Price and presentation: £1.70. Nice white cup with red lid and white crenellated safety cuff. Inbuilt stirrer in lid. Loose or bag? Pret branded pyramid bag. Flavour profile and hue: quite a strong blend. Strong dusty flavour like attic floorboards. Very pleasant. Hue was dark like a tough muddy boot. Comments: lovely, pleasant and a bit BUILDERY. Not a subtle or delicate cuppa. Packs a good punch (if that’s what you’re looking for!) Score: 8/10
After I was given a sample tea bag from Bluebird Tea Co, I was keen to give their loose leaf tea a try. I was incredibly excited by the variety of flavours they had on their website, and smaller sample sized pouches encourage you to take a chance on them to see if you like them.
This is the Earl Grey Creme and what a treat it is. I don’t know how you feel about Earl Grey usually, but I feel it can be quite abrasive if the flavour is not balanced correctly, it can seem a bit like solvent or paint thinner, sort of like a cuppa that you have whilst you’re painting a room. This solvent-y top note comes from the bergamot oil which gives Earl Grey its usual flavour.
The Earl Grey Creme from Bluebird Tea Co is exceptionally delicious. As you may guess from the name is it a smoother, creamier Earl Grey, the softening of the bergamot comes from the inclusion of vanilla and cornflowers. Mixing this with a softer Ceylon black tea blend gives the whole tea lovely well-rounded taste, soft but with the perfume of the bergamot instead of the usual strong flavour that Earl Grey gives.
The 20g sample pouch I ordered was £3.00 and has given me around 8 cups, I think. Depends how liberal or frugal you wish to be with your loose leaf! Bluebird Tea Co offer mix and match offers on loose leaf so you can choose which varieties you wish to try!
Recently moving jobs to somewhere near to Tottenham Court Road has brought a greater range of lunchtime options to me. Oh brave New World that has such Cafés in’t!
Today I noticed that my new favourite Itsu offer a few types of green and flavoured tea. They had a brilliant contraption behind the counter (which looked like an ice cream machine…) the machine took in a good spoonful of loose leaves, spun them around in a clear perspex tube with hot water for a while, and then the tea flushed down through a filter into the waiting cup below. I’d never seen anything like it!
The result was a very delicious green tea, not over-stewed or too cloying (which is often a problem with green tea for me). What a brilliant wizzy exciting machine! I hope they catch on with other cafés, I would love to try a loose leaf English Breakfast by the same futuristic method!