Red Raspberry

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Herbal Tea
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7 Tasting Notes View all

  • “I think this was the one that Fleurdelily sent me. Initially I had a little happy when I saw this, because I like berries in general in tea. I just had the one bag and that turned out to be lucky...” Read full tasting note
  • “A friend of my fiancee came to stay with for a few months over the summer in the spare bedroom until his new apartment was ready. He had been my fiancee’s intern while he was in college, and he...” Read full tasting note
  • “I got this out of the “considering Another Traveling Teabox” teabox. I grabbed the teabag as a simple way to get a sampling in while at work…in my quest to drink all the options while I have the...” Read full tasting note
  • “I had this one during a lovely breakfast at J. Christophers in Atlanta today. I was pleased that they had Harney and Sons teas as I really love Florence. Sadly, I couldn’t have anything caffeinated...” Read full tasting note

From Harney & Sons

This tisane is a mixture of rosehips, hibiscus, raspberry leaves and raspberry flavor that produces a great tasting, great looking tea.

About Harney & Sons View company

Since 1983 Harney & Sons has been the source for fine teas. We travel the globe to find the best teas and accept only the exceptional. We put our years of experience to work to bring you the best Single-Estate teas, and blends beyond compare.

7 Tasting Notes

1353 tasting notes

I think this was the one that Fleurdelily sent me.

Initially I had a little happy when I saw this, because I like berries in general in tea. I just had the one bag and that turned out to be lucky because when I went to make it, I had not seen that it has hibiscus in it.

I cannot abide hibiscus. It tastes like blood. All metallic and sour. Ew.

At first I had a small suspicion when I poured water on it, and it immediately started bleeding a strong, bright red colour. However, while this is a tell-tale hibiscus sign, I have learned that it’s not the only ingredient to do that.

Not until now when I came to post did I see the truth of the matter.

And even if I hadn’t, I would have found out by the aroma. Let’s just say that this does not smell like any raspberry I am willing to eat. It’s all sour and ugh. Luna the Cat appears to agree. This aroma does not give me very high hopes for the flavour.

No, indeed not. It doesn’t taste like a raspberry I am willing to eat either. It doesn’t taste like raspberry at all! It’s just all sour and hibiscus-y. I can’t drink this without making a face, and trust me, I have tried my very best here.

Which leads me to a bit of a rant, frankly. American blends with berries seem to be loaded with hibiscus nine times out of ten. I have even seen people here on Steepster marvel at the fact that berry-flavoured blends without hibiscus even exist. What’s with all the hibiscus, people? It does not taste like berries! Berries are not sour by definition and not all berries taste the same, so if you take the trouble to actually use berry flavouring alongside the hibiscus, why do you insist on making it taste uniformly tart with hibiscus? Do you even have tongues to taste with?
It is possible to make something berry flavoured without letting it even stand next to a hibiscus flower. As far as I can tell this is largely an American phenomenon (do-doo-dodo-do), and I have never ever seen a European fruit or berry blend that contained hibiscus, while still claiming to be a plain fruit blend. Ever. Never ever ever.

Now I realise that this is a raspberry herbal and that implies that there are different sorts of things in it that aren’t tea. Raspberry leaves and raspberry flavouring, this I expected. But rosehip and hibiscus, just to make it red and tart, oh so very tart indeed, this I don’t understand. Does raspberry not taste sufficiently like raspberry on its own?

So chalk this down as a massive disappointment from someone who has been curious about raspberry leaf for sometime and believed she was going to try it at last. I don’t need to try hibiscus. I know what that tastes like.

I’m sorry, Fleurdelily but this one was just not for me at all. To be frank, even if I had seen that it contained hibiscus, I would probably have tried it out anyway because you never know when something otherwise unpleasant suddenly shows up in just the right combination. I had that experience with rooibos that was sent to me and it completely turned my opinion of rooibos upside-down. Just ask Cteresa. I suppose I’m vaguely hoping that the same thing might happen with hibiscus, but I’m not really super-optimistic about it.


Amen, sister. And yes I can vouch about your convertability :) but thing is, with rooibos, if you start just with the plain rooibos base even before adding flavours, you can see a lot of difference in quality. I compare it to wine, some of the rougher nasty stuff is undrinkable. Some of the better stuff is wonderful, smooth and with body. So I think people can be converted to good rooibos, particularly with good flavours if they had never had really good rooibos before, just because it is a different thing.

