Oriental Beauty was the most precious tea in 20th century Taiwan. It traveled to the West and was given its name by an English Queen for the beautiful complexity of flavor.
It is also known as champagne oolong or Bai Hao oolong. Muscat grape is the signature aroma of this tea, brought to life by the tiny tea crickets Jacobiasca formosana.
When the tea plant is bitten by this insect, its defense mechanism secretes a specific hormone for preservation. As the tea leaves undergo intensive oxidation during tea processing, muscat-like aroma flourishes. The tea crickets thrive in warm weather and are especially active at bookends of summer, causing the harvest to be extremely seasonal.
The highest grade of Oriental Beauty we offer is of limited quantity. It's only when nature cooperates in early Summer, there is an abundance of crickets when the tea plant is at its healthiest and fullest. Higher amounts of bites mean more intense honey sweetness in the final infusion, bringing more depth and character.
We got the last gram of this batch from the family that has been making Oriental Beauty for four generations.