Difference between Earl Grey and English breakfast: detailed analysis of tea blends

Indulge in the rich and cultural histories of English Breakfast tea and Earl Grey tea! Not only are they beloved across the world, but they also offer distinctive flavor profiles that are sure to delight your taste buds.

Discover the unique ingredients that make each tea stand out and learn more about their fascinating backstories with the British Empire. Don’t miss out on this exciting glimpse into the world of traditional black English tea and bergamot oil-flavored tea.

Difference between earl grey and English breakfast

Embarking on my journey into the captivating world of tea, I yearned to explore beyond the herbal infusion realm. My introduction to tea was in the heart of England and Wales, which inspired me to begin my journey there.

During my quest for tea enlightenment, I discovered two classic brews that have stood the test of time – these two teas have both been globally renowned for centuries.

So what sets these tea titans apart? Let’s take a closer look!

English Breakfast tea VS Earl Grey tea: what did I pay attention to when analyzing these drinks?

Do you drink a lot of tea and enjoy experimenting with new flavors? There is, however, one thing you absolutely must not miss: the epic showdown between English Breakfast and Earl Grey tea. Each offers something special in terms of flavor and heritage.

Earl Grey is a refreshing, lemony taste with traces of flowery perfume, while English Breakfast is a robust and rich tea, great with milk and sugar to balance the flavors.

When you enjoy a cup of tea, you’re not only satisfying your taste buds; you’re also appreciating the cultural contribution that the East India Company and British mercantilism made to the world of tea.

Breakfast tea

So unwind with an English Breakfast or Earl Grey tea and take your taste buds on an adventure.

The irony that English Breakfast tea, despite its name, is an American creation is not lost on anyone. It’s as if we’ve invented our own version of what a perfect cup of English breakfast tea should taste like.

Nonetheless, Earl Grey is the genuine article, a traditional English tea mix. These teas, despite their distinctions, have become widely consumed in many countries. This demonstrates once again that there are no borders for good tea.

English Breakfast tea VS Earl Grey tea: Taste characteristics

Discover a world of rich and bold black teas blended with English Breakfast and Earl Grey.

English Breakfast brings a harmonious and stimulating taste profile, crafting a unique aroma and flavor that will invigorate your senses. This delicious blend is not just any flavored tea, but a delightful combination of a few select black tea varieties.

Meanwhile, Earl Grey tempts your palate with a naturally gentle and refined flavor that’s perfect for unwinding after a busy day. Enjoy the best of both worlds with these classic teas that are sure to satisfy any tea lover.

Difference between earl grey and English breakfast table

Caffeine characteristics

While black teas generally contain between 20-60mg of caffeine, a recent study actually measured the caffeine content of popular commercial brands.

According to their findings, a 6oz cup of these two teas steeped for just 5 minutes will contain around 25mg of caffeine. It’s interesting to note that English Breakfast tea is known to be higher in caffeine than Earl Grey, but it ultimately depends on the blend of leaves used.

If you prefer Earl Grey tea with added ingredients such as flowers, it will probably have less caffeine.

So, next time you’re reaching for a tea bags, keep these differences in mind and adjust accordingly to get the perfect amount of caffeine to start your day!

Varieties of subtypes

Did you know that you can drink English breakfast tea in another form? This type has several subtypes, which we will examine in more detail.

  • Did you know that there are two distinct varieties of English Breakfast tea that rival one other for popularity? The robust flavor of Assam gives Scottish Breakfast Tea its name. Yet, for those who prefer a more robust and full-bodied flavor, Irish Breakfast Tea is a close second. Irish Breakfast is the most popular choice among the three blends. Which mixture best describes you? The intensity of aroma and flavor can be adjusted to suit individual tastes. Try one of these noble black teas and rediscover the joys of morning mealtime.
  • You needn’t look any further than Earl Grey tea, which comes in five distinct varieties. Herbal Rooibos Earl Grey is a great decaf choice with sweet overtones of cranberry, while both Lady Grey and Russian Grey offer subtle tweaks on the original blend with added citrus flavors. French Grey and London Fog Earl Grey are two more refined options. There’s an Earl Grey tea out there that’ll satisfy any palate.

In the table below, I have tried to collect the main distinguishing characteristics of these two types of black tea.

If you want to delve even further into black tea theory, then I recommend you read on. We will look at each species in more detail.

English Breakfast Tea: what is this tea and why is it so popular?

