“ Brand: Hambleden / Type: Herbal Tea / Food quality: Organic food „
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I've read a review on this product criticising the taste. I agree it's not flavoursome but for me that is not what this product is about at all. This product is about what it can do for you in a beneficial sense and if necessary you could add flavouring such as lemon.
This is an organic product in it's basic form and so probably is in a very beneficial form - I am genuinely of the opinion it can help fight colds & flu especially if you take one or preferably two teabags together as your first drink of the day or when you first have symptoms. It's so good that in fact I would sometimes not take too much of it so my immune system would at least have some work to do so it stays in shape!
Also the product is in a form that's easy to take and could be preferable for some people compared to taking elderflower in cordial form.
As a lover not only of herb tea but also of elderflowers I thought the damson packet of elderflower tea bags I saw in the Goodness Direct catalogue could well have my name on them. I am sure they are also available in many good independent health food stores too.
Over the years I have gathered elderflowers to make fritters and wine, and the sight and smell of the newly gathered florets in May really makes me think summer is coming every time I see them. More recently commercial elderflower cordials have become available, which are refreshing and different, so I really was expecting a treat with these.
Made by a firm called Hambleden Herbs these tea bags are one of many teas they make. This organic farm began in 1982 with herb growing, when they became the first organic producer of dried herbs in the country. This was followed by the natural progression into herb teas, which followed 4 years later. Nestled in the village of Hambleden in rural Oxfordshire this company is devoted to ethical farming. The success of the business means they now have to source ingredients from outside as well, but these are carefully chosen.
So to the tea. A few months ago I did buy loose elderflower tea, and my husband and I made this in a lovely tea pot, and we sat in the garden to drink what we thought was going to be pure heaven. It really was unbelievably horrid, and I decided maybe that it was an old batch, but I wasn't sure. This was made by another company called Cotswold. I am sorry to say we had to bin the rest as we just couldn't enjoy it; this is something I never normally do as I can't abide waste, but we had no alternative it was like drinking old sweaty socks.
A few months later I saw these Hambleden tea bags for £1.80 for 20 bags and decided to order them. The box is really lovely, a deep plum shade. It is quite expensive looking and certainly promises a lot. Inside the bags are individually wrapped, which pleased me because I had suspected that the loose tea I had hated before might not have been as fresh as a daisy, so this was a plus point. Again the packaging of the bags was aesthetically good with a white background and a little instruction detailing at the top.
To make they advise placing one bag per person in a warm tea pot, add boiling water and infuse until the right strength is obtained. This is of course an individual preference. Now because hubby had the other loose version, and thought I was trying to poison him, I decided to go it alone for the first drink.
It was absolutely vile. I wish I could say otherwise but it was like drinking pure weeds. There is no elderflower taste at all, just like the loose tea I tried from a different company. I must make the comment that I adore camomile tea, and have many different herbal teas in my pantry, but this one is just horrid. I would say never be lured by the elderflower title, because something happens to the flavour on the way, and it disappears into a hole somewhere leaving a drink which tastes like compost.
I had to test my opinion on hubby in the end but he agreed, the tea bags are not nice, they don't taste of elderflowers and I actually think they are almost impossible to drink. The tea does have a slight smell of something weedy, but not elderflowers. I find this so strange as elderflowers are so floral and I use them a lot especially with gooseberries, which although sour still do not drown out the flavour of the elderflower.
I even tried adding lemon slices but no improvement really other the slight hint of citrus improved the palatability a little. You could also try honey, but I don't like this anyway and to be honest I think it might be a waste.
This view point is in no way disrespectful to the company making this tea as I have many of their other teas at home, which are lovely. I am beginning to think that elderflowers do not make a good tea, whoever makes it.
This is the final time I will be buying any teas made by the infusing of these little flowers, and I wouldn't recommend them, unless of course you want to put off a visitor you maybe don't want to call round again!
They are organic and have never seen any chemicals or additives of any kind, but for me this can't be enough on this occasion to repeat this purchase. I know they are water giving, as all herb teas are, but really this is not for me, I think I would rather dehydrate.
In terms of being therapeutic it is alleged that elderflower tea may help the immune system, ear infections, rheumatic problems and constipation amongst many others. It also has to be remembered that herbs were so important in medicine, before the advances we know about and benefit from today. It doesn't make me want to persevere with these tea bags though, I 'm afraid
I couldn't bring myself to waste this so what I did was a little research on their website at www.hambleden herbs.com where I found a recipe for an elderflower tea loaf. This highly spiced loaf is really lovely and it uses tea made from the bags. I made this yesterday and we all agreed it was a great alternative to the Yorkshire tea loaf I often buy, and it was a fitting end for the bags which really had to go somewhere other than inside a tea pot!
Brand: Hambleden / / Type: Herbal Tea