Thursday, December 31, 2015

Kent & Sussex Tea & Coffee Company, Earl Grey Black and Jasmine Green Tea

Kent & Sussex Tea & Coffee Company Description:
This is a Special Blend of Earl Grey Black Tea and Jasmine Green Tea. An intriguing blend of Black and Green loose tea leaves. We combine our house Earl Grey which is a blend of Chinese and Indian Teas scented with Oil of Bergamot with our House Jasmine loose green tea from China. An interesting combination which we think works very well giving you a very pleasant balance in cup between the citrus of the bergamot and jasmine blossoms.

Sample provided by Kent & Sussex Tea & Coffee Company

My Review:
Last review of the year people. 2015, where did you go? Seems like I just barely got to know you and you're all but gone. Now I have to try and get used to the idea of 2016. At least we have tea to help us make the transition.

The last tea of the year is from Kent & Sussex Tea & Coffee Company. They use the name Tea And Coffee Dot Com Limited for their online presence. They have been around since 1982, carry over 700 different teas and coffee, yet I am just learning about them.

This is a blend of their Earl Grey Black tea and Jasmine Green tea. The Earl Grey is a blend of Chinese and Indian black teas lightly scent with oil of bergamot. The Jasmine green uses a Chinese green base scented with jasmine petals.

The tea came well protected in a peanut packed box. The pouch is attractively labeled. It does include steeping directions. My only complaint here is the top is not resealable.

Once open the wonderful bergamot citrus aroma rolls out and makes me smile. It is a cold, cloudy, dreary winter day outside but there is bergamot inside. A good day.

The leaf is attractive. I lightened the picture so it would show better. Actually it is much darker and appears to be an all black tea with nearly black pieces and some golden tips. Upon closer inspection, the dark green tea leaf pieces can be seen as well as an occasional stray jasmine petal.

I used boiling water and a 3 minute steep per directions. I used my French Press. I probably should have used a proper English teapot, but, you know, laziness. Need I say more.

The tea pours a bright orange tea color.

As I taste I am at first left a little undecided as to how I feel about this tea. Those who know me, know that I have an Earl Grey addiction. I like to call it a passion but let's be honest, it goes way beyond passion. I want my bergamot strong and the base tea to be its equal. I want it to something the Vikings would have fought over to possess. This is not Viking Earl Grey. Neither is it Grandmama's prissy purfume filled cup.

On the other hand, one of my complaints about flavored teas is I want to taste the base. I want to taste tea. This is a lightly scented tea, so the base teas really shine through.

What I get when tasting, is a woody flavor with a gentle touch of smokiness, maybe this is a Keemun base, though the smoothness suggests Yunnan. It does not say in the description. I also catch a controlled amount of bite from the India tea, and can easily pick out the Chinese green tea. It is pleasant in the aftertaste but not so obvious that I can identify it beyond green.

The bergamot is present but no where near what the aroma suggests. Really, if you generally hate bergamot because you find it too powerful in the cup, then this is for you. The jasmine is, to me at least, slightly easier to pick out in the taste. It is very light but well done and natural. I added sweetener to the cup and it took it very well.

So where does that leave us? Well, for the Earl Grey addicts among us, be prepared. This is not a bergamot bomb despite the dry aroma. Neither is it a bouquet of jasmine flowers. What it present is a delightful blend of teas, each with something unique to offer to the cup, along with a gentle light-handed scenting of citrus and floral that emerge as the sip progresses.

Happy New Year All!

You can find Earl Grey Black and Jasmine Green Tea here.

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