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Redbush, Rooibos or African Red Tea Explained

Rooibos (pronounced Roy Boss by the way), also called the Red Tea or Redbush is a delicious “go-to” for a naturally caffeine free alternative to coffee or your “normal” tea, and is an incredibly versatile infusion.

What does Redbush or Rooibos taste like?

Rooibos has a nutty, full bodied flavour that is both refreshing and a great herbal substitute for everyday tea and coffee.

Rooibos has no need to be blended with other ingredients. It stands alone and still achieves a full colour, taste and aroma. Rooibos is the only infusion that goes well with milk – just like with your “normal” tea .

Being naturally caffeine free (which means there is no need to strip any caffeine away as with black teas – the plant leaves that are used are 100% naturally caffeine free!) and less than 4 calories a cup, it’s also great for the kids’ teatime – lovely with a little milk and honey.

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Where does Redbush or Rooibos come from?

Rooibos is a broom-like plant and is grown exclusively in the Western Cape province of South Africa, a small yet mountainous region known as the Cederberg.

The climate is a demanding one by any standards where temperatures range from below zero in the winter to above 40°C in the summer.

This little shrub like plant survives by growing its taproot up to 3m down into the soil. As it grows it produces needle-like leaves and yellow flowers.

The cultivation of Rooibos tea, which had been used by native Africans for centuries, really took off from 1902 and then throughout the twentieth century.

Today it is consumed in over 37 countries world wide and is hugely important for the local South African economy and culture.

How is Redbush or Rooibos produced?

As with other teas, Rooibos leaves undergo an oxidizing process which produces its distinctive reddish-brown colour (which is why it has so many “Red” nick names) and enhances its nutty, smoky flavour.

The leaves are green when picked, and after they are chopped and bruised, the leaves are left out to dry naturally in the sun – during which time they turn red.

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How do you brew Redbush or Rooibos?

Rooibos is a really versatile tea. It can be brewed in the normal way but can also be served over ice, and even as a milky Chai tea (have you tried Redbush Caramel Chai Latte?)!

  • For a normal hot cuppa, use 1 teaspoon of rooibos leaves for every 200 ml of water.
  • Pour boiling water over the leaves and leave to steep for up to 3 minutes to unleash its fulsome flavour.
  • Add milk and honey to taste.
  • Simply refrigerate to create an iced-tea variety and for the Redbush Caramel Chai Latte you can brew the leaves in boiling milk.

THE TWININGS Redbush / Rooibos RANGE

Redbush Tea is made with the freshest leaves of the Redbush or Rooibos plant that thrives in the beating South African sun. It’s a refreshing brew, with a glorious copper-red earthy colour and flavour and it's naturally caffeine free, so you can enjoy it any time of the day or night.

Redbush - 80 Tea Bags

The Redbush leaves from the sun drenched Western Cape of South Africa to create a vibrant, copper-red cup.

"Love the product and coming from South Africa - this is the best Rooibos I have found."


Golden Caramel Rooibos

The sun-dried needles’ naturally rich depth of flavour has been enhanced with a hint of caramel flavour.

Presented in a beautifully designed box containing a lovely little golden bag filled with loose leaf pyramid tea bags.



Take your cup somewhere new. The world of loose leaf teas is your oyster with Twinings!

Rooibos, Orange & Cinnamon

The leaves of the Rooibos plant are combined with sweet orange flavouring and the unmistakable warmth and exotic aroma of cinnamon, to give a delightful and unusual copper-red coloured infusion.


Redbush Caramel Velvet

The unique, nutty flavour of Redbush tea is delicious all on its own. But we have discovered that the rich and creamy hint of caramel flavour augments it perfectly for luxurious cuppa at any time of the day. 


Rooibos & Peppermint

The warming taste of Rooibos, delicately combined with the cooling, refreshing hint of peppermint, transports you to a moment of calm and serenity as you drift along the banks of the Nile gazing into starlit desert nights.


Shop ALL Redbush/Roobios Tea

Roobios landscape and process images © Rooibos Ltd.

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