Discover the fascinating origins of English Breakfast tea, a popular black tea blend known for its robust, full-bodied flavor and rich, creamy profile when paired with milk and sugar.

English Breakfast tea 2

A unique blend of teas sourced from Assam, Ceylon, and Kenya, this classic brew has a distinct honey-and-toast aroma with subtle floral undertones that make it the perfect complement to savory breakfast foods.

Did you know that the name “English Breakfast” was actually coined by American colonists to differentiate it from their own homegrown most popular tea blends?

Ultimately, a cup of English Breakfast tea is a delicious way to start your day with a touch of elegance and tradition.

There is an English breakfast blend:

  • Start your mornings off strong with Irish Breakfast Tea, a blend that packs a punch thanks to the dominant Assam tea and added black tea content. How much caffeine you get is up to your brewing skills, but trust us, you won’t want to skip this essential part of any perfect breakfast.
  • Awaken your senses with the bold and robust flavor of Scottish Breakfast Tea! This blend packs a punch with a hearty and satisfying taste that will leave you feeling energized and ready to conquer the day. Made with mostly Assam tea, it has a slight edge that borders bitterness- perfect for those who crave a strong taste. If you’re not a coffee drinker, this tea is a great alternative to start your day!
varieties of English Breakfast tea

The history of English breakfast tea

This classic blend has been enjoyed for centuries and can include a variety of black teas. Known as “breakfast tea” in England and other parts of the world, it’s no surprise that wherever the British Empire went, so did its love for tea at breakfast.

Did you know that the famous English Breakfast tea blend actually originated from Chinese black teas? However, due to the Chinese Opium Wars, the tea embargo forced suppliers to explore other sources of tea, such as Ceylon and Assam.

Eventually, Mr. Richard Davies of the Canton Tea Company in New York created the first official English Breakfast tea blend. This blend included a mixture of congou tea from the Fujian province, Golden Orange Pekoe tea, and Pouchong tea, all packaged in a fancy box. It’s no surprise that Davies claimed that it was the most popular tea in England.

Davies accidentally stumbled upon the perfect tea blend that soon became the talk of England and the world! Davies’ blend was so famous that competitors went as far as reverse-engineering it and creating their own varieties.

Today, you can enjoy variations of Davies’ English Breakfast tea blend from numerous tea companies worldwide.

Health benefits of English Breakfast tea

This brewed tea is packed with antioxidants that can help prevent diseases like heart stroke, diabetes, and cancer by protecting your cells from damage.

Plus, with zero calories, fat, cholesterol, carbohydrates, and protein, you can be drinking English breakfast tea any time of day. But it’s not just your body that benefits from this tea – your gut health also plays a crucial role in your overall health, and drinking breakfast tea can help protect it. And thanks to the amino acid L-theanine found in black teas, you’ll also notice improved focus and alertness.

And thanks to the polyphenols found in this beloved beverage, the spread of cancer cells can be reduced, cancer cell growth is regulated, and the development of new cancer cells is decreased.

Earl Grey Tea: what is this tea and why is it so popular?

Have you ever tried Earl Grey tea? It’s a delicious black tea blend infused with bergamot oil, a fragrant citrus fruit that gives it a unique and refreshing taste.

Earl Grey tea was originally made from Chinese Keemun teas, but over the years, it has evolved with the addition of Ceylon tea.

Now, many people choose to savor Earl Grey without milk or sugar for its subtle yet uplifting flavors.

Earl Grey

Infused with the strong aromas of bergamot and citrus, this tea is sure to awaken your senses and leave you feeling rejuvenated. Traditionally consumed without any additives, this light and flavorful black tea are perfect for anyone looking for a refreshing and calming afternoon pick-me-up.

And the best part? Earl Grey isn’t just limited to black tea blends anymore. With more and more contemporary mixtures incorporating green, oolong, and white tea becoming popular, the possibilities for this delightful blend are endless!

Looking for a tea that’s not your average Earl Grey? Try Lady Grey tea – a twist on traditional Earl Grey that boasts a lighter flavor thanks to the addition of lemon and orange peel.

Interestingly, this blend was created specifically for a Nordic audience who found classic Earl Grey too strong.

But that’s not all – Earl Grey flavor has become so popular that it’s now being used beyond the teacup. From savory sauces to chocolates, this flavor is taking the culinary world by storm! Try infusing stock with tea for a unique twist or incorporating Earl Grey into your favorite creamy desserts for a tea-infused treat.

