Tea Sommelier

Having been asked by many clients for support in using tea in their products, it became clear to me that I needed to know a lot more about the industry, the processes, types of tea and how it can be used innovatively in the food industry.


So in 2014, I visited the Dilmah School of Tea in Sri Lanka and learned a tremendous amount about tea types, processes, the regions where it grows, the people who prepare tea, pairing tea with food and making alcoholic and non-alcoholic products with tea.

Not only that, I met some amazing tea people in the process and created many long-lasting connections in the industry.

Inspired and keen to learn even more, I enrolled on The Tea and Herbal Association of Canada’s Tea Sommelier® Certification Program, one of the best tea courses in the world. I spent over two years learning all about growing, processing and making tea, tasting tea, tea’s health benefits, and a lot more.

After some tough written exams, blind tea cuppings and an oral test by the President of the Tea and Herbal Association of Canada on the History and Mythology of Tea, I qualified as a Certified TAC Tea Sommelier Professional, and I’m very proud to say that I was the first UK resident to do so!

As a Certified TAC Tea Sommelier® Professional, I have a thorough knowledge of:

  • Tea history and culture

  • Tea processing methods for different types of tea

  • How to steep / tea preparation

  • Tasting notes for different types of tea

  • The principles behind tea and food pairings

  • How to design a comprehensive tea menu for retail or any food service environment.

With all that knowledge under my belt, I’ve been putting my skills to great use ever since, helping tea businesses and cake and ice cream producers develop new products. I’m proud to be an ambassador, and business development partner for Dilmah tea, and I’ve even been talking to companies about the health and wellbeing benefits of tea.

Here are some examples of ways I can apply my tea knowledge in the food industry.

    • Helping businesses add specific flavours and give certain benefits to their foods by adding teas.
    • Exploring innovative opportunities for making new products with tea.
    • Supporting food and drink companies interested in using tea as an alternative to sugary drinks or alcohol.

If you’re interested in how I can help you explore opportunities to work with tea, please get in touch.

To learn more about the high standards in the TAC TEA SOMMELIER® CERTIFICATION PROGRAM CLICK HERE


Jane Milton

Food industry expert Jane Milton has been in the business for more than 30 years and has the inside track on all things food!

In her podcast, Jane takes you behind the scenes of the food business and introduces you to her incredible network of producers, entrepreneurs and
consultants she works with. She shares inspiring stories and experiences with you to help you to build a stronger, healthier, better version of your own business.

Let Me Introduce You with Jane Milton

Jane Milton
Let Me Introduce You To Francis Gimblett, author of the Gimblett's Guide to The Best of British Cheese, and Co-Owner of Taste of the Vine, an Interactive Food and Drink Events Business. ,
byJane Milton

Let Me Introduce You to Francis Gimblett, Author of Gimblett’s Guide to the Best of British Cheeses, and co Owner of Taste of the Vine, an interactive food and drink event company.

Francis and I met in Spring 2021 when I joined one of his monthly Friday evening meet the cheesemaker tasting sessions. I learned so much and loved meeting the cheesemakers. I told other people and very quickly was joined on screen by 10-12 friends each month ….

My copy of Francis book , Gimblett’s Guide to the Best of British Cheeses has become very well thumbed and through it i have tracked down cheesemakers around the UK and even found a cheesemaking course in Tottenham, London inspired by him.

He is a great story teller so i know you will enjoy hearing about :

  • his journey in food and drink
  • people who have inspired or encouraged him
  • his French mother’s cooking and how that added to his food journey
  • how he has for many years, resisted repitition and always desired change, t learn or to reinvent things BUT
  • how possibly now after almost 2 years of constant change, he my just be happy for a little more predictability for a while
  • we talk about work life balance and partnering in business with his wife
  • about the importance of understanding your P&L and planning for your business right from Day 1
  • we also get a hint or two about his next taste adventure….

I cannot wait

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