These last 4 months, you were so many to ask for an Oriental Beauty Oolong and I kept being disappointed by the samples I tasted... Oriental Beauty farmers are riding the wave of high demand for quality red teas in China (even though OB isn't fully oxidized). They are adapting to this booming market. Top OB with only buds is turned into gold as its fragrances are more and more perfume like. But this trend also means less balance and depth in taste.
But now, the long wait is over! A simpler, more classic Oriental Beauty from the Miaoli/Hsin Chu area has satisfied me. It's not a modern 'top model' kind of OB with a thin, tall fragrance. It's more full body, sweet and with a long after taste. This is the 'classic' profile of good Taiwanese Oolongs.
The smell of the dry leaves is like milk chocolate with hazelnuts! And it has already an intriguing deep old wood fragrance. The taste is much more fruity and full body. Harvested by hand on August 10, 2011, this Oriental Beauty contains all the aromas of Taiwan's hottest month in the countryside.
It's the kind of robust Oolong that can also be kept in a thermos bottle and drunk outdoors anywhere. Here, today, is Banciao's Lin Garden with 2 visitors from France. This historical landmark is a wonderful background for one of Taiwan's most recognized tea internationally. It shows the importance to preserve the classic beauty of the (Chinese) past. Be it architecture or tea culture! This is also why I'm glad to share this and my other teas with you directly!
(In the coming week, I'll review this OB in more detail...)
My name is Stéphane Erler. I live in Taiwan since 1996 and have been studying tea with Teaparker. He's a worldwide tea expert and author of over 30 tea books. The study of tea isn't just theoretical, but it's also rooted in daily practice. It's a path of continuous improvement. As my brewing technique improves I get access to better teas and better accessories. These things go hand in hand. My blog documents my learning since 2004. And I have set up an online tea boutique with my selection of top quality teas, accessories and tea culture.