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What is the difference between English Breakfast and Earl Grey loose leaf teas?

Updated: Mar 31, 2022

Both English Breakfast and Earl Grey tea are blends. They are made with Chinese, Assam, Ceylon and Kenyan teas, or even more unusual black teas such as Scottish. Regular English Breakfast blend will almost always include two different teas to create a full bodied robust blend with a recognizable flavor. The choice of teas is not strict, but they will always be black, and always strong. The most important ingredient in the Earl Grey tea is bergamot oil, while the type of tea can differ. Original Earl Grey tea was always made from black tea, but nowadays, blends with green, oolong, white and pu’erh tea are widely available. Herbal teas like rooibos and honeybush make a delicious caffeine free earl grey blends with a distinctive flavor mixed with natural sweetness.

History of English Breakfast tea

English Breakfast is a type of tea said to be created by a Robert Drysdale, a Scottish tea merchant and manufacturer in 1892[1. He wanted to have a perfect drink for a hearty English breakfast. However, there were other morning blends available even 60 years before that. Even today, English Breakfast tea has an irreplaceable importance in British households.

English Breakfast is only one of hundreds of different “breakfasts” around the world. To be a breakfast tea, blend needs to be full-bodied, malty, robust and awakening. Even additional flowers and fruits are welcomed, as long as the tea keeps its properties

History of Earl Grey tea

The first black tea that was supposedly used in Earl Grey blends was from China. There are several stories related to the origin of Earl Grey tea, and they all include one person – lord Charles Grey, the British Prime Minister from the early 19th century. One story say that a London tea house, Jacksons of Piccadilly, are the first that blended this tea for lord Grey. Apparently, lord Grey received this tea as a diplomatic present, and asked a tea merchant to re-invent it. Other sources say this tea was available even earlier, and bergamot oil was used to enhance the flavor of low quality tea.

Best time to drink black teas

Best time to drink black tea is in the morning or after a meal. Research showed that black tea might be more beneficial for gut and cardiovascular health than green tea. Black tea on an empty stomach might be a bad idea because of higher caffeine content. Avoid black caffeinated teas in the late afternoon, evening and before going to sleep. The best season for drinking black tea is fall and winter. Black tea with full body is a great choice for making warming lattes and blending with spices to give an extra comfort during cold months. Try using both English Breakfast and Earl Grey to make a warming latte and sweeten with honey. Earl Grey might be a better dessert tea option, while English Breakfast is a more of an everyday regular tea.

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Thank you for the information and great article. You can also read about Oolong teas in this article ""

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