* Prices may differ from that shown
I decided to try this for several reasons - I've had other herbal teas with nettle in them and got on with them ok - nettles are reputed to have beneficial effects on the immune system and hormonal balance* - Although I'm no eco-warrior, I like the idea of an ethical approach to the environment and to the workers The simple cardboard box contains 20 unbleached tea bags, joined in pairs. Each teabag contains organic nettles, natural lemon flavour and organic lemon peel. They separate quite easily at the perforations. Easy to make, add boiling water and leave to infuse for 2-5 minutes. I have to admit I wasn't sure what this would taste like - the other nettle teas I have tried, nettle has been a secondary ingredient, not the main one. First thing I noticed was a quite strong aroma of lemon, so I was bit worried that it might be overpowering when I tasted it, but I needn't have worried. The infusion has quite a light, refreshing taste with overtones of lemon. What really surprised me was that I didn't need to sweeten it - I usually find I need a small dash of honey in a fruit infusion to really enjoy it, but not necessary with this one. The Clipper strapline is 'Natural, fair and delicious' and that seems to sum this up perfectly. At this stage, I fully anticipate that I will be buying this again when this first box runs out. This box was £1.29 from the supermarket. ----- ----- ----- ----- ----- ----- ----- ----- ----- ----- ----- ----- ----- ----- ----- ----- ----- ----- ----- ----- ----- ----- *Clipper make no claims with regard to the nettles having health benefits (although they do call it a cleansing infusion), and I haven't been drinking it long enough to hazard an opinion on whether it has made any difference to me. This review is based purely on whether I enjoyed drinking the stuff - and I did!
Being quite an adventurous herb tea drinker I have tried most of them over the years. Some are my absolute favourites such as Summerdown Mint Tea, a beautiful tea made from an old variety of mint, and Sunny Camomile, a Lipton's tea with a lovely box and a delicious flavour. Others have ended up in the bin in record time, such as many of the elderflower teas, which you would expect to be lovely, but are often like drinking old socks. So when I saw Clipper had brought out a tea made from nettles and lemons I had to try it! Part of the reason for this is due to of my daughters, as she is an eco warrior in spirit, and as a student on a tight budget she often using nettles from the hedgerows to make pesto and soup! Clipper are a company devoted to sourcing fair-trade and high quality ingredients and they say "All our organic products are grown in a way that preserves the natural balance of the environment and will help sustain people, wildlife and the land for the future". This outlook really pleases me and so buying this tea really is a pleasure. Clipper had been going now for 25 years and was started by Mike and Lorraine Brehe, who marketed two chests of tea from a single Assam tea estate. The success of this was to be the bedrock of the company who have blossomed from those early days into an brilliant organization, which I think is operating with all the right ethical considerations. With a market which is swapped with competition Clipper have remained loyal to their beliefs and to their customers, refusing to put profit ahead of sustainability. Clipper Nettle and Lemon Tea is one of their infusions range and I purchased mine from Goodness Direct at www.goodnessdirect.co.uk, but the tea is also available in health food stores. I paid £1.19 for 20 bags, which is excellent value for an organic fair-trade product. The box is a subtle affair in a buff shade with a black cup and saucer in which a lemon and nettle leaves are depicted hovering over a cup of the tea. It also tells me the bags are unbleached. The bags are not wrapped in any paper at all and this is of course in line with their ethics, and certainly there are no strings on them either to end up in land fills. The only ingredients in this drink are nettles, natural lemon, and lemon peel and all the ingredients are organic. To make the drink you simply use freshly boiled water and allow to infuse for 2 to 5 minutes before consuming. To enjoy you have to abandon any preconceived ideas about nettles and think of this as a drink inspired by nature! I actually love it, it has a grassy flavour with a lovely clean lemon scent, and is thirst quenching and really lovely. It cleanses the palate and I think it is especially good if you have a sore throat or a head cold. To me it tastes like drinking new mown grass! Now according to Gillian Mckeith nettles are great weight loss aids as they support metabolism, and also have diuretic properties, that is they encourage the body to get rid of excess water. Also according to Gillian nettles are loaded with minerals and iron, and are great for cleansing and may help with hay fever. Now I have never noticed any of these claims, but if they are true this could be a good reason to have the odd cup, but only if you like it! If you like this one there is also "Plain Nettle" and "Peppermint with Nettle" to try in the range. The cardboard package is completely recyclable and so you leave nothing behind, and it isn't covered with plastic as many herb teas are. I rather like this drink, it is a bit weird I have to admit, but it's refreshing and different, and certainly one to look out for. I noticed recently when on the motorway going up to Scotland that they were selling Clipper teas in The Tebay Service Area there, and more recently I have seen them in many tea rooms and farm shops. Some of the more unusual flavours such as this may be difficult to find, but are well worth tracking down! They are cheap so no sting in the tale either! If you have a look on their website you can sign up to become a tea taster, and this will let you enjoy a free sample of their teas in return for some feedback from time to time on new products they may be launching. www.clipper-teas.com