Rooibos Teabags

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Rooibos Teabags

Postby Sam. » Apr 18th, '08, 20:29

I was at a friends drinking some of their rooibos out of a teabag and began to wonder, is there really a difference loose-leaf rooibos versus bagged rooibos. Obviously with loose-leaf tea versus tea in teabags the quality and size of the leaf is extremely different and the leafs need to be free to have room to expand, but it appears to me that rooibos "leaves" are basically like little twigs. They don't expand much, if at all, do they? If not, wouldn't rooibos out of a teabag potentially be just as good as loose-leaf rooibos. It'd be easier to brew for sure - all the tiny leaf pieces are a pain to get out of the ingenuiTEA or any other brewing vessel.

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Postby witches brew » Apr 18th, '08, 21:05

Rooibos doesn't expand much when it steeps, but I wonder if the quality that is available loose is better than what they put in the teabags? Freshness and all that. I don't think I've ever tried a rooibos teabag, so I can't say.

Do a comparison test for us and let us know.

I use the fill-your-own teabags for my rooibos because it makes such a mess with a strainer.

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Postby PolyhymnianMuse » Apr 18th, '08, 21:20

I dont think it would be much difference. The only thing I can think of is maybe if your putting it directly into a pot your obviously going to give the rooibos more room to spread out in the water rather than packing it all together in a teabag. I'm sure it wouldnt make much of a difference either way due to rooibos having prettty much no astringency or bitterness even if you forget about it.

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Postby Mary R » Apr 19th, '08, 12:45

I've tried rooibos in what seems 1001 different ways and I have yet to discern a difference between bagged rooibos and loose leaf. Some supermarket brands may use some patently artificial flavorings in theirs. Others may use a paper that leaves a taste. If, however, you find a good brand with decent flavorings and paper...there's practically no difference between it and loose.

Rooibos is a pain in the neck to clean out of infusers...but I find that if I use an old toothbrush to scrub them, it doesn't take too horribly long.

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Postby Cinnamon Kitty » Apr 19th, '08, 12:52

I use a nylon mesh brewing basket from Republic of Tea for my Rooiboses and it doesn't clog up too badly. A quick rinse in the sink cleans it out pretty well. I'll also use Adagio's paper filter bags, but sometimes they give a papery taste to the tisane, especially with Vanilla Rooibos.

The bagged Rooibos that I have tried, namely the Tazo brand one, tasted awful to me. I definitely prefer the loose, flavored Rooiboses over that bagged one.

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Postby Sam. » Apr 19th, '08, 17:57

Maybe I'll do a comparison test with some of Adagio's rooibos and some nice quality bagged rooibos. I suppose just throwing loose rooibos into one of Adagio's fill-your-own teabags is pretty simple also.

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Postby Mary R » Apr 19th, '08, 20:49

Cinnamon Kitty wrote:The bagged Rooibos that I have tried, namely the Tazo brand one, tasted awful to me. I definitely prefer the loose, flavored Rooiboses over that bagged one.


Yeah, Tazo's is pretty foul. I don't understand it, really. It's so hard to botch a rooibos blend...but I guess you can do anything if you try hard enough. :)

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Postby LavenderPekoe » Apr 20th, '08, 13:03

I think Tazo's factory puts the same underlying flavor (anise?) in all of their teas. I hates it.

I think Harney has some nice bags with rooibos.

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Postby Mary R » Apr 20th, '08, 15:14

I'll second that. I had a Harney's Rooibos Chai bag last night and was very impressed. Rooibos or not, it was one of the better balanced chais I've had.

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I think I might try some.

Postby silvermage2000 » Jun 14th, '08, 21:01

I think I might try some rooibos from republic of tea.

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