Rooibos: everything you need to known about South Africa’s ‘red tea’ and its benefits

Rooibos, the “Red Bush” of South Africa

Mmmm…red rooibos and its delicate, naturally sweetened taste… The number of fans of this naturally caffeine-free tea from South Africa is growing day by day. This article will tell you all you need to know about organic rooibos and the benefits of this caffeine-free tea.



What is rooibos ?

Did you know you can recognise a redbush-based tea just by looking at it? How? From its short, fine needles. Rooibos (from the Afrikaans for ‘red bush’) is a shrub that is a member of the acacia family with tiny leaves that resemble pine needles. Measuring one to two metres in height, this distinctive shrub only grows in South Africa, the sole country that has the right soil for it to grow. Rooibos is harvested between January and March, which is summertime down in the Southern Hemisphere! The leaves are spread out in the open air and sprayed with water before being dried in the sun. When rooibos leaves are used to make tea, they take on a magnificent magenta colour, similar to that of hibiscus. In some Western countries it’s known as ‘red tea’. That’s not strictly true! Rooibos isn’t made with tea, it’s aa herbal tea. Rooibos is indeed a red' tea, but it contains no caffeine and very small amount of tannins. With this is mind, how do you drink rooibos tea?


benefits of drinking rooibos


How do you drink rooibos tea?

Redbush tea can be enjoyed both hot and cold. Some people prefer a natural rooibos tea, maybe with some cinnamon or lemon zest added; others prefer a fruitier or more spiced blend to vary the flavours. In South Africa, where it is an extremely popular tea, rooibos is often drunk with a splash of milk and sugar. You can leave the tea to brew to your preferred strength or taste for up to 12 minutes. Why? The lack of tannins means that rooibos has a non-astringent flavour and is not bitter either. Rooibos is also a perfect accompaniment to foods such as crêpes, madeleines or semolina cakes.

For something with a more original touch, organic rooibos can also be used in cooking. Our organic almond rooibos can be enjoyed as ice cream. You can find our recipe for Almond rooibos & honey ice cream by Meg and Cook.


How do you choose a rooibos


Why choose rooibos: what are the benefits of drinking rooibos?


The benefits of organic rooibos are well known. Redbush tea can be enjoyed by the whole family at any time of day, with young and old alike loving its sweet nutty taste. A gourmet choice, it is perfect for finishing off a meal on a sweet note: why not try our organic almond rooibos or our organic vanilla rooibos? Indulge in the gourmet delights and benefits of rooibos with Kusmi.

In the evening,s a rooibos can really help you relax and give you a good night’s sleep. That’s why organic rooibos is part of our Lovely Night and Feel Zen organic blends.

Organic rooibos is also packed with anti-oxidant that can help fight cellular ageing. All these benefits will make you want to enjoy a cup of rooibos every day.

How do you choose a rooibos?

For a good cup of rooibos, you first need to use high-quality ingredients. That’s the basis of any tea.




The qualities of the leaves of this African shrub depend on a number of different criteria: sunlight quality, the weather, humidity and methods of harvesting and storage…The taste and intensity of a rooibos tea depends on a number of different factors. It is said that you can tell a good rooibos by its notes of honey, spice and caramel and its woody flavour. Notes of hazelnut or chestnut are also a good indicator. Finally, a good redbush has little or no astringent taste. Everyone has different tastes, of course, and you have to try all the different versions to see which one you like best. You can also tell by looking at the colour of the rooibos itself. A good quality rooibos will usuaually be deep orange when it has been brewed. Want to discover incredible rooibos teas for yourself? Then Kusmi’s delicious organic rooibos blends are the perfect choice for you. At Kusmi all our rooibos blends are organic and made with natural flavourings.

You’ve now got plenty of good reasons to try this ‘red tea’ and let yourself be blown away by its delights.