The Australian Tea Masters has launched a tea sommelier app designed as the ultimate quick-resource tool for enthusiasts and tea professionals.
The $5.49 app is the work of Sharyn Johnston, founder of the Australian Tea Masters, a well-respected tea sommelier, and author of the 289-page Tea Sommelier Book, a training manual that offers Australian, Singaporean, and international students a tea certification course.
“After an entire year of development we are proud to be able to present this application for both iOS and Android,” said Johnson. The app will be continually expanded, “but it is a one-time purchase. That means once you’ve purchased it, you will gain free updates for life. We’re so excited that after so much development, we’re finally able to offer this app both to our students, and to tea fans worldwide,” she said.
The app opens with a consumer-friendly flavor wheel that is designed to be less intimidating than that used by scientists. The Earthy segment, for example, includes animal, mineral, marine, and wood terms that are ideal for describing puer. The Vegetal segment describes grass, herbs, and vegetable flavors useful in identifying the prominent notes in green teas. Fire denotes the flavors associated with ash, toast, smoke, tobacco, and burnt. There are more than 100 notes listed.
Early apps for tea lovers included steeping timers, charts, and a place to take notes. Touch the menu on this app to open a whole world of tea including Tea Music, which provides a playlist designed for a beautiful tea-drinking environment and for establishing ambiance for a tearoom.
“Currently the app only allows enthusiasts to view courses provided by Australian Tea Masters, but soon we are planning to integrate full Tea 101 functionality, allowing app users to take the Tea 101 course from the comfort of their mobile devices. As we expand into further online courses (Tea 102: History of Tea Online is in the works!), these too will be made available,” she said.
A technical reference work based on the training manual, it includes a wealth of information and tools for users, including pages devoted to:
Top Teas, which provides information and flavor notes for a huge number of the world’s most well-known teas throughout the six main types. Also provided is brewing information specific to each tea you’re viewing.
Tea Types, a primer on the six main types of tea: white, green, yellow, oolong, black, and puer.
Alternate Brews, offering popular tea alternatives, including rooibos, Tulsi, and honeybush.
Tea Terms, which is an ultimate A–Z glossary of every tea term you might come across.
Tea Houses, which provides a public listing of tea houses found all over Australia (which will soon be expanded to include tea houses from all over the world).
Tea Notes Function, which enables you to create individual notes for your tea tastings and general tea information, and collate them from within the app.
Tea Timer, which you can set to a variety of times depending on how long you would like your tea to steep; it also provides some brewing time guidelines to get you started.
Also Available is a collection of tea-inspired recipes, tea events from all over the world, the ability to subscribe to Leaf Hunter magazine, the Australian Tea Masters blog, the ability to subscribe to Tea Journey magazine and to the Rare Tea Club (to receive rare teas delivered to your door every month), and a link to the ITCC (International Tea Cuppers Club).