To make the Earl grey sugar, process tea leaves and 1/2 cup of the sugar until leaves are finely ground.
Preheat the oven to 325°F.
Cut a piece of parchment paper large enough to line a baking tray. Trace an 8-inch circle on the paper then place on baking tray, traced-side down.
For the meringue, place egg whites in a bowl of a stand mixer (or a heatproof bowl) set over a saucepan of gently simmering water to make a double boiler making sure the water does not touch the bottom.
Using a large balloon whisk, gradually whisk in the sugar and Earl Grey sugar. Whisking constantly, heat the egg and sugar mixture until it reads 170°F on a candy thermometer and the mixture starts to froth and sugar dissolves.
Transfer the bowl to the stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment. Whisk the mix on high speed for about 7-8 minutes until stiff peaks form.
Turn the mixer to low, add in the vinegar and corn starch, then whisk on high speed for another minute until well combined.
Place a smidge of the meringue in each corner of the baking sheet to stick down the parchment paper so that it does not move when you are shaping the pavlova.
Spread meringue mixture over the circle on the baking paper. Use a palette knife to smooth the sides and top. Then use the same palette knife, drag the side of the meringue from the bottom upwards into peaks. Repeat around the entire edge.
Place the pavlova in the oven and immediately reduce the temperature to 225°F. Bake the pavlova for 70-75 minutes.
When the pavlova is done baking, without opening the oven door, turn off the oven and allow the pavlova to cool in the oven for a minimum of two hours.
Whip the mascarpone, heavy cream, orange blossom water, and powdered sugar together until thick and smooth and soft peaks form. Refrigerate for 2 hours to firm up.
To make the Earl Grey syrup, combine Earl Grey tea leaves, water, and sugar in a small sauce pan over low heat until the volume is reduced in half. Strain the syrup and discard the solids.
When ready to serve, remove the pavlova from the oven and place on a serving platter. Pile the whipped cream onto the meringue and top with fresh figs. Drizzle Earl Grey syrup over figs. Serve immediately.