Our naturally grown hibiscus flowers are handpicked from around the Cycladic island of Paros during August each year. Compared to standard hibiscus, our flowers are smoother and more balanced (with a little less astringency), due to the varietal and purer growing conditions.
Hibiscus comes from the Malvaceae family, which features the marsh mallow (where the roots were initially used); the common mallow; hollyhock; Jews Mallow or Molokhie in the Arab world; and okra. The leaves and seeds of a lot of the plants from the Malvaceae family have a slimy texture. Okra and Jew's Mallow have this viscous texture which helps with the etymology. Viscus and hibiscus come from the same Greek word, “iviscos” which means hibiscus and has come to mean thick or sticky as in a viscous fluid.
Within the hibiscus family, there are hundreds of varietals, however the sepals of one type in particular, Hibiscus sabdariffa (or roselle), are made into an herbal infusion. This type of hibiscus is know as Karkare in the Middle East and Africa, and sorrel in the Caribbean.
Hibiscus contains up to 20% citric acid, with small amounts of ascorbic acid (Vitamin C). In addition, it has high quantities of anthocyanins (antioxidants) providing its red colour, and quercetin (an anti-inflammatory, antioxidant and pain killer).