The shifting of our reality is constant now and taxing on our beings.
Humans meet rosemary, rosemary meet humans. Rosemary is an unassuming, sturdy, steady herb that offers quite a story and quite the healing support. For most, rosemary is merely an herb for cooking, used sparingly because of her bold personality. This personality of hers is exactly why she should be used frequently, in many forms, for many reasons.
Rosmarinus Officinalis is her formal name, which translates loosely into “dew of the sea.” She is aptly named as her history traces her back to the seaside regions of North African and Mediterranean coasts. The cultural history of rosemary traces back thousands of years, the ancient Greeks and Romans holding a special place in their stories for this feisty herb. Rosemary was thought to grow in places to ward off evil energy, as well as was an herb associated with remembrance and love. Death and marriage rituals included rosemary across various cultures. Sprigs of rosemary were donned at funeral gatherings, offering respect and remembrance of the recently deceased. In matrimony, rosemary has quite a few traditions.
From the bride and groom dipping rosemary into their toasting wine to honor their love and vows, to the bride giving her groom a sprig on their wedding night in order to secure his fidelity during their marriage, rosemary has been sticking her needled nose into affairs of the heart for millennia. Another purported benefit of this saucy herb is one of youthing. Writers, poets, healers, and royalty alike have claimed youth-like visages based on the use of rosemary, especially washing one’s face in rosemary water. The stories are many, cultural history has certainly taken a liking to rosemary over the years as a main character in dramatic tales of love and mystery.
Medicinally speaking, this modest mother lode of an herb has an extensive portfolio of beneficial properties. Not only in folklore and ancient herbal documentation is this herb praised, but even in recent times through scientific research has there been fuss made regarding the importance of this plant. There have been studies conducted on the benefit to the liver, as well as cognitive brain function. There has been work done with Alzheimer’s patients and rosemary, along with others struggling with cognitive and memory function, tapping into the carnosic acid contained in rosemary that assists in fighting off free radicals within the brain and protecting further damage. Sluggish livers and digestion benefit. Circulation, hair growth, and eyesight benefit from the use of rosemary. The anti-oxidative and anti-inflammatory benefits are plentiful. Really, what doesn’t rosemary do?
Rosemary is widely and easily accessible, offering a plethora of opportunities to engage with her healing prowess. Used in cooking is where most people connect with rosemary. Moving deeper, rosemary water (hydrosol), teas, infusions, tinctures, bitters, oils, oxymels are a few more methods of moving the healing from plant to you. Our medicinal mixology inspired rosemary cocktail will include both an oxymel and a hydrosol, allowing two ways to connect with this royalty of herbs.
“Keep Thee Youngly…”
- 2 oz. gin
- 3 bar spoons sage-apple puree
- 3/4 oz. Respiratory Oxymel*
- 3/4 oz. lemon juice
- 1 oz. simple syrup
Preparation: Shake and double strain into a tumbler filled with crushed ice.
Add 3 sprays of rosemary cocktail spritz (an edible steam distilled hydrosol)
Garnish with a nasturtium flower for a boost on Vitamin C. *Rosemary, lemon thyme, licorice basil, oregano steeped in red wine vinegar and local honey to taste. I used an equal parts ratio for this particular blend.