Looking for a floral and comforting black tea to transform your breakfasts? Choose a London Fog, a drink prepared with Earl Grey... with an added twist. The traditional London Fog is an infusion of Earl Grey tea to which honey, vanilla and hot frothed milk are added. At Four O'Clock, it is prepared with maple syrup instead of honey, and lavender is added for its floral notes that blend perfectly with the flavours of Earl Grey. A true delight!

The Origins of the London Fog

Despite what the name suggests, this beverage does not come from London or even England. The London Fog is believed to have originated in Vancouver, British Columbia. The story goes that in 1996, a pregnant customer was looking for an alternative to coffee. The barista would then have swapped the dose of espresso for an infusion of Earl Grey tea in the client's latte.

But London Fog is much more than just a tea with hot milk, as sweet flavours are added to enhance the floral notes of Earl Grey tea.

The complexity of Earl Grey Tea

As tea lovers know, Earl Grey is a milder and more fruity alternative to traditional English black tea. Four O'Clock Earl Grey black tea is made from organic black tea leaves from a small cooperative in South India. The result is a tea delicately flavoured with a natural bergamot aroma, which can be enjoyed on its own or as a latte. With its light citrus aroma, Earl Grey tea should delight your taste buds.

Traditionally, the London Fog is made with honey. For a change, we suggest that you trade in the honey for maple syrup, which will add a wonderful sweet touch. To make a good London Fog, you need to use comforting and soothing flavours that complement each other well. That's why we put vanilla, maple, and even lavender, whose floral aromas go well with the bergamot in the Earl Grey.

How to Obtain Perfectly Frothy Milk?

For your London Fog to be successful, the foamy milk must be creamy and envelop your beverage like a cloud, while blending gently into it. It's not as difficult as you think, you just need to get the right tools: a foamer and the right milk!

If you have an espresso machine, you can use the steam wand, which heats the milk while emulsifying it, to have small fine bubbles and a foam that mixes well with the tea. Electric milk frothers also make it possible to achieve perfect foam every time and in no time. Some models even offer temperature control of the milk and even make it possible to make a cold milk foam. It's ideal for iced lattes!

More economical, manual or battery powered foamers are a good alternative. Just make sure you heat the milk first, in a saucepan or in the microwave.

The next question is which milk to use to obtain the best foam possible. If you use cow's milk, you can use both whole milk and skimmed milk. The foam made with whole milk remains creamy longer and mixes well with the liquid. Skim milk produces a more abundant and aerated foam, but it eventually dries on contact with the air. It is actually the percentage of protein in milk that makes all the difference!

You can also use vegetable milk, such as soy or almond milk. Soy milk, depending on the brands, produces a thick foam, while almond milk, which contains little protein, still produces a thin, but more volatile, foam.

Lavender London Fog Recipe

1. In 1/2 cup (125ml) of boiling water, infuse 2 teabags of Earl Grey tea and 1 teaspoon (5ml) of dried edible lavender for 3 to 4 minutes.

2. Meanwhile, froth 1/4 cup (60 ml) milk with the milk frother of your choice.

3. Remove the tea bags and lavender. Add 1/8 teaspoon (0.5 ml) vanilla essence and 1 teaspoon (5 ml) maple syrup to your infusion.

4. Pour the frothed milk over the tea and carefully place the foamy milk on top.

5. Decorate with dried edible lavender flowers.

More London Fogs to Test!

There are many variations of the London Fog. Some recipes may be useful if you don't have all the ingredients for a traditional London Fog on hand, or if you prefer to use a tea other than Earl Grey.

Oregon Mist

This is a variant for adults only! Use green tea instead of black tea, and pour a little amaretto instead of vanilla syrup. This recipe was reportedly concocted by the Glenwood restaurants in Oregon.

Dublin Fog

This beverage is very similar to the London Fog, but is made with Irish Breakfast Tea.

Cape Town Fog

For this recipe, use Rooibos tea, a caffeine-free tea with a delicate vanilla taste.

Maui Fog

Looking for exoticism in your tea? This recipe uses coconut syrup instead of vanilla syrup.

Nanaimo Mist

For this beverage, almond syrup is used.

London Smog

Originally, London Fog was invented as an alternative to coffee. But if you can't resist your dose of espresso, prepare a London Smog! Follow the London Fog recipe, then add an espresso shot. With black tea and coffee, that should wake you up!

Montreal Fog

Use Yerba Mate, vanilla syrup and hazelnut syrup to make this surprising drink!

Finally, there are so many variations of the London Fog to try that you are encouraged to be inspired by the flavours you prefer. Bergamot, lavender, vanilla, almond and maple syrup blend perfectly with black tea, but other flavours can also enhance it! Take advantage of the cold season to make this comforting drink and surprise your friends with the various existing versions.