Don’t Know Your Rooibos From Your Hibiscus? Herbal Teas – We Can Help!

Shutterstock / CoolR ©

We get it, the world of Herbal tea can be a little overwhelming. Not knowing your Rooibos from your Hibiscus, or not entirely sold on the idea of drinking a cup of Liquorice & Lemon Balm?

Spittoon at the ready, here’s Tetley’s tea tasting tips by Tetley Tea Taster, Yasmin Lee:

1 Slurp before you sip – merely sipping and swallowing your tea will never allow you to fully sample the full herbal flavour. When creating the perfect blends, all Tetley tea tasters adopt a similar routine to wine tasting – slurping in the tea, swirling to coat all taste receptors, before spitting out into a spittoon. Don’t have a spittoon? Don’t worry, the kitchen sink works just as well!

Roobios tea in a white cup

Pic: Shutterstock

2 Boiling water does it best– there’s a general fear that pouring boiling water straight onto your teabag can burn the tea and leave you with a bitter aftertaste, and with some teas this is true. With herbals, you don’t need to worry, pouring freshly boiled water straight onto your tea bag actually provides the best flavour possible!

Transparent electric kettle with boiling water on table in kitchen;

Pic: Shutterstock

3 Check your dates – despite common belief that tea doesn’t expire, this is actually untrue. All teas are hydroscopic, meaning that they absorb any moisture. If they aren’t stored correctly, the tea can be massively compromised. If kept in a dry environment, tea can be kept for around 2 years.

4 Keep on trying – believe it or not, despite there being many different varieties of the same herbal tea flavour out there, no two are the same. Many teas contain over 10 different types of tea, with each expertly blended together to provide a specific taste that is consistent in every cup! So if one is not to your taste, just keep trying, the right one is out there for you!

Cup of hot aromatic tea with lemon balm on wooden table;

Pic: Shutterstock

5 Talk the talk – tea tasting experts have over 200 different ways of describing tea! When tasting Herbal tea, the mostly common areas of description are appearance, aroma, flavour, mouthfeel and aftertaste. When tasting Herbal teas, try and identify what it is you do/don’t like and use that to guide you further towards your favourite flavour.

NEW Tetley Herbals Range, RRP £1.50

The five-strong range is full of simple, natural and reviving Herbal blends, each filled with flavour and naturally caffeine free.

The latest addition to the line-up, and just in time for Christmas, is the Tetley Nutmeg, Rhubarb and Vanilla herbal tea – consider it an oral cupful of Christmas joy. Filled with sweet and spicy flavours, this blend is perfect for snuggling up in the sofa with this festive season.

Tetley Herbals Tea Range

  • Fresh Mint – A sweet, refreshing, and full-flavoured blend of peppermint and spearmint. A perfect palate cleanser or follow on from food – or simply to give you the lift you deserve when you’ve done your bit!
  • Zingy Lemon and Ginger – a blend of get-up-and-go. Zesty & lively lemon, paired with full-flavoured and earthy ginger. A good choice when you are feeling run down – or simply for when the day ahead needs your full attention!
  • Pure Camomile – A full-flavoured infusion with strong herbal and floral notes, yet with a sweet hint of aniseed. A definitive de-stresser, or calmer before sleep.
  • Rose, Rosehip & Hibiscus – A blushing-red, floral celebration, bursting with rose-scented fruitiness.  This bright, aromatic and full-flavoured blend puts the world on pause – just for you.


  • Tetley Pure Chamomile, Zingy Lemon & Ginger, Fresh Mint are all available in Tesco and Asda stores nationwide.
  • Tetley Rose, Rosehip & Hibiscus is available in Asda and in Morrisons from January.
  • NEW Tetley Vanilla, Nutmeg and Rhubarb, available exclusively at Morrisons now.

Moira Chisholm

I'm the Health Editor on My Weekly and am always interested to hear what's new in this fascinating field. I also deal with the gardening, shopping pages, general features, our website content and the Ask Helen problem page. I have a special interest in Christmas content because I'm on the team for Your Best Ever Christmas Magazine, too!