Monday, April 18, 2011

Dutch Dilmah Tea Sommelier Champion 2011

Chris Oosterveen.  Since my introduction to Dilmah, the Dutch Dilmah Family Team introduction was not far after. Kasia Vermaire 2010 First Woman Dutch Tea Sommelier Champion began as a skype interview that changed direction to a co author to GTC in a half a second. Chef Frank Van der Zande, a name I had recognized from the Chef and the Teamaker, I had asked Kasia to host a video interview with Chef Frank for the US audience and Chef Frank  quoted 'Are you ready for the Dutch Invasion in the States" I would love to see a fruition of this invasion, William Gerretsen (a modest photographer and will find his photos on my website soon), Florence van der Poel and Janneke Heitlager of Madal Bal/Dilmah Benelux group connection followed soon after and Robert Schinkel, Dutch Dilmah Tea Sommelier Champion 2009. Robert moves so fast around the globe with Dilhan C. Fernando it was easier to just meet him in Sri Lanka in 2012 at the Dilmah School of Tea. Looking forward to Robert sharing his Dilmah Tea adventures that would excite US Dilmah tea sommeliers,  They all became my Dilmah Kin. You have heard the term "Sister Cities" well they are my "Sister Dilmah Team". My partiality of course would have to cover the Venuez 2011 Dilmah Tea Sommelier Championship.  Florence and Janneke helped to fulfill this coverage.  
 Chris Oosterveen recently established a tea room in The Hague that he says is a true "Dilmah experience". Chris stunned the judges with  a Darjeeling, mint, lime sorbet and apple juice. "Served at the right temperature, great for a summer evening at the barbecue" said the jury report. For combination of dishes, the young bartender served a black Uda Watte tea ( a"cru" that sometimes is called the Pinot Noir of  tea ) with a cranberry paté.  A traditional presentation of Dilmah Tea Sencha Green Tea was "very pleasant" experience.
Oosterveen will later this year will travel to the International School of Tea in Sri Lanka to be trained. "This training at this institute opens doors to national and international coffee world," said a spokesman.
The Tea Sommelier competition is an initiative by Merrill J. Fernando, founder of Dilmah Tea. The zenith of innovation of preparation and presentation of tea and to apprehend all that it entails about the quality and the increase of a healthy drink. The first International School of Tea " established by the Insitut Paul Bocuse in Lyon works in this framework. The doors are open to national and international coffee world.
Dilmah Tea is the pioneer of Single Origin tea from Sri Lanka (formerly Ceylon). Sustainability can be successfully executed by 10% of global profits stays in Sri Lanka to improve the conditions to the plantation workers and their families. Through the Merrill J. Fernando Charitable Foundation that serves over 100 projects a year from the underprivileged, entrepreneurship programs, woman empowerment, blind and hearing impaired schools, and the Dilmah Conservation. Helping 10,000 Sri Lankans a year and various other programs around the globe.
I decided I would show photos of the event to appreciate all the innovations of a tea sommelier and would stir future US sommeliers.
 Jury consisted of Tea Sommelier Oebele Kempenaar, Jolands Stoffels of the Dutch trade association for and tea (KNVKT), culinary journalist Jacques Hermus and Bearing Janneke Heit, Importer of Dilmah Madal Bal.

Hosted by Robert Schinkel Dilmah Tea Sommelier Champion 2009 and Chef Frank van der Zande of Umoja Food

 Congratulations Chris! Dutch Dilmah Tea Sommelier Champion 2011