by kate on September 5th, 2012
This year, for the first time, Canton entered the Soil Association Organic Food Awards. We chose two of our favourite and most popular blends – both blended in house with all organic ingredients: Organic Canton Karma and Organic Earl Grey. Canton Director Edgar, who personally oversaw the creation of our very special earl grey, was particularly excited.
From the beginning, we wanted our earl grey it to be something special, something different from the average cup of earl grey drunk by many people all over the country every afternoon. We know this trusty afternoon beverage is loved by many, but we wanted to offer an alternative for the discerning earl grey drinker.
We started with the base tea. Many earl greys out there are heavily scented, so much so that you can’t taste the flavour of the actual tea. For many this may work in their favour, as the base tea might not be up to scratch, but we wanted something better. We chose a fantastic organic, first flush Darjeeling for our base, knowing that its flavours would complement, rather than be overwhelmed by the added bergamot fragrance.
Next, the bergamot. No synthetic fragrance for our tea, we wanted the best natural flavour to perfectly balance and complement our Darjeeling base. And we found it: Pure essential oil of Bergamot from Sicily – completely organic, wonderfully heady and refreshing when mixed with our tea. Lastly, we added pretty electric-blue cornflowers (organic, of course) to make the tea look extra special. And finito – our idea of the perfect earl grey was created.
To get the best from this Earl Grey, you need to drink it without milk, and brew it very lightly, for just 45 seconds. That way you can fully appreciate the balanced and complementary flavours of the bright, floral Darjeeling and the citrus bergamot. Its light, bright, and refreshing – and definitely not your typical earl grey.
So, back to the competition. We sat back and waited for the results.
The Earl Grey didn’t win.
The Karma, however, won the Hot Drinks category and this put a smile on all our faces. We celebrated this win in the office and tried not to feel too bad about the earl grey.
Then we found out more results. We discovered we had just lost out on the top prize to the earl grey of a large, well known tea company. We were gutted.
But, our tea had received the ‘Commended by Consumers Award’. We were overjoyed.
Perhaps the judges expected a more traditional ‘perfumed’ taste? Whatever – we won high praise from you folks – our consumers – which is way more important and we say a big Thank You.
We love the fact that people out there drinking our tea appreciate it. We know our earl grey is different; it’s not the typical drink many Britons have come to know and love. And that’s ok – there’s always a place for a comforting old favourite. But now we know there’s a place for our exciting new pretender too. We’re chuffed.
NEXT TIME: We take you through the inspiration behind our Soil Association Award-winning Organic Canton Karma.