Earl Black

Tea type
White Tea
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Edit tea info Last updated by Southern Boy Teas
Average preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 2 min, 30 sec 10 oz / 295 ml

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43 Tasting Notes View all

  • “In the middle of trying to quit my ridiculous tobacco habit for what’s probably about the tenth time. Can’t even explain how bad I feel. I think tea is helping a little bit, this stuff’s certainly...” Read full tasting note
  • “I haven’t been online for a while but should be getting back to normal very shortly. Whilst doing my CBT for a motorbike I had an accident that has left me bed ridden for almost a week. Whilst...” Read full tasting note
  • “On the fourth day of Christmas, 52teas gave to me Earl Black. (Backlogging. 4 days ago. Monday afternoon.) Upon cutting open the packet, I immediately identified the smell as Black Current Bai Mu...” Read full tasting note
  • “I’m finishing this off from the 12 days of tea. I do enjoy white teas when I drink them, but I tend to reach for them with less exuberance than black tea. This one is light, fruity, and...” Read full tasting note

From 52teas

It’s another hot day in Doo-Dah (I have no idea why Wichitans refer to the city as “Doo-Dah” but it feels right; feel free to enlighten me if you know where this comes from). I’m pretty sure that the global warming people were right. I’m just hoping we can fix it before we all turn into puddles of goo.

In the meantime, I’m relaxing with a big glass tumbler full of our new tea of the week. It’s a blend of shou mei white teas, dried black currants, organic bergamot flavor and natural black currant flavor. And it is seriously hitting the spot. I got some really nice shou mei for this blend: it’s light and sweet, but very much a presence in a cup that is otherwise a perfect balance of tart and sweet. I have always loved our black currant bai mu dan, and if you like that and like earl grey, I don’t think you can possibly go wrong with this blend. It is delicious!

Our Tea of the Week for the week of July 2, 2012

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At 52teas.com, you will find unique, hand-blended artisan loose leaf teas: a new limited edition creation every week of the year. We pride ourselves on offering truly unique, one-of-a-kind tea blends that you won’t find anywhere else.

43 Tasting Notes

172 tasting notes

In the middle of trying to quit my ridiculous tobacco habit for what’s probably about the tenth time. Can’t even explain how bad I feel. I think tea is helping a little bit, this stuff’s certainly refreshing and a little calming. I just need to try to flush this toxic crap out of my system for good. Nicotine is EVIL, EVIL, EVIL. Argh.. :(


You can do it!!

Dylan Oxford

Keep it up man :)

Southern Boy Teas

I smoked a pipe for many years, then “cut back” to cigars and finally to cigarettes. I too tried everything to quit. About three months ago, I picked up an ecig, and I haven’t had a cigarette since. I don’t even miss them. The ecig is giving me that something to do with my hands. It satisfies the oral fixation, and it gives me a little nicotine. I’m in the process of slowly cutting back the nicotine levels in the ejuice I’m using. I can not speak highly enough of the ecigs. I feel so much better, and I honestly don’t miss cigarettes or tobacco one bit. My doctor told me that the nicotine is not the BEST thing for me, but that without the 2000 other poisons that are in a cigarette, it is not much worse than caffeine. Anyway, I would absolutely recommend these ecigs to ANYONE trying to quit. (It’s also a MUCH cheaper habit than tobacco).

Dylan Oxford

Hey Frank, would you have an ecig brand you’d recommend looking into?

Southern Boy Teas

I did a LOT of research, and it seems that the people who have been with it the longest end up going to a drip system as opposed to the cartomizers or tanks. There are lots of different “brands” but they all use basically the same parts. It seems the most popular is the eGo style—the batteries appear to last longer. The “passthrough” versions allow you to charge the battery through your usb cable WHILE you vape. In short, if I was just starting out again, I would probably go with something like this kit: http://www.empiremods.com/product_p/egopasskit.htm It’s also a really good price. Of course, then you would need some ejuice. Google could help you there. There are hundreds of flavors and configurations. You probably want something with a 50/50 PG/VG split. If this sounds like greek, don’t worry. There are tons of resources online for researching it, but the guidelines I’ve given here should get anyone off to a good start. Also on the ejuice, consider how much nicotine you want. You can typically find anything from 2mg to 24mg, maybe more. Depending on how much you smoke, start higher and if you want to, cut down later, but don’t push yourself and end up going back to “analogs” (real cigarettes—I love that term for them). You might pick up a few smaller bottles of different flavors in different nicotine strengths to see what suits you. I started with 24mg, and am now down to 12mg, but I may end up getting some 24mg to drip now and then when I’m really feeling the need for it. (Like my Dr. told me, without the other poisons, int he cigarette, it’s not the worst thing). Hope that helps. Another great source for information: http://www.e-cigarette-forum.com/forum/


