The Afternoon Tea for the 21st Century contest took place at GulfHost with Pullman Deira City Centre coming out on top as the overall winner in the competition run by Dilmah.
It saw teams of two (a chef paired with an F&B staff member) battle it out to present the best cup of black tea paired with food, an iced tea paired with food, a tea based beverage and a tea indused food item. Each challenger had to bring out seven different dimensions into their creations, namely: cultural, personal, culinary, mixology, sustainability, tea, and harmony.
The contestants were judged on the basis of table layout, menu design and written notes, the novelty and presentation that complements a high tea, the pairing of food with tea, tea preparation, brewing methodology and etiquette, taste harmony, tea inspired food items, team work amongst the two participant, thematic experience – the individual, cultural, tea inspired stories and the use of local products supporting sustainability.
Pullman Deira City Centre won gold for Overall Winner, Best Pairing, and Perfect Cup, beating Aloft DCC, Park Hyatt Abu Dhabi, and Radisson Blu Deira Creek who won gold for one category each.
The prize on offer was a week-long visit to Sri Lanka including five days at Dilma School of Tea and one night at Cape Weligama.