From my reading of Roy Moxham's Tea: Addiction, Exploitation, and Empire:
"The first known mention of tea as a drink in Europe is found in a Venetian book of 1559, Navigatione et Viaggi. The author, Giambattista Ramusio, related what he had been told by a Persian of 'chai catai':
They take of that herb, whether dry or fresh, and boil it well in water. One or two cups of this decoction
taken on an empty stomach removes fever, headache, stomach-ache, pain in the side or in the joints, and it
should be taken as hot as you can bear it."
I always knew that tea was a panacea.