Bai Hao (Oriental Beauty)

OK, now we are starting to get serious, just to show that I really didn’t start a tea blog to talk about basic Asian market finds… not that there’s anything wrong with that though. This particular Bai Hao comes from a “mainstream” company called Numi. The reason you will see this brand crop up every now and then around here is that I have a fairly good source for this loose tea and while it is not top-notch it is very good and fairly priced for the most part. A grocery store chain called Wegmans about 2.5 hours away from me (but near my alma mater so I am in the area every now and then) has a whole section of the store devoted to tea and large canisters of every Numi tea known to man sold by the pound. However, they have no minimum weight requirement so I could try one of everything and still spend less than $20… and I have. Occasionally they even have some super-rare and fresh selections which vary by season.

This Bai Hao stacks up fairly well to much better leaf I’ve had, and is priced around $30-40/lb. (or $16/lb. on Amazon!) I lack the vocabulary to properly describe it, but I’d place it in the realm of a white tea taste but in an oolong. Slight astringency, very very slight citrus and a hint of bitterness, but overall smooth and light to almost slightly medium in body. The leaves ufurl nicely and are fairly large and in tact… however not anywhere near a much higher quality Bai Hao.
It’s a good daily drinker Bai Hao that won’t break the bank, but won’t take you to the moon and back.

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4 Responses to Bai Hao (Oriental Beauty)

  1. Jenn says:

    I really like bai hao also. I guess it would be a light /dark oolong? hard to decribe since there too many oolongs to compare too. I have bought so many sample sizes from different companies and still not sure which is the best. All I know I havent tasted a bad one yet. This tea to me ids a soother, one for me when I just dont know what to have and cannot decide dark/light? and this one makes me relax very nicely…
    Jenn

  2. kenko says:

    top grade oriental beauty bai hao oolong will take you farther than the moon. with a mellow sweetness, beautiful color, and aroma…splurge and find the best you can from a vendor..
    not a daily drinking tea, special like premium desert wines
    good bai hao from Hsinchu county taiwan, Miaoli is another region there

    kenko

  3. Marlena says:

    Bai hao oolong is the only I’ve found so far that I like and I love it, if it is top quality, It is very expensive, so I only have it on whatever is a special occasion to me

  4. teasphere says:

    Thank you for the comments! Marlena, it can be pretty expensive so don’t be afraid to branch out a bit in oolongs and see if you can’t find some more economical options. Shui Xian is a personal favorite and I could see how a solid Shui Xian would be happily enjoyed by a Bai Hao lover. Even some Darjeelings can exhibit similar flavors and aromas. I’m not affiliated with them, just a happy customer, but check out teaspring.com or sometimes great gems on Houde Asian Art pop up.

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