The first, and so far the only, national Tea Masters Cup championship of the 2020-2021 cycle has been successfully held in Russia. The winners in the Tea Preparation and Tea Tasting categories were determined on March 12-13 in Moscow (within the framework of the largest industrial event in Russia – Coffee Tea Cacao Russian Expo).
The difficult time of the pandemic, in which the championship was held, attracted special attention to the event. Due to the tense epidemiological situation in different regions of the country, the traditional regional qualifying rounds were canceled, but at the same time, the possible number of participants in the final was increased. The championship, held in an open and friendly atmosphere, was attended by 61 tea masters from all over Russia.
In the Tea Preparation category, 16 participants presented 2 drinks to the judges: Master’s Tea (any pure tea brewed in any way) and Ogranizers Tea (pure Ceylon tea that had to be prepared using the equipment provided by the organizer and served in To Go format). Olga-Alicia Daineko (who already represented Russia at the world final in 2017) became the winner of the tournament, Alisa Sytina (Cantata) took the second place, and Elena Pazhetnykh (Japanesetea.ru) took the third place.
Due to the current covid restrictions and based on permission of the TMC Head Quarter, this year the competitions in the Tea Tasting category were held under the new rules.
The new format of the championship turned out to be very entertaining and dynamic: each participant was given 6 individual sets of 3 black cups, where one cup with infusion was always different from the two others. Within three minutes, the master had to identify the different cups in all sets.
Among 45 participants, only one tea master – the reigning world champion Nikolai Dolgiy (Orimi Group), managed to determine 6 out of 6 cups. The second place was taken by Ksenia Lozovskaya (Chaism.pro), the third place was taken by Ilya Goncharov (May).
The general sponsors of the Tea Masters Cup Russia were the leader of the Russian tea market and the 4th largest tea company in the world – Orimi Group, as well as the Sri Lanka Tea Board, which provide the best tea Ceylon tea samples for championship. The competition was held by technical support of the Franco company – distributor of Marco. The water was provided by BWT. The championships were also supported by the following companies: Huhtamaki, Gourmet Style, Acaia, Roasting Brew, Slon, Opticom, RUDN University, Checkedout, RUSTEACOFFEE