With hibiscus, if there are grades and quality differences to appreciate, that is beyond me. I can only notice the hibiscus. And it overpowers almost everything (only exceptions I can think of are this very weak french tisane from a supermarket´s own brand and Yumchaa´s Adventure). Though I admit much as I hate hibiscus, I found an exception, there is a very hibiscus very fruity tea which I love as an iced tea.

I think hibiscus is rather a trend. Say 10 years ago, the fruit teas around all seemed to be linden (lime? tilleul?) based – it was traditional here, and a lot of french tisanes still are based that. Though problem is, those are weak! I think Celestial Seasonings and their zinger teas were the first which showed up with it, so yeah maybe it is an american trend. But even now I see a lot, a lot of teas with hibiscus – twinings pink box blends (Almost all horrible. raspberry&echinacea is the least horrible, but not enough raspberry at all), whittard has some, ahmad´s, almost all boxed supermarket no-caffeine teabags which are not the traditional plain tisanes (camomile, mint, lemonbalm, linden, etc) have hibiscus. And buying tea by the weight a lot of times sellers do not even know or care. I always ask to check and the look, smell, color of the tea is almost always a giveaway.

And something I find as horrible, though a bit more subtle – chicory in herbal tisanes. Chicory goes fabulous with coffee. But with tea, not so much! Lipton is even adding it to “plain” tisanes, lemon balm tea (a lovely, clean herb) and they had 2% chicory and it tastes muddy and musty, horrible – there must be some control pannels somewhere telling them to get tea ticker or darker or something. Nevermind the taste!


I don’t think I’ve ever had chicory. Not that I know of anyway. If it’s a coffee-esque sort of flavour, then I probably won’t like it. Coffee-flavoured blends were rather in a while ago and I can’t for the life of me understand why. Anybody who has tried making tea in a thermos that has been used for coffee knows that it’s NOT a good combination. Not even when you actually like coffee! Ugh, even accidentally putting a coffee thermos lid on a tea thermos can ruin the contents.


Chicory is one of those coffee-replacement thingies. But one which IMO goes really well mixed with real coffee and/or this rye drink. I think it´s a pretty old frugal thing – some of my favorite old fashioned tea shops which also sell coffee sell these several mixes, chicory, and rye and mixes of the two. And Nestlé sells and keeps on selling these coffee-cereal mixes in our market – Mokambo, Tofina, Bolero, all about 20% coffee with cereals in different mixes. And Ricoré is still pretty popular in France I think!

Chicory is nice but not in tea. I think Celestial Seasonings (who I blame for hibiscus!) uses it on a lot of their herbal things, when they want to go for something darker more desserty type drinks


I believe chicory was used as a coffee stretcher or coffee replacement during the Occupation in the second world war, actually, now that I think of it. I knew it was ringing some kind of bell. Just wasn’t until you said ‘replacement’ that it fell into place.


Yes, I think chicory and rye and barley were all mixed with coffee to make it “stretch”. And carob was used to make chocolate stretch or total chocolate replacement. The coffee mixes have always been popular even when coffee is abundant and probably cheaper, in a homey way, it´s not such strong coffee and for the taste, lots of people like those mixes. Carob is traditional in a part of Portugal and is even fashionable (it can be great or awful. It´s a really subtle flavour, but the problem is that carob is rather dry so people can not just dump it on a recipe). And nowadays a lot of these things are found out to have health benefits!

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358 tasting notes

A friend of my fiancee came to stay with for a few months over the summer in the spare bedroom until his new apartment was ready. He had been my fiancee’s intern while he was in college, and he graduated in May and got a job with my fiancee’s company. Although I was hesitant about having a random boy living with us, it turned out great and he was so polite and so much fun to have around. Our dogs and cats loved him, and one of our cats mourned for two weeks when he moved out! He came over in January to watch some football and surprised me with two boxes of Harney & Sons teas. He is from Millerton, NY where Harney & Sons is based, and knew of my love for tea, especially Harney & Sons. It was such a thoughtful gesture and I am so glad that we were able to get to know him during his stay with us, and that we all still keep in touch!

