Bruce Richardson

Master Blender, Elmwood Inn Fine Teas
Tea Master, Boston Tea Party Ships & Museum
Contributing Editor, TeaTime magazine
Author of The New Tea Companion, A Social History of Tea, Tea & Etiquette


Tea blender, writer, and historian Bruce Richardson has been one of the leading voices in America's tea renaissance since founding Elmwood Inn Fine Teas over 30 years ago. He is a frequent guest speaker at global tea events and a source for tea articles found in Slate Magazine, MTV, CNN, The Smithsonian, National Geographic, New York Times, Washington Post, Wall Street Journal, USA Today, and the BBC.  He serves as Contributing Editor for TeaTime magazine.

In 2011, Bruce was named Tea Master for the Boston Tea Party Ships & Museum, where he is helping define tea's historical role in the iconic 1773 event that helped shape America's destiny.

Bruce has mentored or advised over 450 aspiring tea professionals, including Fortune 500 companies, as they investigated tea's future in the world marketplace. His reputation as a tea designer with an artful eye has led to commissions to design signature teas for such museums as the Yale Center for British Art, the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, The Peabody Essex Museum, The Cincinnati Museum of Art, and the Georgia O'Keeffe Museum.

In 2017, the HPLY Chinese fashion brand commissioned Bruce to design a bespoke tea line and appear at their summer runway show in Shanghai. 

Bruce edited and expanded Okakura Kakuzo's classic Book of Tea for Benjamin Press in 2011. He has lectured on Japanese Tea and Art at the UK Tea Academy in London, Centre College, the University of Kentucky, and Yamaguchi Prefecture University in Japan.

Bruce joined London's Jane Pettigrew in producing three editions of the popular reference guide to tea The New Tea Companion for both Benjamin Press and the National Trust of England. Bruce and Jane's latest work is an expanded edition of  A Social History of Tea: Tea's Influence on Commerce, Culture, and Civility. Both books have been translated into Chinese for publication in China.

Bruce is much in demand as a speaker at events across North America and Asia. His most popular lectures are Five Teas That Launched a Revolution, The Tea Things of Janes Austen, Charles Rennie Mackintosh and the Glasgow Tearoom Movement, and Japanese Tea and The Beautiful Foolishness of Things. 

“In the tea-making ritual, we rediscover our humanity, which has become obscured amid a life that is often moving too fast and filled with too much.” 

Bruce Richardson, The New York Times, December 20, 2023


Bruce Richardson's audiences have included: 

  • Albuquerque Museum
  • Boston Tea Party Ships & Museum
  • Chicago International Tea Festival
  • China Global Tea Fair, Shenzhen
  • Dallas Museum of Art
  • Frist Museum, Nashville
  • Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe
  • Global Tea Institute, UC Davis
  • Historic Locust Grove Lecture Series, Louisville
  • Jane Austen Society of North America
  • Midwest Tea Festival, Kansas City
  • Monticello, Charlottesville, VA
  • Museum of American Arts & Crafts, St. Petersburg, FL
  • Northwest Tea Festival
  • NYC Coffee & Tea Festival
  • Old South Meeting House Lecture Series, Boston
  • P. Allen Smith's Garden Home (PBS)
  • SAIL Gourmet Food Show, Shanghai
  • St. Regis Hotel, NYC
  • Teas of the United States Competition, Hawaii
  • TeaTime Magazine Retreat, Birmingham
  • The Protocol School of Washington
  • UK Tea Academy, London
  • University of Kentucky School of Fine Arts
  • WYES-TV PBS, New Orleans
  • Vizcaya Museum, Miami
  • Western Kentucky University Library Authors' Lectures
  • Winterthur Museum, Delaware
  • World Tea Expo, Las Vegas
  • Yamaguchi Prefecture University, Japan

For more information about booking Bruce Richardson as a speaker at your event, contact


Follow Bruce Richardson at The Tea Maestro Blog

See the trailer for the new documentary 9 DRAGONS TEA, featuring Bruce Richardson.
Listen to the TeaBiz Podcast featuring Bruce Richardson.
Listen to the Enchantea Podcast featuring Bruce Richardson
Watch Bruce on Burt Wolf Travels & Traditions Tea for Two (PBS).
Porter Air Inflight Magazine Interviews Bruce Richardson