New ways to experience tea
The events of 2020 forced us to press pause on many things we planned to do, though technology opened our eyes to new and imaginative ways of conducting our lives. Now it is time to look forward, press play and reinstate plans that were postponed.
AUSTCS is pleased to present the 2021 Brisbane Australian Tea Cultural Seminar 11-12 September 2021
The theme of our 2021 seminar will be ‘New ways to experience tea’, capturing the dual aspects of multi-sensory engagement and industry innovation.
We will, for the first time, host the seminar at two locations: the heritage environment of Loyal Hope, Brisbane, and the Sunshine Coast’s beautiful hinterland at the award-winning Arakai Estate.
Day 1: Loyal Hope of the Valley, Brisbane
Steps away from Brisbane’s bustling café scene of James Street in Fortitude Valley is Loyal Hope of the Valley.
Constructed in 1923, this white-timbered country hall features original timber floors and spectacular lighting. Originally built for a philanthropic society, and as a meeting place for the people of Brisbane, the hall recently underwent loving restoration taking it back to its former glory.
‘Welcome by Tea’ will be served on Day 1 inside this unique venue. It is where you will receive your complimentary AUSTCS 2021 cup and hear about its journey from the potter’s hands to your lips. The day will also feature our keynote speakers, replete with refreshments.
Karl Lee is an award-winning sensory educator and consultant, bringing his expertise as a Coffee Quality Institute Certified Q Grader and a 2020 Australian Specialty Coffee Association Brewers Cup Sensory Judge to the tea world. He is also the 2020 Australian Specialty Coffee Association QLD Cup Tasters Champion. He operates as KL Specialty Coffee Education & Consulting and has poured his passion into a new YouTube channel
Day 2: Arakai Estate, Bellthorpe
Day 2 will commence with a 90-minute bus journey to award-winning tea farm Arakai Estate, one of Australia’s most innovative tea producers.
Arakai is owned and operated by the Collins family – Brendon, his wife Kristie, and Brendon’s parents Darryl and Lorraine – who have very kindly opened their farm gate to seminar delegates. Expect an intimate tour of the tea plantation and a stimulating forum.
The estate boasts Australian native trees for which Arakai Estate has previously earnt the accolade of Queensland Tree Farmer of the Year. Today, the family has ventured into a variety of crops including avocado, ginger and, of course, our beloved Camellia sinensis from which they produce their award-winning teas.
The name ‘Arakai’ represents almost three decades of sustainable native timber farming and pays homage to a significant local timber species, the mighty Araucaria. These majestic trees, commonly known as Hoop Pine or Bunya Pine, can be seen across the Sunshine Coast’s beautiful hinterlands.
The teas at Arakai are from Japanese variants of the plant, grown in the lush and fertile Bellthorpe terroir and processed Taiwanese style. These three factors produce unique teas of excellent quality, with a flavour that suits the Aussie market.
Ceramic Cup Competition
The 2021 seminar also marks the fourth round of our now world-famous Ceramic Cup Competition.
A passion project by Kym Cooper, the competition complements our ritual of ‘Welcome by Tea’ while developing a relationship with the ceramics community through a partnership with the Australian Ceramics Association.
From early 2021, Australian potters will be invited to submit a teacup for judging, with the winning ceramicist to be commissioned to produce the AUSTCS cup for 2021.
Our previous AUSTCS Ceramic Cup Competition winners have been Annemieke Mulder in 2018, Minna Graham in 2019 and Christopher Plumridge in 2020. Are you up for the challenge?
Keep an eye out on our social channels for the commencement of the competition and check out the Cup Competition Page for details.
Become a partner
The Australian Tea Cultural Seminar offers an opportunity for businesses or groups to become a Partner of this unique event. This is an event where your company or group can be highlighted as a forward thinking and imaginative entity. Take this opportunity to help shape the future of Australian tea culture.