top of page

365 Challenge > Day 137 - Nantou Gui Fei Oolong Tea 2018

I knew there is a vast world of oolong tea out there and Taiwanese oolongs are those that I have explored the least. Luckily, I got hold of this oolong which was an exceptional experience despite that the quantity was low, and I have already finished it. When I write reviews, I like smelling the dry leaves over and over again, this time, I do not have that luxury. However, I kept the infused leaves in my luggage (I was travelling), and when I found them after a couple of days, they still smelt heavenly. I was tempted to re-steep them, but I did not.

When I first steeped this tea, I had hot water in my thermos, which was not warm enough to infuse this tea. Therefore, all the aromas and tastes were faint. Next time when I had a chance to re-steep this tea, I realised that its liquid should be cupper colour for the best-tasting experience. I achieved this colour with boiling water and at least two minutes steeping at the beginning as it took a while for the leaves to unfurl. The wet leaves had a very flowery aroma while the liquor also tasted smoky and lingering honey-sweet. This might be the sweetest oolong I have ever had. I was thinking about what the reason would be.

The answer is in nature. Similar to Bai Hao (oriental beauty) oolong, the buds of this Gui Fei were also bitten by a leafhopper species who leave a white mark it leaves behind. Their intervention results in live oxidation while the leaves are still on the stem making the leaf to develop a honey-life flavour and aroma. It is also worth to mention that these leafhoppers would not visit these plants if any pesticides were in use.

Overall, this was a fabulous example of a Taiwanese oolong with high oxidation and low roasting. I will get hold of more when I am back in China. Hopefully, soon.

Tea Profile:

Type: Oolong

Origin: Lugu, Nantou, Taiwan

Harvest time: April 2018

Leave colour: Tones of dark brown

Liquor colour: Cupper

Tea aroma: Smoky with tobacco and floral notes

Tea taste: Lingering sweet honey taste with accompanying floral and smoky notes

Steeping/brewing: You can use around 100°C water temperature and brew for about two minutes in gongfu style or up to three minutes in Western-style. You can brew the leaves many times (until the taste is lost). To each infusion add additional time. Experiment for a result that suits your taste.

Shelf life: Up to 2 years or more (some keep it in the fridge to improve the shelf life but for this you need to ensure that the tea is tightly sealed)

13 views0 comments


bottom of page