HUGO GREY is our in-house rendition of earl grey. The blend is just 2 ingredients (of the highest quality we could source): malty, scotch-like Yunnan black tea and essential oil of bergamot from southern Italy's Reggio Di Calabria. The tea is massaged by hand in small batches before being dried in our facility in Kansas City, Missouri.
Very few blended teas qualify for our roster. Given the earl grey world is rife with thin, synthetic teas, our aim was to bring as much of the production process into our hands as possible and produce a version with rich body and true balance. To that end we use GAO WEN as the base tea: a smooth, full-bodied black tea co-produced with our Yunnan farmer-partner. We smother this tea with a modest measure of cold-pressed bergamot essential oil, and voila—elevated earl grey.
Freshness is paramount in scented and blended teas. For this reason we produce Hugo Grey on-site and in small lots, repeating the process often to ensure the product is always potent and flavorful. The blend is well-suited to signature drinks (like the classic London Fog), but will produce an easy-drinking cup all its own. Experiment with parameters and steep to your liking; HUGO GREY is forgiving.
notes — grapefruit pith | peat | vibrant
style — blended dianhong ("yunnan red" + bergamot oil)
cultivar — da ye ("big leaf")
region — Simao, Yunnan, China | Kansas City, Missouri, USA
locale — Ma Wei Shan tea farm | North Kansas City
elevation — 1200 meters
producer —Yuanzhen Li | Hugo production team
vintage — summer '20
(use freshly boiled spring water)
[300 ml+ vessel — BOLI, large teapot
5 grams — 205°F (96°C) — 2 minutes
[150 ml- vessel — gaiwan, small teapot]
brewing blended teas in this style is not recommended
[FORMERLY GREY LINE / GRAY LINE]