There are varieties of Earl Grey tea:

  • Indulge in a delightful twist to the classic Earl Grey with our Russian Earl Grey blend, bursting with zesty citrus flavors! Get ready to savor a blend of bergamot, lemon, orange, and cornflower petals or lemongrass (depending on the brewer’s expertise) that will take your taste buds on a journey through time and space. This aromatic cup of Russian Earl grey tea is perfect for adding a refreshing touch to your day or for moments when you need a citrusy pick-me-up.
  • Rooibos Earl Grey: this unique blend swaps out traditional black tea leaves for tangy and flavorful rooibos tea leaves, grown high up in the mountains of South Africa. But don’t worry, this tea is still just as soothing and perfect for unwinding after a long day – and even better, it boasts some sweet notes that are similar to the taste of cranberry. Just make sure to steep it for 5 to 7 minutes, as herbal tea tends to require longer steeping times than black tea.
Herbal Rooibos Earl Grey

The history of Earl Grey Tea

Earl Grey tea, one of the most beloved blends, has a storied and mysterious origin. While Charles Grey, the second Earl Grey and British Prime Minister, lends his name to the tea, the way the bergamot-infused flavor came to be is up for debate. Some say it was a fortunate gift, while others speculate that the mingling of tea and bergamot was a happy accident during transportation.

Did you know that the delightful taste of Earl Grey tea has a complicated history? Back in the 1800s, bergamot was added to tea of poor quality to make it taste better. But the Grey family had a different idea – they created the perfect blend to suit the hard and alkaline water at their ancestral home.

Health benefits of Earl Grey Teas

Looking for a natural way to reduce stress, anxiety, and depression? Look no further than bergamot, which can be found in the delicious brew of Earl Grey tea! This tea also contains catechins, an antioxidant that fights oral infections and promotes strong teeth and gums.

Earl Grey tea leaves

Plus, the caffeine in Earl Grey can give you a morning energy boost without the jitters of coffee. But that’s not all – the citrusy bergamot essential oil also helps break down calories and may aid in weight loss, while warding off free radicals and reducing the risk of cancer.

Read also:

Does the type of black tea matter, and how might that affect the taste of the drink?

Did you know that the different types of black tea used in English Breakfast and Earl Grey teas come from various regions of the world? This leads to a variation in flavor that is unique to each tea. While it might be difficult for some palates to differentiate between them, the microclimate and soil conditions of each region contribute to their distinct taste profiles.

I suggest you get acquainted with the most common types of black tea used for these two blends:

  • Indulge in the beauty of Keemun, a Chinese black tea that boasts an enticing aroma and a bold red hue. Savor the smooth taste that has made this ancient tea a staple in English Breakfast and Earl Grey blends.
  • Congou. Did you know that the term congou has an interesting history dating back to the 18th century? Initially, it was the Romanization of the term gongfu, which was used to describe the meticulous process of twisting tea leaves into small grains, similar to the discipline of a soldier.
  • You may have heard of Orange Pekoe tea – that’s the one with a fancy name that makes you wonder if there’s an orange flavor in it. But let me tell you, Pekoe has nothing to do with oranges! It actually refers to the highest quality grade of black tea you can get. And the “orange” part of the name? Well, it’s believed to have been added because of its association with the Dutch royal family, the House of Orange.
  • The secret ingredient that gives English Breakfast tea its delightful buttery, sweet, and floral aroma: Pouchong tea! This unique oolong tea has been slightly fermented to bring out its exquisite flavor, making it the perfect addition to any tea blend.
  • Assam tea: this black tea originates from the lush region of Assam in India, where it is grown at sea level. Its signature malty taste and bold color are a result of the tea’s indigenous roots and tropical climate.
  • Ceylon tea – a delightful black tea that thrives in the picturesque peaks of Sri Lanka’s high-altitude mountains! With a bright, honey-colored infusion and a refreshing, light flavor, this tea is sure to awaken your senses. And did you know that there are also darker varieties grown in the lower regions of the country, offering a bolder taste?
  • Since the early 1900s, Kenyan tea has been grown as a cash crop, and today the majority of Kenyan tea is made using the unique “crush, tear, and curl” method. This technique is perfect for black tea blends, like the classic English Breakfast tea.