I actually have an e-cig, it’s one of the relatively cheap Njoy ones you see at gas stations. It seems to work well enough it’s just that the habit I’m accustomed to is chewing tobacco, so it’s a different kind of oral fixation. Believe it or not it’s really hard for me to get used to inhaling nicotine rather than oral absorbtion because I’m just so used to doing it that way. And for me, I think it’s important that I quit nicotine altogether because I have high blood pressure and a strong family history of heart disease and stroke.


By the way, thanks for the encouragement guys. I’ve kicked other, more serious addictions and this one is actually the hardest one I’ve yet to face.

Southern Boy Teas

Funny, that’s why the GUM didn’t work for me. I was too used to inhaling it. Maybe nicotine gum would help. In any event, good luck. Keep at it. It’s worth it.


Thanks for the info Frank. Apologies to * Scatterbrain* for hijacking your comments. :D


Full support for you Scatterbrain! It’s a daily struggle I know, but one worth fighting =)


Don’t give up!!!

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1379 tasting notes

I haven’t been online for a while but should be getting back to normal very shortly. Whilst doing my CBT for a motorbike I had an accident that has left me bed ridden for almost a week. Whilst turning a corner I turned the bike too much and fell down with the bike landing on top of me. As a result my left leg is very badly bruised and swollen leaving me not able to walk and my back has succumbed to further damage meaning I couldn’t move really at all.

I am alright through, my leg is still bruised and my back is still stiff and painful but I can at least walk around briefly now. :) I have another bike lesson on 27th July so hopefully I will pass the test this time.

Not had many teas since it’s a 30 degree c at least heatwave in the UK right now and well the fact that I couldn’t walk means I couldn’t make any tea. I missed it so much.

This is my first tea to celebrate being able to walk and drink again. Yahooooo!

Side note – A spoon of sugar really finishes this tea off beautifully.


Your accident sounds awful!! Glad to see you are on the mend. Heal well and Good Luck with your test!!


That’s the spirit. Get back on that bike and ride!


Glad to hear you are on the mend!

Terri HarpLady

One time I dropped my Harley right in front of a bunch of old seasoned bikers in the motorcycle shop parking lot. Luckily I wasn’t injured, but I felt humiliated. Several of those guys came running up & helped me pick it up, & one guy said, “Don’t worry, honey, everyone of us has dropped his bike at least 2 or 3 times”.

Sorry to hear you got hurt. I admire your guts to stick with it!


Good to hear you are mending! Stay safe out there!


oh man i’m so sorry to hear this but glad that you’re ok and on the mend!


Wow. Glad you are healing, and kudos to you for not giving up!


Sil – the story reminds me of that motorcycle accident you, me, and Indigobloom saw as we were walking to find supper in downtown Toronto. Eep!

KittyLovesTea – glad to hear you will be ok!

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545 tasting notes

On the fourth day of Christmas, 52teas gave to me Earl Black.

(Backlogging. 4 days ago. Monday afternoon.)

Upon cutting open the packet, I immediately identified the smell as Black Current Bai Mu Dan and thought we had gotten that before I pulled out the label. Taste-wise, the first and third steeps tasted pretty much identical to what I remember the Black Current Bai Mu Dan tasting like. The second steep I thought I could taste some citrus from the bergamot. The fourth steep was close to too watery to be drinkable and I prolly wouldn’t do again.

I’m rating this 74 same as the Black Current Bai Mu Dan.

2nd steep: 2 mins, 150 F
3rd steep: 3 mins, 160 F
4th steep: 4 mins, 160 F

150 °F / 65 °C 1 min, 0 sec

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357 tasting notes

I’m finishing this off from the 12 days of tea.

