piping hot.  It’s somewhere between the lukewarm and piping hot.  Not quite “hot” … it’s a pleasantly drinkable temperature.

The first sip or two was a little less than what I wanted in terms of flavor, to be honest.  Then I let it cool a bit.  (Check out the previous paragraph!)  Once the temperature dropped to the “pleasantly drinkable temperature” the flavors came forward.

The black tea is the strongest flavor I taste here – but it’s not a really powerful or aggressive tasting black tea.  It’s on the mellow side.  Smooth, rich but not overly robust.  As the description above suggests, it makes a nice afternoon cuppa.

Then I taste orange and vanilla notes.  Not bergamot orange, but orange.  It’s bright and a really refreshing orange taste.  The vanilla is soft and not quite as creamy as I expected it to be.  It’s more like a sweet accent rather than the creamy accent that I usually experience from an “Earl Grey Creme” type of tea.

I pick up on the bergamot by mid-sip.  It’s not quite as tangy as I normally experience from a bergamot flavored tea.  At least, not until the aftertaste.  In the aftertaste, I get that bergamot tangy note.  During the sip, I notice a sweet, flavorful citrus-y note with a distinct “bergamot-y” type of flavor.

While the bergamot is ‘distinct’ – it’s not as profound a bergamot flavor as I have experienced with other Earl Grey teas.  This is the Earl Grey tea for someone who typically finds a strong bergamot presence to be a bit too much for them, because this bergamot is rather subdued.   Distinct but subtle in it’s approach.

Overall, this is a really tasty tea.  Is it my favorite Earl Grey tea?  No, not by a long shot and if I were rating it according to my Earl Grey standards, it would probably end up with one or two stars on a five star rating scale.  But, I think that the tea itself is worthy of at least a couple stars on it’s own.  This isn’t a tea that would be part of my Earl Grey collection – but I would definitely enjoy having it as part of my overall tea collection.