STUDENT OF THE LEAF By Melissa Walsh Photos Yanni
here’s nothing better than a nice cup of tea and peninsula tea aficionado, Tania Stacey, should know, after being crowned the Australian World Tea Brewers Cup Champion.
aware of this in Australia. We don’t know enough about the green tea and so I started the investigation and started to study it.”
The event took place at Fine Food Australia in September, and qualifies Tania to go into the next stage in May, 2018. A former corporate high flyer and seven-coffee-a-day drinker, Tania has found her new career in tea and could not be more passionate about it.
“That’s why I don’t call myself an expert. I go there and am in awe of the tea farmers; how they grow the tea and process it is incredible. Tea farmers over there in China, Taiwan and Japan are like wine makers; they grow the tea and make the tea, smell the leaf and know when it is ready. It is truly a lifelong learning process and tradition,” said Tania who is now a total tea convert. “If you talk to people about tea most people know of it, and it usually evokes memories. It is a more gentle start and tea will sustain you all day long. It is a slow release of caffeine, unlike coffee. The more you learn, the more you realise that you don’t know.”
“I call myself a student of the leaf,” said Tania from her Mornington home. “Tea was always a part of my life. My dad taught me how to make s good cup of tea. Then about six years ago on a trip to China I bought a tea pot and the gentleman said ‘come and have a tea with me’ which is common when you purchase something. He gave me green tea and it was so sweet and delicate; I thought we are now
16 | PENINSULA
After taking a study tour to Taiwan, Tania realised that learning about tea was going to be a lifelong process.
continued next page... November 2017