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Pukka Lemon, Ginger & Manuka Honey – Good for a Cold

Pukka Lemon, Ginger & Manuka HoneyBrand: Pukka Teas

Flavour: Lemon, Ginger & Manuka Honey

Description: A welcoming cup of spicy sweet organic bliss

Ingredients: Ginger root (32%), licorice root, elderflower, fennel seed, lemon verbena leaf, turmeric root, lemon essential oil, lemon myrtle leaf, whole lemon (4%), manuka honey flavour (2%)

Caffeine Factor: Caffeine-free

Organic Ingredients: 100%

Price Range: £2-3

Bags Per Box: 20

Review: When you first brew this infusion, it smells just like Pukka Three Ginger.  The taste, however, is different.  It’s like Three Ginger, but with a lingering artificial aftertaste, a bit like soursop (probably because of the manuka honey flavouring).  It doesn’t help that it’s chock full of all those lemony plants that are 100% real, yet taste like they were cooked up in a laboratory.

That said, this is probably a good one if you have a cold, to act as an antiseptic and a throat soother; so this blend has its place, even if we don’t fancy it as a casual treat.

Best time of year to drink this: Colder months, when you feel a bit poorly

Best time of day to drink this: Anytime, really – it works as a morning wake-up drink (because of the lemon), but it’s also soothing in the evening


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Yogi Sweet Chai – For People Who Don’t Do Chai

Yogi Sweet Chai - Reviewed by If Teacups Could Talk...Brand: Yogi Tea

Flavour: Sweet Chai

Ingredients: Anise, fennel, liquorice, cardamom, black pepper, cinnamon, ginger, cloves

Caffeine Factor: Caffeine-free

Organic Ingredients: 100%

Price Range: £2-3

Bags Per Box: 17

Review: In taste, this is very similar to Pukka Vanilla Chai, but much sweeter.  We think this infusion fills the market gap of fennel / liquorice / aniseed teas for people who aren’t huge fans of fennel, liquorice or aniseed – because the ingredients list suggests you will be bombarded with those flavours, yet the added spices temper what would otherwise be overwhelming sweetness.

On the other hand, this could be a good one for people who want chai, but don’t like it too strong and might be tempted to add sugar.  Indeed, the aroma of this blend is strongly earthy, rather than spicy; it’s quite gentle from all angles.

In summary, it’s not necessarily our favourite, but we can see others enjoying it.

Best time of year to drink this:  Autumn / winter

Best time of day to drink this: Morning, or after meals as a digestive aid


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Yogi Licorice – So Much More Than Licorice!

Yogi Licorice- Reviewed on If Teacups Could Talk...Brand: Yogi Tea

Flavour: Licorice

Ingredients: Licorice, cinnamon, orange peel, ginger, cardamom, roasted chicory, cloves, orange oil, black pepper, vanilla extract

Caffeine Factor: Caffeine-free

Organic Ingredients: 100%

Price Range: £2-3

Bags Per Box: 17

Review: This is the most deceptively named drink.  Just look at all those ingredients thrown in there with the licorice!  We’re not sure what Yogi were thinking, when they branded this one.

The aroma of this blend is spicy and warming.  The cinnamon calls to mind images of curling up on the sofa under a thick blanket, during winter-time.  As worried as we were by the name, we were excited to try it, once we smelled it brewing.

Due to the ingredients list, we decided to compare the taste of this one to Heath & Heather’s (more sensibly named) Liquorice & Oriental Spices(If you’re wondering why we’re spelling that ingredient two different ways in the same review, it comes down to British vs American spelling and marketing.)

This one is milder than the Heath & Heather offering.  There’s a bit of a kick from the spices, but it’s not very strong.  That said, the spice is just enough to temper the sweetness of the licorice.

All in all, Yogi’s blend is fairly bland – but it’s a nice one for those who don’t like the punchiness of the Heath & Heather infusion (Yogi chose to leave out the cloves, which some people really don’t like).  On the other hand, if you’re drinking these for health benefits, Heath & Heather win out, hands down.

We would also classify the Heath & Heather blend as a great drink for waking the senses, whereas Yogi’s blend is better for relaxing in the evening.  So, there’s a time and a place for each, depending on your mood and taste.

Best time of year to drink this:  Winter

Best time of day to drink this: Evenings


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Pukka Lemon & Mandarin – Not As Bad As We Expected

Pukka Lemon & Mandarin - Reviewed on If Teacups Could Talk...Brand: Pukka Teas

Flavour: Lemon & Madarin

Description: ‘An organic citrus sensation to cheer your senses.’

Ingredients: Licorice root, sweet fennel seed, orange peel, rosehip, hibiscus flower, lemon balm leaf, lemongrass, lemon verbena leaf, lemon myrtle leaf, lemon whole (4%), mandarin essential oil flavour, lemon essential oil flavour (4%)

Caffeine Factor: None

Organic Ingredients: 100%

Price Range: £2-3

Bags Per Box: 20

Our Review: Just look at that ingredients list: it’s every artificial-tasting lemon-like plant thrown into one drink.  Does the thought fill you with as much horror as it did us?

