There were lots of tea scenes in the past series, and I wonder which tea did they favour? Were I to entertain the imaginary company from Downton Abbey, I believe I would be prepared to cater for any tea preference or variety. Whenever I buy more tea or get for reviewing, my family laughs "Not more tea surely?" Well, there is never enough tea.
Ahmad Tea, renowned for the quality of its teas, is a UK-based family business. It has a lot of fans throughout the world and is available in 68 countries. How impressive is that?! Whenever I visit one of the Oxford stores, frequented by tourists from all over the world, I see just how popular it is as a brand. Incidentally, Ahmad Tea is very popular in Russia, and I do sincerely hope that all the current embargoes and sanctions won't last very long.
I love tea caddies and tins, and have quite a collection. Ahmad Tea tins are varied in style and design. Earl Grey tea caddy is decorated with a painting "Sunday best" by Peter Szumovski. It is a nostalgic vintage image, in the style of the primitivists, very colourful and absolutely charming. Open the tin, and smell the beautiful unmistakable aroma of bergamot. It is a brisk invigorating brew, not overly strong, very smooth and pleasant. I enjoy my Earl Grey with a slice of lemon and a spoon of sugar (or one sweetener tablet). I know many shops serve it with milk, but I truly don't like how milk disguises the taste of bergamot.
Moving even higher in social structure, from Earl Grey to Royal Blend. This black tea (loose) is a combination of finest Darjeeling and Assam teas from Northern India, scented with bergamot flavouring. This is another aromatic tea, energetic and refreshing. Wonderful with a toast and marmalade.
|Only a Royal mug would do for Royal Blend|
English Afternoon (loose tea) comes in another adorable tea caddy decorated with Peter Szumowski artwork called "Teachers Outing". This is a combination of Darjeeling and Assam, with a bergamot flavouring. The bergamot here is not as pronounced as in Earl Grey. It is a full-flavoured brew, with more emphasis on Assam than bergamot so it is not a substitute for Earl Grey, but a variation. Nicely balanced, and goes well with a slice of cake.
As I was testing the teas, and styling the props to make the photos a bit different, my younger son couldn't resist a tempting slice of cake. I told him: "Don't touch anything with your hands until I take a photo". And genius that he is, he thought the mouth doesn't count.
For a full range of teas, visit Ahmad Tea.
Disclosure: I received a selection of Ahmad Tea for the purposes of reviewing. All opinions are mine.