Saturday, March 30, 2013

The Republic of Tea, Good Hope Vanilla

The Republic of Tea Description:
Tea for Inspiration - Naturally caffeine-free Rooibos is indigenous to the cape region of South Africa, which includes The Cape of Good Hope. We offer you Good Hope Vanilla, a blend of rooibos and sweet, fragrant vanilla beans. This caffeine-free infusion is sweet, satisfying and “good” all day long.

My Review:
I sipped this one as the last cup of the day. This is the bagged version. Technically this is not tea - being a rooibos it is an herbal or tisane (the terms are interchangeable). Rooibos is a South African bush that is dried and oxidized similar to black tea. It is caffeine free.

The taste of rooibos (pronounced roy bus - according to my sources) is really difficult to explain. I asked on Steepster how others describe the taste. Gmathis said, "A little fruity without the fruit flavor? Sharp, sweet roots? You’re right. It’s hard to categorize." JacquelineM added, "I always think of rooibos as “depth” or “heft” or “body” — I have been drinking it flavored these past few years and I’m having a hard time thinking of adjectives to describe it plain (sweet wood?)!" So obviously I am not the only one having a hard time finding words. To me it seems kind of spicy but sweet. The sip can have a harshness that makes me image tasting cedar sawdust (not that I ever have).

So there you have it. Now that you know exactly what rooibos tastes like (ha!) let's see how this version by Republic of Tea fares.

Republic of Tea packages their individual bags in these huge square and colorful envelopes. When you remove the bag it is tagless, round, and flat. They always look disappointingly thin because they contain 1/3 less leaf than most American tea bags. I used just off boiling water and steeped for 4-5 minutes.

What did I think? It is a little strange to say, but apparently my favorite cup from Republic of Tea so far, is not a tea but a rooibos. I don’t drink a lot of rooibos but this one I thought was really pretty good. The tiny bag just maybe did it a favor. The vanilla is not very strong but hits at the perfect amount to take the harsh edge off the late sip and add just enough flavor to be pleasing. This sells for about $10/36 bags, or $0.27/cup. I know it is less than half a can of Coke, but compared to many teas I drink it seems a little high.  If they would cut their prices, I might be tempted to keep this around. If you can buy this locally at a fair price, it is a very nice red tea that you can enjoy late night without worrying about it keeping you awake.

1 comment:

  1. This is indeed so interesting! Hope to try this tea for inspiration so soon. Thanks for sharing this great post!