The second annual Tea Masters Cup Australia/New Zealand took place in Melbourne on the 31st March 2017, with steep competition resulting in a tie for the winner of the Tea Pairing Category.
Eight entrants competed on the day, showcasing their talent in tea brewing, tea and food pairing and tea tasting. An expert judging panel, made up of tea and food experts, tried over 20 different teas throughout the day including rare black and green teas, and fragrant floral oolongs.
“This was a highly competitive event,” says Sharyn Johnston, founder of Australian Tea Masters, and global advisory member of Tea Masters Cup. “The entrants really showcased the level of high quality tea knowledge and service we are wanting to achieve all over Australia. It is inspiring to see that level of passion and enthusiasm for tea from people who are prepared to experiment with new ways of brewing, presentation and service.”
Competition was fierce in the Tea Pairing category, with judges unable to decide the winner between an inspiring Indian themed tea performance featuring a pairing of a raw chocolate dessert with a specialty Indian black tea, and an authentic Japanese themed pairing with a delicious savoury dish of fish paired with a roasted Japanese tea. A draw was called and the final winner was decided by lottery. We believe this was the first ever tie called at any Tea Masters Cup event worldwide.
The champions of Tea Masters Cup Australia/New Zealand 2017 are:
- Tea Preparation Category – Cheryl Teo
- Tea Pairing Category – Dorothy Chan
- Tea Tasting Category – Ruan De Witt
The champions will compete in the Tea Masters Cup International World Championships later in the year. The tied winner of the Tea Pairing category, Mary Jane Hua, will also compete in the world championship.
The event was sponsored by award winning tea company, Lumbini, and was held at the Australian International Tea Expo.