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Cumbrian tea blenders win 2 Stars in the 2018 Great Taste Awards

[C]umbrian tea blenders John Watt & Son have won 2 stars for their own blend of loose tea, Armistice Memorial Blend at this year’s Great Taste Awards. Winners were announced first thing on the 1st of August.

John Watt & Son have been blending tea in Carlisle since 1865 and have seen a resurgence in people buying loose tea over recent years.

Peter Johnston, Director at John Watt & Son, said: “This is the first time we have entered our tea in the Great Taste Awards and delighted to have won 2 stars. It is a completely new blend of tea we have created inspired by the teas available in 1918.”

Mary Randall, manager of John Watt & Son Bank St branch in Carlisle who was involved in its creation, said, “It is a light, all day large leaf tea. It’s not really like any of the blended teas we do already because our house brew is small leaf, so loads stronger, and our breakfast is medium leaf, so a little stronger.”

John Watt and Son Director Carol Johnston with the newly awarded 2 Star Tea outside Bank St branch in Carlisle

Over 500 judges, including specially trained food writers inputting judges’ comments, came together at 65 judging days from March through to early July this year and the likes of John Watt & Son loose tea was judged at their specialist test centres for tea, filter coffee and espresso. The judges, from all corners of the food world, blind-taste the entries equally so you know any product with the Great Taste logo is the sign you can trust when buying food and drink at your local, quality retailer.

The comments by the judges of the Great Taste Awards on the John Watt & Son Armistice Memorial Blend are “Nice quality of leaf. All three anticipated tea elements are present, the teas are true to type. A good, bright, golden all-rounder, which works well with milk.”

Receiving 2-stars Great Taste Award means the product is “outstanding.” “Above and beyond delicious. Less than 15% of entries will achieve this rating.”

This blend hasn’t yet been sold or made public before but will be available to purchase from Friday, 3rd of August at John Watt & Son’s branches on Bank Street and Blackfriars Street in Carlisle and online at

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