Did you know that the flavor of black tea can vary from region to region and even within a single generation of cultivating? It’s true! Factors like weather patterns and environment play a significant role in creating subtle distinctions in taste, making each harvest of black tea unique.

Novice tea drinkers may have trouble picking up on these nuances, but experienced enthusiasts know the difference is there, just waiting to be savored.

Confronting Tastes: Which is Better?

Now that we’ve got the basics down, let’s explore the fascinating world of tea flavors! Get ready to discover the unique tastes and aromas that make each type of tea special.

What does English breakfast tea taste like?

If you’re looking for rich and full-bodied tea, look no further than English Breakfast. This blend of Ceylon, Assam, and Kenyan teas creates a unique taste that packs a punch. And the aroma? Think fresh toast slathered in honey. Trust us, this tea is not for the faint of heart – it pairs perfectly with hearty meals and will give you the energy you need to tackle the day. It’s no wonder it’s earned the name English Breakfast – it’s a meal in a cup!

What does Earl Grey tea taste like?

Get ready to awaken your senses with Earl Grey’s bold and floral fragrance! This tea brings a unique citrus flavor from bergamot orange, paired with the lightest taste of black tea. The scent alone will amplify your taste buds and take your tea experience to the next level.

Summing up by taste

Looking for a tea that’s bold, full-bodied, and packs a flavor punch? English Breakfast tea might be just what you’re looking for! While some tea experts swear by Earl Grey as the superior option, others argue that English Breakfast is the way to go.

This classic tea boasts a rich flavor profile that’s sure to satisfy any tea lover’s cravings. But ultimately, the choice is up to you – as tea blends continue to develop and evolve, there are endless exciting flavors and variations to explore!


Which tea is stronger Earl Grey or English breakfast?

Calling all tea lovers! Get ready for a bold and energizing cup of tea with English Breakfast. This black tea is packed with rich flavors of malt, bittersweet notes, and just the right amount of caffeine. While Earl Grey is also a black tea, it offers a milder taste and smoother texture thanks to its addition of bergamot oil. So, if you’re in the mood for a robust and flavorful brew, go for English Breakfast, and if you prefer a more subtle taste, Earl Grey is the one for you.

Is English breakfast and black tea the same?

Are you a tea lover looking to enjoy a rich and flavorful cup? If so, it’s important to know the difference between English breakfast tea and black tea. While black tea can come from any region in the world, English breakfast tea is a carefully crafted blend of various luxurious black teas from countries like Kenya, Malawi, Assam, China, and Indonesia.
Each uniquely delicious brew boasts a full-bodied and robust taste that pairs perfectly with a splash of milk and sugar.

What is the difference between English breakfast tea and regular tea?

Discover the delightful world of English Breakfast tea! A classic blend of Assam, Ceylon, and Kenyan teas, this brew has a robust flavor that pairs perfectly with your morning meal.
But what sets it apart from regular black tea?
Well, for starters, English Breakfast is a carefully curated masterpiece of different teas, while regular black tea can be any unflavored variant.
Think of it as a delicious symphony of flavors that wakes up your taste buds with each sip. On the other hand, regular black tea is a lighter option that can be savored whenever you want. So, whether you’re looking for a bold taste or a gentle pick-me-up, there’s a perfect black tea option for every occasion!
Discover the perfect cup of tea based on your Flavor-Preferences and the time of day! If you crave bold, invigorating sips then you need to try English Breakfast. Or, if you’re more mellow in the mornings, Regular Black Tea may be your preferred option.

How much caffeine is in Earl Grey vs English breakfast?

Tea Time: Let’s Talk Caffeine!
Did you know that the caffeine content in tea is highly dependent on the type of tea and brewing method? For instance, Earl Grey and English breakfast tea usually contain around 25-50 milligrams of caffeine per cup, but this can vary based on strength and steeping time.
If you’re comparing tea to coffee, keep in mind that an 8-ounce brewed coffee typically has 95 milligrams of caffeine, making tea a great option for those who want a lower dose of caffeine.


If you’re looking for a tea that is bold and flavorful, English Breakfast is the way to go. On the other hand, if you prefer something milder with a hint of citrus flavor, Earl Grey is your best bet. Both teas have their own unique flavors and aromas, so it’s up to you to decide which one suits your taste buds better. No matter which one you choose, both Earl Grey and English Breakfast are sure to provide an enjoyable cup of tea.

Helena Tasty

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