Izenwort Memory & Peace

The Romans drank the tea before peace negotiations, in order to improve their mood. For injuries following battle, they used infusions of sideritis to wash out the wounds. It is known today that the active substances of this plant help against dementia and therefore help our memory.  

The name IZENWORT [ajˈzɛn’wɜrt] is our invention – from the Old English IZEN (meaning: iron) and WORT (root) …..better known as “IRONWORT” – but that sounded more like the German word “Eisen” (engl. Iron).

The Albanian legendary hero Gjergj Kastriot Skanderbeg (Alb: Gjergj Kastriot Skënderbeu) is depicted in the logo. His story is thrilling and quite moving. A good Albanian friend told us that Albania has never attacked another country in 3000 years, but has always been attacked, despite courageous and bitter resistance.

Anyway, the Albanian “verbena” or mountain tea, known as “Çaj mali” in Albanian (Sideritis raeseri), has grown so close to our hearts (and taste buds)  that we dedicate this webshop to it.

Taste & Smell

IZENWORT is a tasty, easily digestible herbal tea – or better: an infusion. Izenwort can be infused twice. The smell and appearance of this plant is reminiscent of sage. It has a lot to offer in terms of taste: A light sweetness with strong notes, and sometimes a slight lemon smell. A tea connoisseur will recognise the scent of fennel and sage.

History

Throughout the Balkans, mountain tea (Alb: Çaj mali) is known as a remedy that has been used since ancient times to cure many ailments. In his book “De Materia Medica, the Roman-Greek military physician Dioscurides reported for the first time in the first century A.D. on the healing and health-promoting properties of tea and infusions with the genus sideritis, which is widespread in the mountains of the southeastern Mediterranean region.

Nature

In Albania, the plant from the labiate family can still be found growing mainly in the wild in this vast, almost untouched mountainous world.  In the West, Çaj mali is also known as “Greek Verbena” . It has been drunk since ancient times by farmers and people living in the mountains of the Mediterranean region and is traditionally used as a remedy for wounds, colds or anxiety.

Science

Many scientific studies in recent years attribute the species Sideritis raeseri, Sideritis euböa and Sideritis scardica to have very positive effects against depression and ADHD. A potential positive effect for delaying dementia has already been demonstrated in scientific studies with mice. The plant has already been patented in Europe since 2012 for the development of herbal pharmaceuticals to treat these diseases.

Region

In some countries of the region, the plant is already being cultivated. In Albania, it is traditionally collected mainly in the mountains by families in the months of June and July. Then, it is air-dried in dark, dry rooms and mainly sold on markets. We have read a lot about the healing properties of sideritis: they occur in the highest concentration in plants exposed to wind and weather in the mountains. Therefore, we rely on the original tradition of families collecting and harvesting the plant in the untouched mountains  – even if there is not always a guaranteed supply.

Sustainability

IZENWORT should remain a purely natural product, not least to guarantee the quality and quantity of the healing ingredients from the untouched nature of the harvest regions. Competing vendors from other areas sometimes claim that wild collectors of Albania do not pay attention to the conservation of the plant when collecting. Even though the country has had to endure bad times and great poverty, collectors are very aware that the harvesting method must ensure a harvest in the coming year – after all, they live off of it. IZENWORT is purchased from professional collectors who consciously harvest in their home region.

Preparation & Recipes

 

The Preventive Infusion

Break 3-4 stems with leaves and flowerse in the morning and add 2 litres of water at 80-90°C. The tea can be served hot as well as warm or iced. The curative effects mentioned in many studies start at one litre per day.

For A Good Mood

At the end of the day, break a stem with leaves and floweres and pour 500 ml of water at 80-90°C. We like it pure. Some people add a spoonful of honey and lemon, especially in water.

Packaging & Shipping

We pack in food-friendly kraft paper bags and in single-wall, lightweight shipping cartons so that plastic does not have to be used here either. Most Sideritis teas are are offered shrink-wrapped in plastic – we don’t want to do that from the beginning, because it’s just nonsense for the tea and for the environment. IZENWORT lasts – stored in dry and dark rooms – at least 3 years without losing any of its benefits. Our address stickers are made with environmentally friendly adhesives. We also don’t want to produce 50g or 100g packages to avoid lots of shipping, but only deliver you per 250g – that should be enough for your family, your student commune, your office or grandma and grandpa for about 8 weeks. 

Teawater without chlorine & pollutants

You can find your drinking water insurance here.  If you absolutely want the best taste for your infusion, it is a good idea to also deal with the water: We have been using a mobile stainless steel waterfilter with ceramic candles for years. It not only filters the malodorous chlorine from the water, but also – very practically – pesticides such as glyphosate, all organic and inorganic elements, bacteria and heavy metals to 99.9% without removing the healthy minerals.  Reliable, environmentally friendly and affordable – carefully made in England for 175 years.