Earl Grey is a unique blend of black tea with bergamot oil and it is one of the most popular tea in the west for its bold and aromatic flavor. You either love it, or hate it! It all depends on the blend and the quality of the ingredients used.
Interestingly, the name of this tea is actually named after Charles, the second Earl Grey and
British Prime Minister from 1830 to 1834! His most notable political achievements include the Reform Act of 1832 and the Slavery Abolition Act of 1833.
Why the Tea Earl Grey is called Earl Grey? One of the stories said that a British diplomat (rumoured to be Earl Grey), saved the life of the Mandarin (a bureaucrat scholar or noble in ancient Chinese), who gave the tea blend recipe in gratitude. However this tale was never confirmed... and it seemed Earl Grey had never set foot in China before!
Another version was when Earl Grey changed one of the trading policies for tea, therefore ended the East India trading company’s monopoly on China. With this change, it opened up China for free trade with Europe while the tea trade was booming, increasing profits for China. There was no record on tea being a diplomatic gift to Earl Grey but some rumours do passed it along as such.
Earl Grey is also known as a sophisticated tea after it was popularized by the English aristocracy since it raged through their society after Lady Grey served Earl Grey to her guests. It was so popular that people asked if it could be sold to others.
Irregardless of the different tales on Earl Grey, this unique tea blend has been a favourite among tea lovers since the 18th century. Till now, there have been different varieties of this tea like Mary Grey, Russian Earl Grey and French Earl Grey.
And the best way to drink Earl Grey? Try sipping it plain, without adding any milk, sugar or other additives!