I do enjoy white teas when I drink them, but I tend to reach for them with less exuberance than black tea. This one is light, fruity, and refreshing. I enjoy the Black Currant flavor, and if I were more of a white tea lover, this would probably rank higher on my rating scale. This is better than I remember; (probably because I don’t have a cold today) I’m catching more of the subtleties of the tea. If a taste could be described as “pretty”, this tea would qualify.

I’ve noticed that this tea periodically goes on sale for half off which is a stellar deal, so if I catch this on sale while I’m ordering other teas, I would probably throw this one in as well. Upping my rating a smidge.

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639 tasting notes

52teas 12 Days of Christmas Sampler 2012 – Day 4

Sorry I’ve been M.I.A. I went to my fiancé’s parent’s house for Christmas, and I don’t like to travel with my teas. So I’ll be completing the rest of this sampler pretty late. But better late than never!! I haven’t looked at 52teas’ site or Steepster for over a week. Therefore, the rest of these teas are going to be a surprise to me! :)

Oooh, I haven’t had this one before! The dry leaf aroma is juicy black currant. I don’t actually smell any bergamot, which is surprising. Bergamot usually lets itself be KNOWN! This just smells like sugary candy. Yum!

The brewed tea aroma is black currant and white tea. There’s still no bergamot to be found. Even in the taste! All I can smell and taste is juicy black currant and white tea. To me, that’s enough. I LOVE this tea!! But I’m just left feeling confused…where’s the berg???

The white tea base is naturally sweet but not too much so. Even though it smells sugary, it doesn’t taste sugary. Rather, it’s a sweet and sour tea. Really unique and very delicious. But I have to lower it a few points because there’s just no bergamot to be found anywhere, and this is supposed to be an Earl Grey white. And I’m left wondering what the Black Currant Bai Mu Dan tastes like…

175 °F / 79 °C 2 min, 30 sec

Black Currant Bai Mu Dan tastes like this tea. I also didn’t taste any bergamot whatsoever, and would have guessed that this was BCBMD based on the aroma/flavour.


I’m glad I’m not the only one!


Happy belated 12 days of tea :)


Thanks!! :D


I’m enjoying reading yours late since I’ve been MIA too and in a way, still expecting there to be more reviews of others. It feels like it should be more than just 12 days!


I agree. It should be a full advent calendar of 25 days!!!!! But man, that’d be a lot of tea. I have trouble as it is just getting through the 12. :) But I’m glad we can do it late together! It’s definitely more fun sharing the experience with others.


I actually didn’t bother buying it, and in a way, I’m glad I didn’t now that they’ve all been revealed since I already have the ones in there that I really love, and based on the reviews of the ones I wasn’t sure of before, still sounds like I wouldn’t like them. But I hope you’ll enjoy the ride!


I completely agree with you actually. I have yet to try one that I want that I hadn’t already purchased.

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2201 tasting notes

I haven’t ordered from 52teas in a while, but when Red Leaf Tea offered a coupon for people who ordered from 52teas, I decided to take a perusal of their stocks to see if anything interested me. I do actually remember this one being released but I didn’t look closely and I assumed it was an Earl Grey black tea. I haven’t had the best successes with 52teas black teas in the past, so I didn’t give it a second glance until the other day when I noticed it was actually a black currant-bergamot white tea. Well then! I love bergamot, I love black currant, and a white tea seemed a decent base. I was excited.

The dry tea, however, smells disconcertingly like grape medicine. Hmm. The tea didn’t come with steeping parameters, and I don’t have a “default” for white teas because I don’t make them all that often, so I guesstimated some parameters after looking around a bit. The steeped tea also, unfortunately, smells like grape medicine. The taste is… weird. I have to say I don’t get bergamot or black currant out of this. It is oddly sweet (like really sweet!). Ok maybe some black currant candy flavors, but they are more grapey than curranty to me (and I don’t like grape flavoring). Meh. I can’t get the grape medicine out of my nose. And that sweetness, like there’s some kind of sweet additive, is not helping. It’s not undrinkable, but I am not likely to want another cup.

Oh well, onto the swap list it goes.

180 °F / 82 °C 2 min, 0 sec

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1220 tasting notes

fourth day of Christmas~~

I do not like how this one smells, which is kind of weird because I love black currant. I guess it’s the bergamot combined with it, because my initial thought was like day 3: citrus.

