Concubine Oolong Tea (Gui Fei Oolong) is a relatively new type of tea that came about by chance as a result of the earthquake on 09/21/1999 in Taiwan. After the earthquake, many access roads to the tea-growing areas were interrupted, which made it impossible to order and harvest the tea plantations there.
Only after the roads were repaired could the tea plantations be tilled again, but the tea farmers were shocked to find that their tea bushes were infested with the Green Leaf Hopper (Jacobiasca formosana), which injured the tea leaves with its bites and thus the leaf juices of the plant in the injured areas can leak. These immediately begin to oxidize in the air.
This effect was not unknown to tea farmers. You had heard that farmers friends of yours in Hsinchu Township consciously refrain from using pesticides in their tea plantations in order to let the cicadas nibble their tea bushes. These plantations are also about 800 meters above sea level.
The tea farmers in Hsinchu Township produce the popular Oriental Beauty Oolong or Dongfang Meiren 東方 美人 in this way. The tea leaves are very heavily oxidized with 70 - 80% so that one could almost speak of a red oolong. However, it is ensured that there is still enough green content on the tea leaves. Oriental Beauty is not roasted, so the tea leaves then curl when drying.
And this is how the Concubine - Gui Fei Oolong was born:
The farmers from Lugu Township were used to other tea processing methods for their popular Dong Ding Oolong tea and used them to process the “damaged” tea leaves. After the tea leaves have been harvested by hand at 1,600 meters above sea level, the tea leaves nibbled by the cicadas are fermented to a medium degree with around 40 - 50%, then traditionally rolled and roasted.
Careful processing by experienced tea masters gives the Concubine Oolong tea its diverse aroma of honey and citrus. In addition, this Gui Fei Oolong can be brewed much more often than other Oolong teas.
The tea farmers were so enthusiastic about the excellent quality and beauty of your newly created tea variety that they decided to give it a special name.
You remembered the "four beauties" in Chinese mythology who were famous for their extraordinary beauty and were close to the Chinese ruler.
Yang Gui Fei was a concubine of Emperor Xuanzong of the Tang Dynasty, and it was said that her face was more beautiful than any sea of flowers.