Over the past year or so, I’ve really come to enjoy the flavour of fennel. So, when Hampstead Fennel and Peppermint tea popped up in my review list, I welcomed it with open arms.
If you’re unfamiliar with the flavour of fennel (and the fennel seeds, which is what often is used for tea blends rather than the bulb itself) then let me describe it in one word: aniseed.
Liquorice, star anise, and fennel seeds all share that same aniseed flavour that, like Marmite, is loved or hated.
With that in mind, let’s start sipping!
Hampstead Fennel Peppermint Tea at a Glance
- Blend: Organic peppermint and fennel with a little liquorice root
- Flavour: Low menthol peppermint tea with a hint of anise sweetness
Hampstead should really name this tea Peppermint and Fennel, rather than the other way around. It’s predominantly a minty tea, with a hint of sweetness and depth from the fennel. It’s not at all overpowering and is actually quite gentle considering the vitality of the two main ingredients. Worth a try!
Full Review – Hampstead Peppermint Fennel Tisane
- Type: Tagged paper filter teabag
- Ingredients: Fennel, peppermint, liquorice root
- Health Benefits: Fight cancer, interact with oestrogen
- Flavour Notes: Peppermint, fennel sweetness
- Aroma: Generic herbs, peppermint sweetness, anise
- Milk or Lemon: Lemon and/or honey, if desired
- Where to Buy: Amazon UK or Hampstead
Just because a tea has a very simple ingredients list doesn’t mean it’s boring. Sometimes less is more, especially when you’re playing with such bold flavours like peppermint and fennel. The dry aroma of Hampstead Fennel and Peppermint is nothing special – a generic herbaceous note with a touch of peppermint sweetness and hint of anise.
Once brewed into a mid-yellow tea colour, the aroma is notably warmer. The generic notes fade away and the peppermint takes centre stage. I’m not detecting any fennel here.
As for the flavour, it’s mostly peppermint – that classic minty fresh flavour. However, there’s not much menthol in the cup. Odd. The fennel adds some anise sweetness, but it’s subtle and adds depth to the peppermint.
Overall, it’s a pleasant and drinkable cup of tea, although it may catch in your throat. I found the texture to be a little coarse.
How to Brew an Herbal Infusion
There’s only one review of this tea on Amazon UK (at the time of writing), and it awards Hampstead Fennel and Peppermint 3 stars because the flavour wasn’t strong enough.
Here’s the solution.
Brew the tea for longer!
With herbal teas, infusions, and tisanes, you can brew the tea for as long as you like to get a bold flavour. 7 minutes, 10 minutes, even 15 minutes isn’t unheard of. Unlike traditional tea made from the Camellia sinensis tea plant, you don’t need to use particular temperatures and brewing times to prevent scalding or damaging the leaf.
So, with this blend, start with 250ml of boiling water per teabag. Let it steep for 3 minutes, then take a sip. If you’re not keen on fennel, this may be adequate. If not, just leave the bag in for longer. Hampstead recommend 3 to 5 minutes (standard operating procedure) but you can go as long as you need.
Why Hampstead Tea Brand?
Hampstead are fast becoming one of my favourite teabag brands in the UK, competing with the likes of Twinings and Pukka. Not only do they use quality ingredients that are certified organic, fairtrade, and grown with biodynamic processes, but they also use great packaging.
The teabag material is unbleached and 100% biodegradable. There’s no plastic anywhere in sight. Just pop it in your food bin and put the paper and box out for recycling.
Health Benefits of Fennel Peppermint Tea
Peppermint has some awesome health benefits – read about those in my guide to peppermint tea. But for this review, I want to focus on fennel seed benefits. According to WebMD, the key component of fennel seeds that has been researched is anethole.
Anethole is reported to fight cancer, particularly breast cancer, and can also mimic oestrogen. It has been used historically for menstrual cramps and also to increase milk production in women. This is great for women, but perhaps not so much for men… especially when you factor in that peppermint can reduce levels of testosterone (see my linked guide above for the source).
The key thing to remember is that you’d need to consume fennel seeds in vast amounts to experience any negative side effects. My advice is to enjoy this cup of tea for what it is – a great flavoursome cuppa – and talk to your doctor if you want to use herbal supplements for any medicinal purposes.
If you are taking any medication currently, you should also talk to your doctor before drinking any herbal tea. The especially potent brews may interact with certain treatments.
This is a tasty peppermint tea with a nice hint of anise that provides depth and sweetness. It’s pleasant to drink and the price is quite low. You can buy this tea directly from Hampstead, but you’ll need to create a large order for free shipping. Alternatively, you can purchase this tea from Amazon instead. Use the link below to go right there.
Although peppermint usually has a cooling effect, this tea was warm and gentle overall. It’s the perfect tea to sip from one of my Scandinavian-Style Ceramic Teacups! They’re new to the Immortal Wordsmith shop and are available with free UK delivery. Shop now so you don’t miss out.