Shiraz Tea? Twinings Brews a Pot for Adelaide

Stephen Twining and a Master Tea Blender chat with The Adelaide Review about their new Adelaide-inspired tea.

It’s been three centuries since the launch of The Golden Lyon in London, one of the first tea houses in history for women to buy and enjoy tea. To mark this occasion, Twinings has invited five Australian female celebrities to create artworks for their new tea pack launching next year. Designs will embody the contemporary attitudes and aesthetics of the women participating. 10th generation Twining’s family member Stephen Twining and Master Tea Blender Philippa Thacker are in Australia to discover the essence of our local culture by talking to as many women as possible.

Twinings-Shiraz-Tea-Adelaide-review-2Stephen and Philippa enjoy a cuppa at the Mayfair Hotel’s Henessey Bar 

Having created a tea for each state’s palate, the pair will then make an all-encompassing blend to reflect the Australian woman. “Our main opportunity here is to engage with some Australian women to find out a bit about their tea tastes and what they really want out of a cup of tea,” Thacker says. “My challenge before I left the UK was to devise a blend that would represent each of the Australian states.” Drawing inspiration from South Australia’s wines, Thacker created a blend similar to a Shiraz. “I thought, let’s be bold and go for a nice Shiraz flavoured tea. There are a lot of similarities between tea and wine so it wasn’t that hard to come up with something.” The flavour profile involved “looking at a lot of herbal infusions” of black tea, blackcurrant pieces, blackcurrant drops and strawberry pieces as “refreshment seems to be a key theme” of Adelaide’s personality. Twinings-Shiraz-Tea-Adelaide-review-2 When selecting teas for a blend, Thacker says it’s important to know the individual characters each tea brings and how they interact. For a “homogenous blend”, ingredients must be blended for 20 minutes and preferably left overnight. Adelaide’s blend has elements of acidity, while other notes were more intense and equivalent to a dry white wine. Hints of citric and grapy tones balanced out these competing flavours for a refreshing body. The Twinings team will continue their tour around the country this June and updates on the new blend of Twinings tea will be revealed later in the year.

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