Tea: English Breakfast

An English Breakfast from Twinings

Picture of English Breakfast
Style:English Breakfast
# Ratings:20 View All
Product page:English Breakfast

Review of English Breakfast

6 of 102 of 53 of 547 of 100

The golden tag accompanying the bag says, "Over 300 years of experience." To adapt something an old professor of mine used to say: "Experience is only an advantage if you learn and improve. If you stay the same, you might as well have one year of experience repeated 300 times." Given the unimpressive character of this tea, neither bad nor particularly hearty, I get the impression they found a formula that was passably tolerable, that some might even consider fairly good on those cold and wet London winter evenings, built a following based on that formula during a time when few other options existed in little Olde English markets of yore, and persisted with repeating one year of experience every year, ever since.

Bags of this blend arrived at a restaurant table (Cracker Barrel is serving this for now), and despite my unfavorable impression and review of their "loose-leaf" English Breakfast, I figured to take it home to try. I put "loose-leaf" in quotes because that version is ground up finely, to a dry consistency almost indistinguishable from bagged tea. The first thing I noticed was that, unlike other Twinings bagged teas I've had, it was swaddled in a moisture- and air-sealed wrapper, instead of plain paper. Despite that seeming advantage, a slightly stronger than expected dry-bag aroma, and its unexpectedly rich, dark color when poured, the taste left me saying, "nothing special here". It was bland, not very strong, and rather bitter finish and even more bitter aftertaste. Other than that bitterness out of proportion to the base flavor, this tea isn't "unpleasant", but nothing I would run to the store to buy proactively. Also of note: both bags I ultimately used had a 2-mm hole at and below where the string went through...sloppy mechanical packaging, I suspect. I was careful in keeping the top up, so as to not let to many of those finely chopped leaves into the drink.

However, it was slightly stronger and fresher tasting than their loose-leaf version in the red tin, so I'll give it a tad higher overall rating.

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