This blend smells just as worrying as the ingredients list looks; like factory-produced lemon sherbet.  Surprisingly, it doesn’t taste as bad as we expected.  It’s sort of warm and pleasant, though it carries a sweet, synthetic-tasting aftertaste.  There might be some people who would enjoy this as a snack tea.

That said, it’s been over three years since we first bought a box of this stuff, and Three Tulsi STILL hasn’t managed to get through it.  She keeps seeing it in the tea cupboard at home and thinking, ‘No, no, not that one,’ and pushing it aside.  It probably ought to be binned, now.  It won’t be purchased again.

Best time of year to drink this: All year round, if you like this sort of thing

Best time of day to drink this: Again, if those lemony plants are to your taste, this is a good all-day tea


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Yogi Heartwarming – Bizarre, Yet Delicious!

Yogi Tea Heartwarming - Reviewed on If Teacups Could Talk...Brand: Yogi Tea

Flavour: Heartwarming

Ingredients: Basil, liquorice, dried lemon juice, orange peel, cinnamon, ginger, chilli pepper, cardamom, cloves, black pepper

Caffeine Factor: Caffeine-free

Organic Ingredients: 100%

Price Range: £2-3

Bags Per Box: 17

Review: As of this writing, there is simply no other blend like this one. Just brewing it, the aroma of pepper and basil jump out at you so strongly that you could be forgiven for thinking someone was cooking pesto spaghetti in the next room.

The taste is a little like pesto, too – strong on the basil and spice – but with a hint of sweetness from the liquorice.  It leaves your mouth feeling refreshed, and it’s strangely pleasant.  We didn’t know what to expect from such an unusual combination of ingredients, but it really works.

This is a great one to have after dinner, to relax you in the evening.  All those ingredients are also very good for you, so we recommend this one the next time you feel a bit run down.

Best time of year to drink this:  Autumn / winter (especially if you have a cold)

Best time of day to drink this: After dinner / evenings


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Pukka Love – Love This Tea, Yes We Do

Pukka LoveBrand: Pukka Teas

Flavour: Love

Description: Organic rose, chamomile & lavender flower tea to warm your heart

Ingredients: Chamomile flower (25%), limeflower, elderflower, marigold petals, liquorice root, rose flower (5%), lavender flower (5%)

Caffeine Factor: Caffeine-free

Organic Ingredients: 100%

Price Range: £2-3

Bags Per Box: 20

Our Review: This one is truly beautiful.  The aroma is subtle but pleasantly floral; the scent of chamomile and lavender steaming out of the cup is instantly relaxing.

Drinking it is just as soothing.  The combination of flavours is ever-so-slightly sweet, which cuts the chamomile taste.  The overall effect is a soft, gentle drink that (as the box promises) warms you from the inside out.

This is a great night-time tea, if you’re not fond of the traditional chamomile and valerian root blends.  We managed to drink several boxes; we couldn’t get enough.  For that reason, we’re rating this a must-have tea for your kitchen cupboard.  Just be sure to have it hot, so the taste of the liquorice doesn’t overpower the rest of the drink.

Best time of year to drink this: All year round.

Best time of day to drink this: Evenings and night-time, to soothe and relax you before bed.


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T2 Vanilla Mint – This Smells AMAZING!

T2-LogoBrand: T2

Flavour: Vanilla Mint

Ingredients: Spearmint, vanilla bean

Caffeine Factor: Caffeine-free

Organic Ingredients: 100%

Price Range: £7.50

Cups Per Box: 40 (approx.)

Review: This – smells – AMAZING.  Strongly spearminty, immediately waking up your senses – and you can see real vanilla bean flecks in the tea!

The taste is just as lovely – soothing, cooling and just delicious.  It has all the freshness and mild sweetness of spearmint, but with a full vanilla kick – and when we say vanilla, we mean proper vanilla, like cracking open a fresh stick and grinding it straight into your drink.

We can’t help but compare it with Twinings Intensely Buttermint.  They are similar in concept, yet very different drinks.  Twinings use peppermint and flavouring to create gentle butterscotch in a cup.  T2 have used just two – very real – ingredients, and opted for a brighter strain of mint, which creates a unique drinking experience.  It’s also not as sweet as the Twinings blend.

That said, you would probably drink this for the same reasons: you want to have it after meals, to cleanse the palate (and even your teeth!); it opens the senses and wakes you up from the inside out; and it’s mellow and deeply relaxing.

For all these reasons, we’re marking this a must-have tea – although it must be noted that you shouldn’t let it cool down too much, because while the spearmint and vanilla blend beautifully when hot, at cooler temperatures they separate and don’t taste as nice.

As ever with T2, remember that although it costs £7.50 a box, each box makes approximately 40 cups of tea; and you can re-brew, stretching it out to more like 80-120 cups.  We love this one so much that we’d be happy to drink 120 cups of it!

Best time of year to drink this: Any time of year

Best time of day to drink this: Mornings (to wake you up), after and between meals (as a snack-substitute and a digestive aid), and evenings (to relax)


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