My first Whittards tea for the blog! And even better, it was given to me by a friend!
So the name ‘regal blend’ doesn’t mean much to me and the word ‘flavourings’ doesn’t give much away either. Undeterred, in I went. I was excited when it started to brew and I got some distinct vanilla whiffs that made me think of custard – could this be the vanilla tea I was hoping Earl Grey Creme would be?
In a word, yes! A lovely black tea with really delicious vanilla flavouring that comes through but isn’t sickly sweet. I imagine this tea would be perfect alongside a scone (or three) at any afternoon tea table.
When I ordered this tea it was more out of curiosity than temptation. I’ve seen a lot of citrus/lemon/ginger teas about so I figured they must be popular for a reason but I wasn’t all too excited about them. I’m more of a hot squash kinda gal when I want something fruity.
Then I lost my voice and this tea became a whole new experiment for me. I thought I’d try it with a smidgen of honey to help my throat and sweeten what I assumed would be quite a bitter tea.
I was honestly surprised by how much I enjoyed this tea. It was zingy, tasty, a bit spicy and, best of all, helped soothe my throat for a short while. I definitely wish I’d bought more than one bag!
How much I would drink this tea whilst in perfect health isn’t clear but I can certainly now see the appeal.
When it comes to Earl Grey, this ain’t my first rodeo. I’ve tried a few types over the years (including the Graze Afternoon Infusion, which I think has Earl Grey in the blend) but never a flavoured one.
This Earl Grey Crème is flavoured with vanilla which I find intriguing. A quick sniff didn’t give much away in terms of what I could expect it to taste like so I dutifully withheld all judgement until the all important taste test.
Now, I do like Earl Grey, so I knew I’d enjoy this cuppa pretty much whatever happened. When it came to drinking it I got a few subtle hints of vanilla which made the tea almost creamy even though I didn’t add milk. The flavour wasn’t especially strong, which is fine, but does mean that this is an Earl Grey first and a vanilla tea very much second.
I was left feeling a bit disappointed. Sure, it was enjoyable as an EG but a plain one would have been just as nice. I don’t think the vanilla was punchy enough to make me go for this over a standard blend. Shame.
Ok ok – I know I’ve said before that I’m probably biased against green tea. I find it both bland and bitter at the same time. But maybe that just means that I haven’t found the right one?
That said – I’m not sure this is it! I think maybe it was a mistake to try this because, next to tea, salted caramel is one of my absolute Favourite Things and green tea, well, isn’t.
It was nice, yeah, and a bit caramel-y, yeah. But also, no surprise here, it’s still a green tea and brings with it that slight bitterness that all green teas I’ve tried thus far seem to have. Overall it just lacks the depth of flavour you’d expect when the words ‘salted’ and ‘caramel’ are part of the equation.
In the rankings of flavoured green teas I’ve tried so far, it goes like this:
- Twinings Cherry Bakewell
- Twinings Salted Caramel
- Twinings Fudge Melts
So – it’s nice. For a green tea. I have a few of these tea bags which I will drink but I don’t think I’ll be rushing out to buy more.
Where to even start with this tea?!
First off – it’s not often you find an interestingly flavoured black tea, usually the base is green or rooibos, so I was quite excited to try this one. Even more so because, having never been a coffee lover, the excitement around the famous Starbucks Pumpkin Spice Latte has been a bit lost on me. So when I saw this tea during one of my
frequent searches for new tea, I just *had* to get some.
As a limited edition blend, now in its fourth year, it was only available to buy in packs, rather than samples. However, that didn’t put me off. If anything, it only served to raise my expectations – surely it must be good if there’s no need to offer a sample?
Well I wasn’t disappointed!
As soon as I opened the pack I knew I was in for a treat. The sweet, heady smells of cinnamon, clove and ginger are instantly comforting and make the 3-4 minute brew time seem like an eternity.
The brewing instructions advised to add milk if preferred and, in my case, it is, so I added a splash. The tea was paler than I expected after adding only a dash of milk so I was a little worried that the flavour might not deliver what the smell had promised. But, boy, did it deliver!
All the flavours are so well balanced and come through without being overpowering, as clove can sometimes be. This really is Autumn in a mug and made me feel all cosy – even when sitting in a brightly lit open plan office.
The Bluebird website describes this tea as “the best spiced pumpkin chai in the UK, fact!”… I can’t disagree!
I’ll be honest – redbush/rooibos tea has never much appealed to me as a caffeine fiend, even though I have several friends who swear by it. So I wasn’t quite sure what to expect from this as, truthfully, it was the ‘caramel velvet’ that sold it more than the ‘redbush’.
The smell whilst brewing was quite strong and malty but enticing in a way I wasn’t expecting. I decided to add milk as I thought it would add to the ‘velvet’ texture I was hoping for, which it did.
Flavour wise it was quite nice – the caramel was very subtle and the tea itself was strong without being overpowering. However, I did find that it left a taste in my mouth for quite a while afterwards. That may be part of the redbush experience but I haven’t tried enough to know! Still, it wasn’t enough to put me off trying more.
Overall it was a nice cup of tea, I think I would buy more for those moments when I want a nice hot drink without the caffeine, but it won’t be my go-to cuppa.
Everything I’ve tried as part of this mission, and a few from life so far. I’ve included links to reviews in case you missed them and links to where you can buy if you’d like to try for yourself.
Birchall Great Rift Breakfast Blend – 10/10 • Review • Buy
Twinings The Full English Breakfast Blend – 9.5/10 • Review
Bluebird Spiced Pumpkin Pie Black Tea – 9/10 • Review • Buy
Twinings Gingerbread Chai Latte – 8.5/10 • Review
Twinings English Strong Breakfast – 8.5/10 • Review
Whittard Regal Blend – 8.5/10 • Review
Graze Afternoon Infusion – 8/10 • Review • Buy
Twinings Assam – 7.5/10 • Review
Twinings Apple and Elderflower Green Tea – 7/10 • Review
Twinings Cherry Bakewell Green Tea – 7/10 • Review
Twinings Citrus Ginger Twist – 7/10 • Review
Clipper Snore and Peace infusion – 6.5/10 • Review • Buy
Twinings Redbush Caramel Velvet – 6.5/10 • Review
Twinings Pure Ceylon – 6/10 • Review
Twinings Superfruity – 5/10 • Review
Bluebird Earl Grey Creme – 4/10 • Review
Twinings Passionfruit Ceylon – 4/10 • Review
Twinings Fudge Melts Green Tea – 3/10 • Review
Twinings Smoky Lapsang – 1/10 • Review
Note: I may earn a small commission from purchases made via some of these links. However, my reviews are completely impartial.