Oolong is truly the most complicated tea to manufacture. In the world of gourmet tea, no other tea amazes and fascinates as much as this one. In the Far East, she is known as the Champagne Oolong. Bai Hao is not only extraordinary by flavor, but also for the way it is made.
According to a Chinese legend a farmer left his tea garden because he was too preoccupied with a different business. His tea garden was left unattended, and while he was gone his garden was attacked by a large number of green flies called leafhoppers. When leafhoppers chew on those juicy tea buds, they deposit a tiny amount of saliva. This oolong tea has the highest level of oxidation, which transforms the saliva and tea chemicals into honey-sweet fruity flavors. Nevertheless, the farmer processed the tea leaves as he could not afford to lose his tea harvest.
Bai Hao became so fashionable that at that time, 33 lbs. of this tea were equivalent to the price of a house in Taiwan.
The name “Oriental Beauty” came from Queen Victoria. When she tasted it for the first time, she was astounded by its beauty and taste.
Bai Hao was awarded the Silver medal in the World Food Exposition held in England around 1960.
Making Bai Hao oolong tea takes a lot of skill. It is a very tedious work to only select and pluck the leaves attacked by green flies which appear during June to July. Not only does the tea garden have to be maintained without using pesticides, but it also needs a lot of good luck to get this tiny insect down. The farmer has to keep his tea garden as natural as possible with the hope that green flies will return each year.
This specific choice was selected from a garden in the Fujian Province of China and it won the Gold Medal in the Hangzhou International tea competition, and the Silver medal at Shizuoka, Japan.
Bai Hao is one of most renowned oolong teas and has natural fruity aromas with notes of peaches that produce a sweet and spring honey tasting bright-reddish orange tea liquor.
Heat Water to 195-205 F, steep 4 minutes