Leaf Type: Rooibos
Where to Buy: t Leaf T
Rooibos combined with cinnamon, cardamom, ginger, pepper, star anise and cloves. Spicy and full of flavour, great with milk or sweetener.
I am not a big fan of rooibos blends. I like them alright. Sometimes, I will find one that I absolutely adore and must keep on hand at all times (such as 52Teas Chocolate Banana Rooibos). But usually, I can take ‘em or leave ‘em.
The reason is the rooibos themselves. The naturally occurring sweetness in rooibos reminds me a bit too much of that funky artificial-sweetener-aftertaste that you might get after drinking a beverage that’s been sweetened with saccharine. I know this because as a kid, that is what things were sweetened with. It’s as if my step-mother had stock in those little saccharine tablets, because we had to put those in our Kool-Aid. It was just … disgusting. Not to mention possibly hazardous to our health!
Since that time I have developed a strong dislike for artificial sweeteners of any kind. And, unfortunately, rooibos has that sort of taste to them.
I am happy to say, though, that with this rooibos chai, I can’t taste that funk! All I can taste is a slightly woodsy, earthy character from the rooibos (as well as some of the spices) and the warm, lively spices! The masala spice blend includes both ginger and pepper which really gives the blend a real kick. The cinnamon does not overwhelm the spices, and there is just a hint of a licorice-like snap to it – courtesy of the star anise.
There is also a faint citrus-y note that gives the blend a nice sweetness, while cardamom and cloves provide a depth of flavor and round out the marsala spices. It is such a delicious tasting chai that you won’t miss the black tea!
I tried this tea first without any sweetener or milk, and it was quite good. Then, I tried it as a latte – I added a dollop of raw honey and frothed up a little warm milk. This really gave a creamy, absolutely dreamy flavor to this tea. But I warn you, once you try it this way, you’ll not want to go back to drinking just plain chai rooibos again! It’s so good!