Tea Flavours Guide

Large Leaf English Breakfast Tea

Brewing Hints: Infuse for 2 – 5 minutes depending on taste in water that has been freshly boiled and allowed to cool.

Leaf: Large Leaf

Origin: India, China

Characteristics: Slightly smokey, smooth, cultured and absolutely delicious!

Serving Suggestions: To be honest, I can drink this tea all day, not just at breakfast time! It is simply a very, very pleasant drink indeed!


Decaffeinated Tea

Brewing Hints: Brew for four to five minutes before serving

Leaf: Small even leaves (Pekoe Fannings)

Origin: Kenya

Characteristics: A bright, brisk pleasantly flavoured, superior quality tea.

Serving Suggestions: A pleasant tea for those who are intolerant to caffeine


Earl Grey Tea

Brewing Hints: Infuse in freshly boiled water for three to five minutes

Leaf: Large, black Leaves

Origin: Anhui Province, China

Characteristics: A light coloured infusion flavoured with Oil of Bergamot possessing a delightful citrus flavour.

Serving Suggestions: Enjoyed with or without milk and as accompaniment to lemon flavoured and creamy cakes and desserts


English Rose (Rose Congou) Tea

Brewing Hints: Infuse in boiling water for three to five minutes

Leaf: Large, black Leaves blended with rose petals

Origin: China

Characteristics: A clear amber infusion with a sweet fragrant taste.

Serving Suggestions: Drink without milk as a refreshing afternoon or evening tea

Chocolate Tea

Brewing Hints: Infuse in boiling water for three to five minutes

Leaf: Large, black Leaves

Origin: China

Characteristics: Large leaf China tea infused with roasted cocoa shells

Serving Suggestions: Drink with or without milk at any time of the day to satisfy those chocolate cravings.

Indian Spiced Chai Tea

Brewing Hints: Brew for four minutes with freshly boiled water or make completely with hot milk.

Leaf: GFOP (Golden Flowery Orange Pekoe)

Origin: Assam in Northern India

Characteristics: Fruity, spicy and invigorating

Serving Suggestions: Ideal on hot day and, if made with milk, will sustain you for the day ahead.

Tea base
The majority of Chai’s in this country tend to either use a CTC or Orthodox Assam examples of these tea we sell at Northern Tea Merchants are Assam Broken Orange Pekoe and Tippy Orthodox Assam. In Kashmir Chai is often brewed with Gunpowder Green Tea.

If you glance through some of the recipes you will see a bewildering array of spices and herbs. The most popular herbs used in traditional Chai blends which are served as street drinks, in restaurants and at home, tend to contain ginger and cardamom and additionally either cinnamon, fennel, peppercorns, nutmeg or cloves, with each region having their own traditional recipe.

In India Buffalo milk is traditionally used and although it can be purchased at certain points of the UK it isn’t generally something you can just walk to the shop and buy, in the rest of the world whole cow milk will add the richness required. Normally one would mix either a quarter or half part of milk with water and bring the liquid to near boiling with the tea, sweetener and spice mix. It is quite ‘done’ to drink Chai without milk and simply use boiling water all the way through.

Traditionally, Chai is a sweet drink. Sweeteners such as white sugar, cane or Muscovado, coconut, palm sugar, agave syrup, Jaggery or honey can all be used and indeed in the right proportions will take away the harshness of some of the spices. However sugar is not an absolute requirement and unsweetened Chai is very popular. Some people use condensed milk instead to add sweetness.

Our Indian Spiced Chai is made to order using water or ‘heavy’ (condensed) milk. Both are delicious, and we are sure that you will enjoy our authentic Chai made either way.

Rooibos (Red Bush) Tea

Brewing Hints: Brew in freshly boiled water for three to four minutes

Leaf: Reddish-brown, jagged leaves

Origin: South Africa

Characteristics: A sharp, pleasing taste with a pale liquor

Serving Suggestions: Drink on its own or with milk. Try before bedtime if you find it difficult to sleep as it is claimed to aid restful sleep.


Lemon and Ginger Blend

Brewing hints: Infuse for 3 to 4 minutes in freshly boiled water.

Leaf: Pieces of lemon peel with ginger root, fennel seeds, rosehip shells, apple and orange peel.

Origin: Spain, India, China, Chile and Nigeria.

Characteristics: A light purple coloured liquor (due to the hibiscus) with a zesty and warming flavour.

Serving suggestions: Drink hot or cold, at any time of the day. Ideal with a salad in the garden, or as a reviving winter drink. Use honey liberally if you are really feeling ‘off it’.

Chamomile Flowers

Brewing Hints: Infuse for 2 – 5 minutes depending on taste in water that has been freshly boiled.

Leaf: Not a leaf, rather the flower head of the Chamomile plant

Origin: Nile Delta, Egypt

Characteristics: Delicate floral flavour

Serving Suggestions: Drink any time of the day. A very calming drink and perfect to drink before bedtime to ease you into a restful night’s sleep.

Gunpowder Green Tea

Brewing Hints: Brew in water that has been boiled and allowed to cool a little. Infuse for three to five minutes.

Leaf: Grey-green rolled leaves that unfurl and acquire a greener hue when infused in hot water

Origin: Zhejiang, China

Characteristics: A slightly cloudy amber liquor with a sweet aroma and a sharp taste.

Serving Suggestions: Drink without milk. Good with savoury foods, or as an after-dinner digestif. Outside Europe, this tea is often drunk with white sugar added to sweeten the stringent brew. It can be particularly pleasant on a hot day.


Lapsang Souchong

Brewing Hints: Brew in freshly boiled water for about two to three minutes

Leaf: Deep black, large, wiry leaves

Origin: Zhejiang and Fujian, China

Characteristics: Rich, strong, smokey, tarry flavour. Hearty and full-bodied

Serving Suggestions: Drink with or without milk. Often enjoyed with lemon juice. Good with smoked salmon and other smoked fish, meat or cheese.

Information from Northern Tea Merchants

Very Berry


Luscious caffeine free organic fruit tea with ruby red liquor and piquant tartness of hibiscus with hints of raspberry, strawberry and elderflower taste. Can be enjoyed both hot or cold.


Hibiscus, raisins, elderberries, raspberries, strawberry bits and natural flavour

How to enjoy this tea

Steep 1tsp per cup for 3-5 mins in 95-100° C water.  Do not add milk. You can add sugar if required.


Tropical Burst


Ambrosial caffeine free fruit tea with a crimson liquor and a subtle pleasant sweetness derived from fruits. The main flavours that stand out are those of Mango with hints of Acai berries. Can be enjoyed both hot or cold.


Apple bits, hibiscus, mango, papaya, rosehip, beetroot, fig, acai bits, maltodextrin, rice flour, citric acid and natural flavours.

How to enjoy this tea

Steep 1tsp per cup for 4-7 mins in 95-100° C water.


Strawberries & Cream


A delightful melange which yields a ruby red liquor infused with the flavours of summer strawberries and a whiff of vanilla. Totally refreshing without being too sweet. Can be enjoyed hot or cold.


Dried apple pieces, strawberry pieces, vanilla pieces, raisins, beetroot, carrot, hibiscus blossoms & natural flavours.

How to enjoy this tea

Steep 1.5 tsp per cup for 4-6 mins in 95-100° C water.

Information from Tea People

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