Origin: Cederberg, South Africa
Harvest: Rooibos seeds are sown between February to March and the seedlings transplanted a few months later. It takes about 18 months before plants can be harvested for the first time. During the summer harvest, the plants are cut to about 30 cm from the ground. After three to five harvests, the Rooibos plantation must be re-established. The harvested shoots are bound into sheaves and cut to less than 4 mm. The green leaves and stems are either bruised and “fermented” in heaps (to produce traditional Rooibos) or immediately dried to prevent oxidation (for green Rooibos). The “fermentation” process involves oxidation, brought about by enzymes naturally present in the plant. During this process the product changes from green to a deep amber colour and develops its distinctive aroma. After fermentation the Rooibos is spread out to dry in the sun. The Rooibos is sorted and graded according to length, colour, flavour and aroma. All Rooibos is steam pasteurized to ensure a product of high microbial quality. (http://www.sarooibos.org.za) Buchu is harvested from October to May. The leaves are picked by skilled individuals who have had the method passed on down through generations in their family. The leaves are dried very quickly to preserve their qualities.
Quality: Rooibos is graded according to it’s colour, flavour, and cut. The highest quality Buchu is harvested in the Fynbos strip which has the ideal weather and climate for the cultivation of Buchu.
Our tea is sold by net weight, and by law, weighed using trade approved scales. Tea is packaged in resealable food safe pouches, or tins if selected as an option. Some teas may be heat sealed and/or vacuum sealed where appropriate to the individual product..
Our tea and tea ware products are shipped in packaging designed to prevent any damage during transit. All our products should reach you in perfect condition. You must notify us immediately upon receipt of goods if they appear to be damaged in any way. All orders will be dispatched within 3 business days, though we always aim to post as soon as possible. Orders placed after 2pm on a Friday, or at weekends will be posted on the next working day. All goods are dispatched by Royal Mail first class, which usually take 1-3 days from date of posting. Please allow up to 14 days for delivery. The Fine Tea Company cannot be held responsible for any loss your incur arising from any postal delay. Postage is usually calculated according to weight of the goods, plus the weight of the packaging. Postage is sometimes calculated on the overall size of the item. The latest latest postage charges can be found here.
Orders placed on the website for places at one of The Fine Tea Company tea tasting experiences will be confirmed by email. You should print the email and bring it with you on the day of the event as this will be your entrance ticket.
Infuse your tea for around 2 minutes for the first infusion. For further infusions add a few seconds on each time according to taste.
Rooibos is enjoyed as a hot or cold beverage without milk, with or without sweeteners. Many South Africans enjoy Rooibos as a hot beverage with milk, sweetened with sugar or honey. Keep a fresh pot of Rooibos warm for hours; it won’t lose its flavour or taste. You can keep a Rooibos infusion in the fridge for up to two weeks and reheat it several times without losing any flavor or developing a bitter after taste.
Rooibos (Aspalathus linearis), a member of the legume family of plants (Fabaceae), is endemic to the mountains of the Cederberg Range in South Africa. As a Fynbos species, it forms part of the natural vegetation of the Cape Floral Kingdom, the smallest and richest of the world’s floral kingdoms, and the only one that is confined to a single country. The plant is a shrub-like bush with green needle-like leaves, and can grow up to a height of 2m. Yellow flowers appear in spring, and the fruit is a small pod with one or two hard seeds.
As a herbal remedy forming part of their cultural heritage, buchu was introduced to early colonists by Khoi pastoralists. Buchu soon made its appearance in Europe, where it was officially listed as a medicine in the British Pharmacopoeia in 1821. From there it found its way to the United States, where by the mid-nineteenth century it had become a popular medicine for the treatment of urinary ailments. Not all shipments reached its shores however, with a number of bales of buchu leaf having been listed on the cargo manifest of the RMS Titanic on it’s final voyage. Buchu is one of the most important herbal medicines emanating from South Africa. Today it is used worldwide in various forms for the treatment of ailments such as cystitis, prostatitis and arthritis, the treatment of bruises, and as a natural diuretic. ( http://www.skimmelberg.co.za/pages/buchu/about-buchu.php)