Soooooo… I don’t think this is an Earl Grey.

Like, if you were a customer who wasn’t used to ‘variant’ Earl Greys and you ordered this expecting a slightly more lemony version of your standard EG (which is kind of how the tea is described) I think you would be very disappointed with what you had received. Now, to be fair to Firebelly, there is bergamot peel in this blend so it’s not completely abandoned the standard EG ingredient composition – it’s just hard to taste with everything else going on. Firebelly doesn’t use flavouring or oils in their blends though – it’s one of the reasons some of the blends taste a bit more ‘flat’ than what a lot of people would be used to. So, not incorporating bergamot oil into an Earl Grey blend would make it very challenging to present something that would taste ‘normal’ to the average person.

So ignoring the fact this is present as an Earl Grey… it’s a good tea.

It tastes really citrusy but distinctly lemon leaning. I get a lot of the lemon thyme from the flavour and it’s very soothing and refreshing. Lemon thyme isn’t an ingredient you’ll see really anywhere in commercial tea blends and Firebelly has used it a couple of their blends. It’s delicious. Not really savory like a ‘regular’ thyme would be, and creates this punchy citrus top note that works in a similar way to what a good lemon oil might come across as if used sparingly. There’s also juniper in the blend which adds a nice gentle pine-y undertone and compliments the lemon myrtle and lemon thyme perfectly. Were it a bit more aggressive in the blend you might think ‘gin’ because there’s a pretty botanical vibe to this tea already. I’d personally love more juniper, but this is a nice restrained amount.

Definitely an interesting tea! …but not an Earl Grey.

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Hello! My name is Kelly, though many people in the tea community call me Ros or Roswell.

I am a mid-twenties tea addict, blogger, and all around nerd. I grew up in the Prairies, but a few years ago I relocated to Quebec to pursue a career with DAVIDsTEA in the tea industry! I’m still working on getting my French language skills down…

My first introduction to tea, in any form outside of instant and bottled iced tea, was about seven years ago when I happened to stumble upon DAVIDsTEA while looking for a birthday present for a friend! I tried their Birthday Cake rooibos blend, and I’ve been hooked on tea ever since! In those seven years; I was introduced to the online tea community, expanded my interest in flavoured teas to include a deep love and appreciation for straight teas and traditional brewing methods, got a tea themed tattoo, started reviewing teas, amassed a sizable tea and teaware collection, became a TAC certified Tea Sommelier, & even came full circle by beginning a career in the tea industry with DAVIDsTEA!

I consider myself a Jack of all Teas, and strive to have a knowledge and appreciation of all tea types, formats, and styles of drinking. I don’t like to feel boxed in to just being a “flavoured tea” or “straight tea” drinker – my expectations may vary depending on the type of tea or how it’s been processed/prepared but if it’s good tea, it’s good tea no matter how it’s been made!

You name it, I probably drink it- and I’ll absolutely try anything at least once.

My default method of preparation is hot, Western style, and straight – but I’m not opposed to additions if I’m in the right mood. If I ever add something to a tea or use a different method of preparation I will ALWAYS call it out in the tasting note though.

I like to listen to music when drinking tea, especially when I’m brewing a large pot at a time or steeping Gongfu. Often I curate very intentional tea and music pairings, and sometimes I share them here in my tasting reviews. Music is something that I find can deeply affect the experience of having tea.

I’m also one half of the “tea and fandom” podcast GeekSteep where, weekly, we discuss newly explored fandoms over tea as well as try to figure out the perfect tea to pair with each fandom. You can find us on Spotify and Apple & Google podcasts.

Favourite flavour notes/ingredients: Pear, lychee, cranberry, cream, melon, pineapple, malt, roasty, petrichor, sweet potato, heady florals like rose, hazelnut or walnut, sesame, honey (in moderation), and very woody shou.

Least favourite flavour notes/ingredients:
Lemongrass, ginger, strongly spiced profiles (and most Chai in general), mushrooms, seaweed, chamomile, stevia, saltiness or anything that reminds me too much of meat that isn’t supposed to taste like meat…

Currently exploring/obsessed with: Sheng from Yiwu, Yancha (Qilan in particular), anything with a strong sweet potato note. Also, I need to try ALL the root beer teas! Searching for a really good caramel flavoured blend, ideally with a black tea base.

Please contact me at the instagram account listed below if you would like me to review your teas.

Currently I’m employed in the tea department of the DAVIDsTEA head office. While I’m still sharing my own personal thoughts on new & existing DAVIDsTEA blends, I am no longer numerically rating them due to the obvious conflict of interest. Any comments expressed are a reflection of my own thoughts and opinions, and do not reflect the thoughts and opinions of the company. Any DAVIDsTEA blends you currently see with a numeric score were reviewed prior to my being hired there and have not been adjusted since becoming a DAVIDsTEA employee.


Montreal, QC, CA


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