Rooibos iced tea

We like our rooibos tea and I particularly love a good cup of red espresso or red cappuccino as an alternative to coffee.

For those who just arrived on the planet, welcome. Let me introduce to you rooibos tea.

According to Wikipedia:

Rooibos is usually grown in Cederberg, a small area in the region of the Western Cape province of South Africa.

The leaves are used to make a herbal tea called Rooibos.

In South Africa, it is common to prepare rooibos tea in the same manner as black tea and add milk and sugar to taste. Other methods include a slice of lemon and using honey instead of sugar to sweeten.

Several coffee shops in South Africa have recently begun to sell red espresso, which is concentrated rooibos served and presented in the style of ordinary espresso. This has given rise to rooibos-based variations of coffee drinks such as red lattes and red cappuccinos.

More recently, drinks such as the Cape Town Fog have popped up that is made using rooibos tea steeped in steamed milk with vanilla syrup.

There are of course many other uses for rooibos tea other than just for tea. When I entered the first season of MasterChef South Africa, my audition dish was a rooibos tea smoked ostrich carpaccio. The initial round of judges liked my food, but I fell out at the video audition – something about having a face for radio. But I digress

Some other dishes such as rooibos shortbread, rooibos poached pears, rooibos smoked salmon, ice cream and as a main ingredient in a spare rib marinade.

Recently we stocked up on our Nespresso compatible coffee pods and were pleasantly surprised when Caffeluxe introduced us to their Rooibos Espresso. I also recently found the pods from redespresso – so choices galore.

One of my French colleagues loves to say, “Frankly speaking…”. And frankly speaking, I find these pods produce a much better cup of espresso and cappuccino than what I generally find at coffee shops. Still, few things beat sharing a red cappuccino with a good friend. This is meant to be shared.

The kids love rooibos tea as well and I recently found a recipe on Youtube for Fresh Red – A rooibos iced tea. Simple and easy and uses all of 3 ingredients. Even the kids can make it themselves and we know how they love to be independent.


Doubleshot tea tasting review

Craft Tea in Johannesburg

This is a follow on to the blog post on our visit to Doubleshot.

Teapot at Doubleshot Coffee and tea

On top of some wonderful coffees and craft iced tea, Daniel our host set up a tea tasting for us. All the teas are blended on site by Alain, Master tea and coffee blender and owner of Doubleshot.

Tea Selection at Doubleshot

Tea in Mason Jars

Earl Grey Black Tea

Daniel and I chose four teas together, green tea – Jasmine, black tea – Earl Grey Blue Lady, and two Rooibos – Pineapple & Ginger and Spiced Orange & Chocolate. Doubleshot use the most darling tea pots for tastings – little ceramic pots with a built-in filter, in the form of teeth, in the spout. Each tea is steeped for the optimal amount of time for that tea type. It was rather exciting to watch as Daniel sequentially poured the off-boiling water over the tea leaves and set a timer per pot. A well-orchestrated sequence ensued involving the removal of the tea leaves as each tea reached its brewing prime.

Tea tasting at Doubleshot

Tea steeping art and science

To start off we were enlightened on the art of tea tasting. Who knew there was a particular method?! Daniel explained that we would be expected to slurp the tea loudly with each sip. I always thought drinking tea was a refined occupation! The purpose of this loud slurping is to aerate the tea as much as possible as it enters your mouth. This allows one to make the most of one’s sense of smell, since the majority of our sense of taste is actually derived from our sense of smell. Slurping up tea from a spoon in the middle of a crowded coffee shop without choking and when you have been taught better manners is much harder than it sounds!

Sipping tea

Once past my preconceived ideas on etiquette I was pleasantly surprised by each of the teas. I’m not a fan of green teas, but that Jasmine tea changed my mind! Earl Grey has always been a favourite, although I am accustomed to drinking it with sugar and milk – apparently a tea drinking cardinal sin (ha!). It is also a very pretty tea with bits of dried orange skin and blue corn flowers dotted in between the dark tea leaves.

Pineapple and Rooibos tea

The pineapple and ginger rooibos has lovely fruity tones and would make a delicious summer beverage. We were wowed by the spiced orange and chocolate rooibos tea. A perfect winter tea with its warm chocolatey flavour, I could imagine it as a substitute to hot chocolate, served with milk of course! We ended up buying a bottle each of the Earl Grey Blue Lady and Spiced Orange & Chocolate Rooibos tea leaves to take home.

I have since made my own iced tea beverage for a special birthday dinner using the Spiced Orange & Chocolate Rooibos tea leaves. It was a big hit with my guests!

Iced tea Victoire

We had an absolute blast slurping and savouring this selection of Doubleshot craft teas, the tea tasting is certainly an experience we can recommend. Why not pop by for a cuppa of your favourite blend or try a new mix? You are sure to be enthralled!

Test tube teas

Visit them at:
Offline: 1 Peppermint Place, Corner Juta & Melle Streets, Braamfontein, Johannesburg