Corinthia Hotel Budapest has appointed Eszter Kálmán as the hotel’s dedicated tea sommelier, becoming the first and only hotel in the city to offer this expertise.
Kálmán joins Corinthia Budapest following an exciting career with The East India Company and as junior tea master in London hotels.
Her knowledge of different types, flavours, and cultures of tea is unsurpassable in the city, as is her insight into tea’s harvesting secrets, preparation methods and serving styles.
“When guests enter the bar, I often already know what kind of tea would suit them best,” explained Eszter.
Guests can find Kálmán in the hotel’s Le Bar, which is open daily from 18:30 and features a menu of tea specialties from Eilles Tea House.
Eszter, a long-time gastro-enthusiast, launched her career as a barista with a degree in hospitality and tourism.
Following years of self-education and research on tea, combined with her passion for different cultures, Eszter made the bold decision to move to Europe’s tea-mecca: London.
In London, Eszter was tutored by Jane Pettigrew, world-renowned tea specialist and historian.
These courses instilled in her the skills and knowledge needed to make her way onto the city’s five-star hotel scene, where she started working as a junior tea master advising guests on their tea choices during Afternoon Tea.
Eszter’s thirst for tea-knowledge led her to join The East India Company of London, where she learned the technique of tea blending, sampled exceptional limited-edition types and blends, and assisted an Indian tea master, who divulged his tricks of the trade following 25 years in the tea industry.
“Tea is not only my profession, but indeed my life’s passion – and the positive health benefits have been incredible.
“Tea belongs to the superfood category: it is organic; it detoxes the body and restores a healthy balance; and it can be either energising or relaxing.
“I start every day with a Japanese matcha tea, and I haven’t had any health issues in years.
“Tea is the second most popular drink in the world after water, and my goal in life is to familiarise more Hungarians with it.
“After all, there’s a tea for everyone out there,” said Kálmán.