I agree with Dinosara, it’s definitely more like candy than a black currant flavor. It doesn’t remind me very much of black currant, like the black currant bai mu dan from 52 teas (and I believe I have one from ZenTea). It’s just not very enjoyable for me.

I’ve let it cool down now and it’s a bit better, but the floral notes of the white tea kind of make it a bit too much for me. I suppose this works better in the summer but I can’t say I’m really a fan. At least I got to try it, I was tempted many times before about maybe getting a pouch.

1 min, 30 sec

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6107 tasting notes

12 Days of Tea #4! And the first one I had yet to previously sample!

This was one of the teas that I had been wavering on so much about purchasing. However… I’m glad I didn’t. All I got from this was a black currant flavoured white tea. And given that I dislike Black Currant Bai Mu Dan…. I was not impressed. Couldn’t taste bergamot, but the black currant flavour that comes off quite fakey to me would have ruined it anyways. My roommate thought about the same (I noticed it was one she didn’t end up re-steeping).

195 °F / 90 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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1353 tasting notes

Okay, the next tea! Again, I was sceptical as soon as I saw the label.

I almost always am when I see ‘Earl Grey’ and it’s not a black base. Earl Grey is a black tea. The end. Any other base with bergamot is simply bergamot flavoured. But then that’s just personal taste, really. And honestly, it’s also splitting hairs. Yes, I’m fully capable of seeing this myself.

Now, in the past I’ve tended to have a rather rocky relationship with Earl Grey or really most anything bergamot flavoured. Often it turns into a grey, dusty, kind of floral and somewhat attic-y sort of flavour for me, although there have been a few exceptions here. The smoky Earl Grey from Kusmi being a famous example. Gosh, that one is Teh Nom!

I also, these days, have a somewhat rocky relationship with white tea. I had a period where Bai Mu Dan was what I kept on hand as Celebration Tea. These days I get mostly a funny sort of squash-y, cucumber-y flavour profile from it which I don’t really care much for in my tea.

So what we’ve actually got here so far is a tea base I don’t much care for flavoured with a fruit I’m not a fan of.


Well. Minus times minus equals plus, right?

Then there is the black currant. I’ve been fairly fond of black currant flavoured tea for as long as I can remember. That flavouring has never really let me down. On top of that there was a black currant flavoured white tea from 52teas that was extremely pleasant. So looking at it this way I’ve got something which I know to be a hit with some bergamot in it.

Actually in spite of my misgivings about bergamot in general, the idea of the bergamot and black currant combination struck me as rather appealing. I would have just felt more confident about it if it had been on a black base, I think.

Now that I’ve gone around and been ambivalent about this whole thing for a bit, I think I’ve come to the conclusion that I think it sounds pleasant.

The aroma is fairly close to how I remember that black currant flavoured Bai Mu Dan smelling only with a modicum of citrus added to the mix. Well that’s good enough.

The flavour was really much the same way, only it gave me a number of funny associations. First I thought it had a somewhat floral sort of note to it, but that went away pretty quickly. Then I thought it gave me a funny sort of plastic-y association, but that note did not go away. It stayed and after a few sips I was able to pin point where it was coming from.

It’s chewing gum. Not any particular flavour or kind of chewing gum, but that sort of feeling that you get in the mouth when chewing gum. I think it has to do with how the aftertaste is highly fruity and very long, as though it’s somehow sticky and has attached itself to my tastebuds. It’s like I’ve just been eating a lot of black currant and bergamot flavoured sweets. Winegums, maybe. Something that makes the mouth sticky.

And that brings me back to the base again, because now having tasted it, I still think I would have preferred a black base. This white one seems too delicate for this massive amount of fruit, and a black base might have been able to hold it up a bit better.

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15155 tasting notes

Thank you raritea for this sample!

So truth be told I don’t think I’ve ever had “normal” earl grey. I may have had one other variant of earl grey but from what I recall there was a hell of a lot of bergamot in it. This tea though? I actually quite enjoy the balance between the black currant and the bergamot. I Think I’d prefer drinking this one over franks black currant bai mu Dan. :) I had this first thing in the morning though I generally prefer straight black tea because I have a ton of running around to do. My parents have decided to come up over Christmas so I need to pick up a few things for them. Not to mention just general shopping before everyone panics because the stores are closing for a whole day!

Good start to the morning :) thanks again raritea!

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