Updated: Jun 15, 2021
Sparkling Teas are Nicely Suited to Gourmet Dining
Jacob Kocemba, a Copenhagen-based sommelier credited with creating a new genre of low-alcohol teas has produced a range that’s elegant, contemporary and interesting.
It all started when Kocemba was head sommelier at a restaurant in his native Denmark. His head chef requested a wine to pair with a new dessert for the next day. It was a dessert that used an expensive French strawberry.
“In my wine cellar I had 1,700 wines,” says Kocemba, “but none of them matched the dessert.” He decided to step away and sleep on it. The next morning, there was still no wine he was happy with. So he went to the pastry chef, tasted each ingredient that was going into the dessert, then tasted them all combined. In a moment of inspiration, he stared for a moment at his tea shelf and saw many possibilities. That night he created a drink with tea that was an unexpected success that became special but not yet finished.
“Someone introduced me to carbon dioxide. I had every fifth weekend off, and started working with it,” says Kocemba. In 2011, a couple of years after his first forays into tea, Kocemba started the Kocemba Sparkling Tea Company. Three years later, he was back working as a manager in a Michelin-starred restaurant. But evidently, he could not leave the story of sparkling tea incomplete. So in 2016, once again, he quit his job to pursue his work with sparkling tea. In 2017, he partnered with Bo Stan Hansen to launch Sparkling Tea Co. in Copenhagen.
Kocemba talks about sparkling tea as one does of wine or champagne. It’s a category unto itself, with plenty going for it. But is it for the wine lover or the tea devotee? Both, says Jacob. “You will find a lot of links to the tea, you will recognize it as a tea drinker. Others will recognize the balance and sweetness and acidity, depending on what they are familiar with.”
You can make yourself with Korean Green Tea mixed with sparkling water - see the above photo.
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