Leaf Type: Rooibos
Where to Buy: Stash Tea
Rooibos, an antioxidant-rich herb also known as red tea, combines with clove, ginger root and sweet cinnamon to create a unique, caffeine-free sweet and spicy chai.
Learn more about this tisane here.
This Spice Dragon Red Chai Herbal Tea from Stash Tea is another gift that I received over the holidays. It was one that I hadn’t yet tried from Stash, so I was happy to have the opportunity to give it a try.
I steeped this the way I would usually steep a rooibos tisane: using 195°F water and steeping for 10 minutes. With rooibos, if I use boiling water and attempt to steep that long, I get a sort of sour wood like flavor that I don’t find agreeable. But I found by lowering the temperature slightly, I can steep the tisane for 10 minutes to get a whole lot of flavor out of the blend, and not get that weird sour wood taste.
And this isn’t too bad. It’s strongly spiced with cinnamon, and there is some ginger and clove to this too. I find myself missing cardamom here, because I think that it might offer a more well-rounded spice note, but, as it is, it’s tasty.
I taste mostly cinnamon, and it’s a sweet cinnamon – not that red-hot cinnamon candy type of cinnamon. This is a sweeter cinnamon taste. The clove adds a warmth to the cup, but I don’t taste a lot of ginger. Maybe a little more ginger would add a zesty, spicy edge to the cup.
I don’t taste a lot of rooibos flavor here. I do taste a nutty/earthy sort of flavor that I attribute to the rooibos. This nutty taste marries seamlessly with the cinnamon.
This is kind of a “one-note” type of tisane. I taste cinnamon, and a background of clove and hints of nutty rooibos. Every once in a while I detect the peppery note of ginger. But, it isn’t as complex as other rooibos chai blends I’ve tasted. It has less spicy kick to it than some rooibos blends out there. Tasty, but not the best rooibos chai I’ve ever tasted.