Now on to the tea! This is not one that I would’ve chosen for myself because it includes hibiscus, and in the past I haven’t been crazy about the tart flavor of hibiscus. I do like raspberries, though, and other fruity teas. There is really bold scent of raspberries from the teabag, but also a really odd alcohol smell. Thankfully the tea liquor smells more like raspberries. I was expecting this tea to be a red or pink color from the hibiscus, but it is more of a really deep purple color, almost like a pretty eggplant hue. The night that our friend brought this tea I steeped it in my Adagio steeper and then poured it over ice and it was excellent. Tonight is the first time that I am having it hot, and while it’s ok hot, it is far better iced. It has a tart flavor, but a nice raspberry finish that takes away from the hibiscus taste. There is a little bit of a strange artificial note, but adding a little sweetener lessens that and I didn’t notice that at all when I had it iced. I’m glad our friend brought this because I probably would’ve never tried it on my own. I will keep this box around to enjoy iced during the summer and see about buying more after that!

-Standard teabag.
-Teabag smells strongly of fresh raspberries with a hint of alcohol. Tea liquor aroma is of musty raspberries.
-Tea liquor is a dark deep purple red color.
-Tart berry flavor with a sweet raspberry finish.
-Best with sweetener.
-Good tea. Tangy raspberry flavor. Best prepared iced.

Boiling 4 min, 0 sec

I’ve been drinking this a lot lately too — It’s nice with chocolate! Godino’s bakery in Summerfield (north of GSO) serves Harney teabags (about 6-8 flavors) and this or Peach Ginger are my faves so far.

Josie Jade

I can imagine that it would go very well with chocolate, I will have to try it! I’ve not heard of Godfino’s, but I looked at their website and it looks delicious!

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230 tasting notes

I got this out of the “considering Another Traveling Teabox” teabox. I grabbed the teabag as a simple way to get a sampling in while at work…in my quest to drink all the options while I have the box! I

I am in the minority here on steepster, but I do not dislike hibiscus. Some teas with hibiscus can actually be good! (achem, Crimson Nectar by Tea Forte).

Alas, this tea comes off as a generic hibiscus fruit blend. Nothing to exciting nothing super offensive. HOWEVER, as an aside to call this raspberry is a little wrong since there is not really a raspberry note to be found just generic tart berry…

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251 tasting notes

I had this one during a lovely breakfast at J. Christophers in Atlanta today. I was pleased that they had Harney and Sons teas as I really love Florence. Sadly, I couldn’t have anything caffeinated as I needed to go back to sleep before work overnight and this was one of two or three decaf options they had. Anyhow, this tea was in a bag and steeped in boiling water for about four minutes. The bag smelled like a tart berry blend prior to steeping. The steeped tea had a bit of a sour/tangy note in addition to the berry aroma and a deep red color in the mug. The taste was tart, tangy berries with perhaps a hint of apple, if these fruit were completely lacking in sweetness naturally. It wasn’t horribly unpleasant, but could have probably significantly benefited from a sweetener. I don’t drink many herbal teas, but this one was average to me. I’m glad I tried it, but nothing I’d order for myself to sip regularly.

Boiling 4 min, 0 sec

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29 tasting notes

I received this as a gift. It smells significantly floral. It’s taste is first flowery then a hint of raspberry and a peppermint aftertaste. As it cools the peppermint gets stronger. This one is not for me.

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1379 tasting notes

Another lone tea bag that I have yet to sample but really should to clear some space. Not sure whom I accumulated this from but thank you.

Simple instructions on the back of the sachet – Boiling water for 3-5 minutes. I met the steep in the middle and kept the bag in for 4 minutes. Was tempted to add some sugar but will try it in original form first.

The result is a very dark red/purple tea liquid that smells a little musky and earthen yet also with a hint of sour raspberry. Flavour wise this is very weak, the raspberry is heavily watered down and only resembles a shadow of it’s former self in the after taste. It is rather creamy but again it’s so mild that it dissipates within a second or two. The strongest thing about the tea is what I am starting to think is hibiscus or some sort of herb/flower which is causing the earthen flavour which honestly makes the tea seem old and dusty.

It’s not great but it’s drinkable and I would certainly not buy this tea.

Boiling 4 min, 0 sec
Autistic Goblin

I would’ve tossed it. Life is too short for tea that is drinkable and not great. Although every tea does deserve a chance… I’m just glad it wasn’t me!

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2977 tasting notes

For a picnic, we made a pitcher of iced herbal with about 6 or 7 bags of this and a couple CS Raspberry Zingers for a bit more dimension. Yummy, refreshing, no sweetener needed!

Flavors: Raspberry

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