Cambridge Consultants, an award-winning innovation business, has created a machine that it claims makes perfect, consistent, cups of tea at the touch of a button.
Similar in concept to home espresso machines that use one-shot capsules, the Tê uses capsules of tea, which flavour boiling water as it circulates the system before pouring into a cup.
This means it delivers the flavour of a traditional tea brewing method, but with the convenience of a disposable capsule and the ability to reduce brew time and increase drink quality, the company says.
“Whilst coffee systems have seen a significant amount of innovation over the last decade, nothing has changed in tea brewing, leaving the tea drinker almost forgotten about. We saw a real opportunity to use our experience in the beverage industry to level the playing field and make a step change in this category,” said Edward Brunner, group leader of the Industrial and Scientific Group at Cambridge Consultants.
“Thanks to our expertise in fluidic systems and functional packaging, and our dedicated dispense lab facilities, we have been able to finely tune the process needed to offer the most sophisticated brewing platform to bring customised, high-quality tea dispensing into the home,” he added.
Commercial cafes could be particularly interested in the consistency and speed of the machine. The Tê brews the tea in just two minutes – half the time of a traditional teapot. It also allows for a range of different styles of tea to be offered.
“Contrary to other tea machines on the market, this is based on a genuine tea-brewing process – rather than simply a ‘single-pass flow’ with fresh water. The technology process has been developed with black teas but has the potential to be used across a range of herbal and fruit teas, and other hot drinks,” explained Brunner.