The Cape Route from Europe to the Indian Ocean via the Cape of Good Hope was pioneered by the Portuguese explorer navigator Vasco da Gama in 1498, resulting in new maritime routes for trade. Inspired by this history, we created a Rooibos blend with slightly bitter orange, spicy ginger and naturally sweet premium quality Rooibos.
Oranges originate from China
Way before da Gama traveled from Lisbon to India around the tip of South Africa, oranges were eaten in Asia. Native to China, this lovely fruit was first mentioned in Chinese literature in 314 BC. However, Chinese at the time did not know how nicely orange tastes with cinnamon - or maybe they did?
The real cinnamon
After da Gama's explorations, Spaniard Ferdinand Magellan was searching for spices on behalf of Spain, and in the Philippines he found Cinnamomum mindanaense, which was closely related to Cinnamomun zeylanicum, the cinnamon better known these days as cinnamon verum, the real cinnamon. In the 17th century, the Dutch established a trading post in Ceylon, which is now known as Sri Lanka. The Dutch then realised that Cinnamon verum grew in the wild on this green and lush island. The Dutch commercialised the cultivation of cinnamon. However, by the late 18th century, the British took over Ceylon but by 1800, cinnamon was no longer an expensive, rare commodity, as it had begun to be cultivated in other parts of the world.
Today, we typically encounter two types of commercial cinnamon: Ceylon and cassia cinnamon. The more expensive Ceylon cinnamon, which we use in our Superior teas, is still produced in Sri Lanka. It has a milder, sweeter flavor popular for both baking and flavoring hot drinks.
The Indians and ancient Chinese used the root of ginger as a tonic to treat common ailments.Ginger first appeared in the southern parts of the ancient China. From there, it spread to India, Maluku Islands (so-called Spice Islands), rest of the Asia and West Africa. Europe saw ginger for the first time in the 1st century when the ancient Romans traded with the India. Very popular in kitchens all over the world.
These three spices combine beautifully with our organically grown Spiced Orange Rooibos which you can buy on our website. Unfortunately we only deliver in South Africa.