Contrary to what you might think, herbal tea is not actually tea. Known in the UK as infusions, in France as tisanes and in the USA as simply herbals, “herbal tea” can be either single dried herbs (e.g. peppermint) or blends of various dried plants, seeds, flowers, leaves, roots, bark, stems and fruits, that are then infused in hot water to make a refreshing and healthy drink.
We have finally stopped lecturing customers about why herbal tea is not tea, but as tea purists we have to tell you that there are only six true types of tea. These are categorised as white, green, yellow, oolong, black or dark (pu er) tea, and are made from the young leaves and buds of the tea plant, Camellia Sinensis.
Just like tea from the tea plant, “herbal tea” has a long history. According to legend, it was a Chinese herbalist and emperor, Shennong who discovered tea from the tea plant in 2737 BC. As the story goes, he also tried brewing many different types of herbs as tea – which was fine until one of them killed him instead of curing him!
Rest assured, drinking our selection of herbal tisanes will not lead you to the same fate as Shennong!
Created especially for us, completely natural and made to order in small batches, most of our herbals are caffeine free. They also contain nutrients, vitamins, minerals and antioxidants which vary depending on the blend. The two exceptions to our herbals being caffeine free are “Forever Young” and “Start the Week” which contain mate. As healthy and delicious as they are colourful and beautiful, our small selection of organic fruit teas contains no added flavours or sugars.
All of our herbal and fruit infusions are delicious served hot or cold.
A highlight amongst our single herbs is our organic Greek Mountain Tea “Sidertis Scardica”. We source this directly from a small family farm at 900 metres above sea level on Mount Taygetos in the Peloponnese.
Due to its antioxidant properties, some people say that Greek mountain tea is the new green tea!
Also known as “Shepherd’s Tea”, in Greece it is referred to as tsai tou vounou, translating directly to “tea of the mountain.” Naturally caffeine free, mild and smooth, this delicious herbal infusion would certainly be a beneficial addition to a healthy lifestyle.
Use at least 1 teaspoon of leaves per cup of water, or even more with blends or single herbs that are very big and “fluffy”. Put these in a sieve in your teapot or cup, cover with water that has boiled and once the tisane has steeped for five minutes (or more, depending on how you like your tea), remove the sieve and enjoy your tea.
Herbals are also delicious served chilled. To make a herbal blend as an iced tea, you should put the tea in cold, filtered water and place it in the refrigerator. Allow the tea to steep for an hour or longer, the longer you leave it, the stronger the flavour will be. The result will be a naturally tasting, refreshing iced tea! Alternatively you can make a hot tea, pour it over ice-cubes and cool.