Oriental Beauty Oolong, also known as Dong Fang Mei Ren (東方美人), is a unique oolong that belongs to the category of ‘bug-bitten’ teas. This version has been compressed into small Cha Bing (茶餅) tea cakes that weight approximately 100g each. These oolong cakes are made from a Jin Xuan (金萱) or Golden Daylily cultivar that is grown at an altitude of 200-300m in Emei Township of Hsinchu County, Taiwan. It was hand picked, baked and pressed in March 2020.
These Oriental Beauty Oolong Cakes are a new creation from our tea master in Taiwan. They are designed so you can enjoy drinking them straight away but also so that they can be put away for ageing. Given the provenance we think long-term results should be rather good!
Oriental Beauty Oolong is classed as a ‘beauty tea’, which is a highly unusual class of oolongs, affected by the presence of little green leaf hoppers that nibble the tea leaves during growth. The tea plants react to this attack by producing more polyphenols, which during processing give the unique ‘beauty tea’ flavour, usually described as a honey-like taste and aroma. Oriental Beauty Oolong is perhaps the most well-known example of a beauty tea and represents a heavily oxidised oolong, which can sometimes be incorrectly classed as a black tea. However, there are also other slightly less oxidised varieties such as our Gui Fei Oolong.
This version of Oriental Beauty is made from fine handpicked leaves that are 70-80% oxidised and compressed into small 100g cakes. It produces an aromatic dark amber liquor with a fruity honey scent. The dominant fruity taste is full-bodied and bold. Compared to some other beauty teas, this one does not have an overpowering floral honey sweetness, instead delivering nicely balanced malty and mineral fruity flavours. Of course the expected ‘bug-bitten’ muscatel flavour is present throughout, although it is not as prominent. This tea delivers a fine balance achieved by a lasting sweetness impression and tangy flavours. The aftertaste is clean, with lightly sweet mineral flavours and aromatic medicinal notes. This is an intriguing version for any fans of Oriental Beauty Oolong teas!
This tea is best brewed with water at 90°C for 2-3 minutes and the leaves can be brewed 3+ times. For best results brew gong fu style, allowing extra time on the first infusion to open the leaves.