Star anise is technically the fruit of the evergreen tree Illicium verum. However, this fruit is not used as an edible fruit, only as a spice.

What blessing do the authorities determine is the right one to recite before smelling it?

I would think hanosein reiach tov bapeiros because it is a fruit.

I would think borei atzei vesamim because it is an inedible tree part.

I would think borei minei vesamim because it is indeterminable.


1 Answer 1


Star anise, see the comment-section in this article where it is said that the blessing should be בורא עצי בשמים, as found in Shulchan Aruch , Orach Chayim, Siman 216.

For reference - According to Dinonline, a person should make the בורא עשבי בשמים - borei isvei besamim - blessing upon smelling anise (not star anise) because it's a spice.

This, however, only applies when you want to smell the fragrance:

Note that one only makes a berachah upon smelling tea with the intention of enjoying its scent. If one takes the tea to drink it, and only smells the scent inadvertently, one would not make a blessing.

  • 4
    that link is about anise not star anise.
    – Double AA
    Nov 8, 2022 at 13:34
  • I have edited the answer so that the part that deals with "star anise" (which is the question) comes first. Nov 8, 2022 at 20:49
  • That's better indeed!
    – Shmuel
    Nov 8, 2022 at 21:01

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