Move over, Matcha! There’s another tea coming to town.

The Olive Tree has a rich history, not just as far back as the Bible, but even much further. Once known as the “king of trees” and also said to be the “tree of life” in the Garden of Eden; in North America, we know it more for its branches as a symbol of peace and friendship.

Examine closely the Great Seal of the United States of America; the eagle holds the olive branch clutched in its claw. Count the leaves and count the olives on the branch. I know you’ll find it quite interesting.

All the “anointing with oil” in most religious ceremonies, dressing wounds with oil, using oil for beauty; that was all done with olive oil.  

From the ancient Hebrews, Greeks, and Romans the olive tree has been sacred for millennia. Oh yes, here in North America we’ve been told for the last couple of decades to use olive oil, and we’re slowly catching on.

In Southern California, we grow many olive trees. It is an evergreen and withstands the dry heat, but is predominantly used just for landscaping purposes. It is quite common to see the ground around our olive trees covered with black olives. If you step on them or drive over them, they do indeed leave a residue of oil for several months.

We trim and manicure our olive trees to be quite lovely but we are definitely not utilizing the tree to reap any of its benefits.

Besides the olives and its leaves that remain green all year long, there is magic in the leaves when carefully and skillfully processed.

In Rajasthan, India, on 5,000 acres of land, 10,000 farmers take tender care of 1.7 million olive trees. At THE OLITIA COMPANY every step of their process, from sowing to packaging, they have chosen the best techniques to ensure only the freshest leaves reach you. Before transferring to the field, the olive saplings are first grown in cocopeat to protect them from bacterial growth. The cutting and slow drying retain the essence and liquor of the olive leaves. Their three-layered packaging ensures garden freshness of leaves.

Have a look at it.

The following are the benefits of Olive Tea, most of which tea folks will recognize. From the Olitia website: It is antioxidant rich: cleanses your skin with its detoxifying effects. Has anti-aging properties: makes wrinkles fade away giving skin a youthful glow. Zero caffeine: energizes you without caffeine. Fights fungi and bacteria: kills pathogens to prevent herpes and other infections. Reduces cholesterol: depletes bad cholesterol (LDL) for improved blood flow. Healthy heart: reverses cardiovascular stress for a healthy heart. Anti-inflammatory: reduces ache and stiffness of joints. Boosts immunity: strengthens your defense against cold and flu. Reduce risk of cancers: prevents growth of cancerous cells.

Yes, it’s called Olive “TEA” — but does not contain any of the Camellia sinensus.

But what does it taste like? Glad you asked.

It is mellow, pleasant, herbal, well-rounded in the mouth, and enjoyable. If you’ve ever taken a teaspoon of olive oil straight, it tends to have a bitter aftertaste felt in the throat. In over-steeping the Olive Tea, you will be reminded of that tasting experience. You will see a slight residue on the top of your infusion: It is not oily looking or feeling, but you will be getting some olive oil in your cup from the leaves. Every dieter knows you still need good oil for the body when restricting your intake.

Olitia makes four varieties; the Mint has a tendency to overtake the olive leaf, but mint lovers will be extremely happy with it. The Holy Basil mix and the Classic, which is just the olives leaves, are my favorites. I enjoyed the Lemongrass but steeped it a bit too much in an attempt to get everything from the Lemongrass, and that is when I felt that familiar bitterness at the back of my throat. A lighter steeping was much more pleasing. 

Olive Tea has definitely arrived in North America.  OLITIA VIDEO

Images provided by author.