Rooibos Tea or Rooibos


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Rooibos Tea or Rooibos

Postby Àjen » Jun 16th, '07, 16:11

Which is it? Does one say rooibos tea or just plain rooibos. While exhibiting my products at the World Tea Expo, I met an individual who felt it necessary to tell me over and over that it is not "rooibos tea"- but just plain "rooibos".

Now, I understand that there are some tea lovers will only call camellia sinensis varieties "teas"... but is it wrong for me to call herbal infusions like rooibos "teas"?
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Postby Mary R » Jun 16th, '07, 16:50

Technically, yes it is wrong. Does anyone but the most anal retentive care? No. If you want to say 'rooibos teas,' then carry on.
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gracias

Postby Àjen » Jun 16th, '07, 18:07

will do.. (in fact, i reverted back to saying 'rooibos tea' after she left my booth)

anyhoo, you just save me a couple hundred dollars in therapy.
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Postby scruffmcgruff » Jun 16th, '07, 19:33

As long as you make it clear that rooibos isn't a true tea, there's not much of a problem. I'm a bit anal retentive about these things because when I see ambiguity I see something being hidden (anal retentive *and* paranoid), but most people probably don't care.
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Postby Space Samurai » Jun 16th, '07, 23:58

I wish there were more of a distinction between true tea and herbal stuff. Not to sound anal, but they are two entirely different things. But no, the word tea now encompasses the wide variety of things you can steep in water, so there isn't anything wrong with Rooibos tea.
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Postby Mary R » Jun 17th, '07, 11:25

You know, I'd never looked up the definition for 'tea' before. So I ran it through the Mac dictionary app (because I'm too lazy to walk the five feet to my Webster's Collegiate and turn pages). I learned two things: 1) I miss my internet access to the OED and 2) maybe my brother's on to something when he says my Yunnans smell like pot.

tea |tē|
noun
1 a hot drink made by infusing the dried, crushed leaves of the tea plant in boiling water.
• the dried leaves used to make such a drink.
(also iced tea) such a drink served cold with ice cubes.
[usu. with adj. ] a hot drink made from the infused leaves, fruits, or flowers of other plants : herbal tea | fruit teas.
2 (also tea plant) the evergreen shrub or small tree that produces these leaves, native to South and eastern Asia and grown as a major cash crop.
Camellia sinensis, family Theaceae.
3 chiefly Brit. a light afternoon meal consisting typically of tea to drink, sandwiches, and cakes.
Brit. a cooked evening meal. See also high tea.
4 informal another term for marijuana.
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Postby Mocha Wheels » Aug 26th, '07, 15:53

Mary R wrote:Technically, yes it is wrong. Does anyone but the most anal retentive care? No. If you want to say 'rooibos teas,' then carry on.


why is it refered to as "red tea" then... that's just begging for a tea novice to be picked on lol
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Re: Rooibos Tea or Rooibos

Postby Chip » Aug 26th, '07, 16:10

Àjen wrote:Which is it? Does one say rooibos tea or just plain rooibos. While exhibiting my products at the World Tea Expo, I met an individual who felt it necessary to tell me over and over that it is not "rooibos tea"- but just plain "rooibos".

Now, I understand that there are some tea lovers will only call camellia sinensis varieties "teas"... but is it wrong for me to call herbal infusions like rooibos "teas"?


Welcome to the forum, Ajen...I hardly ever check out the rooibus forums, but since I did, I will add my 2 yen worth.

Perhaps for the average person to say rooibus tea, it is not a big deal, but if I was marketing rooibus at the world tea expo, I would call it by its proper name in order to prevent confusion over my products. Someone purchasing it could think you are selling rooibus blended with tea.

If I was a buyer at the expo, I would also be more inclined to buy from a vendor who is using proper names for their products, after all, there is enough confusion over names when it comes to plain tea, why add to the confusion.

But that is just me...I am one of the anal retentive ones.
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Postby scruffmcgruff » Aug 26th, '07, 16:16

Mocha: It's just a misnomer. It's the same way tisanes are often called "herbal teas," where the word tea is just inserted to denote that the herbs are infused in water like tea. It's similar to how some people use the word "coke" to describe any carbonated beverage.

Actually, the chinese call fully-oxidized teas (what we would call black teas) red teas, so calling rooibos "red tea" is even more confusing than saying rooibos tea. :)
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