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He was specifically looking for spices to put in wine, and was not alone among European monarchs at the time to have such a desire for spice.Spices were all imported from plantations in Asia and Africa, which made them expensive.Spain and Portugal were not happy to pay the high price that Venice demanded for spices.The control of trade routes and the spice-producing regions were the main reasons that Portuguese navigator Vasco da Gama sailed to India in 1499.From the 8th until the 15th century, the Republic of Venice had the monopoly on spice trade with the Middle East, and along with it the neighboring Italian maritime republics and city-states. It has been estimated that around 1,000 tons of pepper and 1,000 tons of the other common spices were imported into Western Europe each year during the Late Middle Ages.The value of these goods was the equivalent of a yearly supply of grain for 1.5 million people.
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Since becoming the viceroy of the Indies, he took Goa in India in 1510, and Malacca on the Malay peninsula in 1511.
The Portuguese could now trade directly with Siam, China, and the Maluku Islands.
the most common being black pepper, cinnamon (and the cheaper alternative cassia), cumin, nutmeg, ginger and cloves.
Given medieval medicine's main theory of humorism, spices and herbs were indispensable to balance "humors" in food, a daily basis for good health at a time of recurrent pandemics.