Info on Rooibos (Herbal) – Part 1 of 2

Rooibos is part of the legume family and grows in South Africa.

The nice flavor of Rooibos (Aspalathus Linearis) and oddly enough the generic Greek name comes from the plant called “Calicotome Villosa, aspalathos”.

The linear leaves is the structure of the leaves (needle-like) and this is where the word Linearis comes into the plant name.

This tea is not a regular tea but is classified as a Herbal tea. The Dutch are known to call Rooibos as this “Rooibosch”.

In South Africa, Rooibos is grown in the region Western Cape province.

Fermentation Rooibos – the reddish color of the Rooibos has been oxidized and produces a rich flavor. The process is very similar to the procedure of used in Camellia Sensis (Tea). Rooibos (red) can taste like a cup of Vitamins, strong and almost Medicinal or earthy like some Keemun teas.

Un-oxidized Green Rooibos—is more expensive because it is produced same as the Green tea production. The version of Rooibos that is green has a totally different taste and can taste a bit grassy with a malt taste.

In the earlier times of harvesting this herb the plants were damaged because the farmers used axes to harvest the bush and hammers, which left the chopped bush to ferment without using the method of drying them in the sun.

Re-planting the seeds is done in early February and March, then left to grow for a period of 18 months, then the cycle of harvesting begins. The Rooibos plant is then cut & tied and then “milled” to the right size. Placed into rollers to begin the fermentation procedure which brings out the characteristics of the herb. Then processed for Distribution for Export to places around the world.

Reference: Wikipedia & Supplier of Rooibos

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