To a crowd of journalists and food enthusiasts, David De Candia, The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf’s Senior Director for Tea revealed his latest creation specially crafted exclusively for the Filipinos, Paradise Blend.
The internationally renowned tea specialist, David De Candia, arrived in Manila for a series of workshops entitled “Discover Tea.” After an insightful discussion on tea, guests were treated to different activities meant to help them jumpstart their journey into the exciting world of tea.
The art of blending
Throughout his career, De Candia has gained numerous recognitions and awards for his mastery of the craft and appointed by- no less than the Prime Minister of Sri Lanka- as the Ambassador of Ceylon Tea for North America and Canada. But for the 21 years that he’s been with The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf, the resident Tea Master, Buyer and Blender has created hundreds of signature blends that are now enjoyed worldwide.
In his talk, De Candia defined the technicalities of tea — how it’s sourced, how it’s prepared, and how it’s best enjoyed. From traveling to private, family-owned tea estates in 10 countries all over the world to work directly with the tea growers, De Candia ensures that their tea blends are perfectly crafted from leaf to cup using only sustainably grown teas that are hand-plucked and hand-processed.
“We’ve tried the best that we can to elevate the importance of a direct source relationship at The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf. When we’re dealing with grower-direct relationships, we can create a product to be exactly what we want. And it’s not just about price, it’s not just about availability, it’s about creating something that nobody else has,” David adds.
During the event, guests were able to experience the art of blending that includes teaching how to properly steep, choosing the right mix of ingredients, tea scenting and styling, and pairing that perfect cup with a signature pastry from The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf.
In between activities, the renowned Tea Master answered some questions from the guests. “People always ask me about the right formula in making tea — it’s actually attention. Take time to focus on what you’re doing.” David says.
A blend for the Philippines
A perfectionist of sorts, De Candia is in charge for making sure only the finest teas are served at The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf. A testament to this is his first blend, the Chai, a mix of 14 different herbs, spices, and ingredients and one of the bestselling teas, took him 8 months to develop. In a similar fashion has he crafted the Paradise Blend, an herbal tea infusion he specifically created with the Filipino taste in mind.
The Paradise Blend is a fruity infusion of Philippine tropical fruits, mango, orange, and carrots with Rooibos tea as its base, and notes of apple and citrus. When asked about his inspiration for the tea, De Candia says, “Our Philippine partners from The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf sent me different ingredients from their country. From there, I got the inspiration to make this blend.”
A refreshing take on tea that can be either enjoyed hot or cold, the Paradise Blend is currently available in all The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf stores nationwide.
Steeped in passion
As he continues to pursue his passion for tea, De Candia encourages people to discover more about tea – even in a country where coffee often trumps as the beverage of choice. Resting his case for choosing this drink, he emphasized that a fresh brew can easily heighten one’s senses and improve overall wellness.
On dedication and innovation, the tea specialist also added that, “If I can, I’d study more about what Filipinos like and do more blends for them. After all, we are not The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf if we don’t continue innovating.”
Moreover, the Tea Master took the chance to remind everyone that this is just a beginning as The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf will carry on their long-held passion for going way deeper than the bottom of the cup to serve the best and the finest teas in the world.
To jumpstart your journey to the world of tea, go to www.coffeebean.com.ph/ or visit The Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf (Philippines) on Facebook and @cbtlph on Instagram.