Friday, January 13, 2017

Origns Tea: Gui Fei, A Tea Review

Well, if the weather is correct it is going to be an icy apocalypse soon. High winds and lots of ice incoming means we might lose power...which will make for a very cranky me! Mostly because we have an electric stove and no access to tea, though really I am worried about Ben who is going to be out working in that crap. I have to admit, his work does have me not liking extreme weather as much as I used to, I want to move somewhere temperate but know I would go crazy without my storms. Fingers crossed that the prediction is extreme and we just get snow or something fun instead of ice craziness....and that we don't lose power!

So, what is the kind of tea you drink when you are about to raid the Lich King's Tower in the Twilight Forest? Clearly, you need something sweet and strong, while also being long-lasting, so I decided to reach for Origins Tea's Gui Fei. You all know my obsession with this (and all) bug-bitten Oolong by this point, so this isn't really a surprise. Opening up the package, the first thing I notice is how nutty this Gui Fei is, strong notes of pecan and almond with cooked plums, cooked peaches a touch of lychee, and a hint of tulip and orchid blossoms. It has a very heady undertone, one that I can definitely tell will become stronger once steeped.

I was right! This is a very floral Gui Fei, strong notes of tulip, orchid, and hyacinth mix with plums and peaches with a strong pecan finish. Sadly this is not one of those Gui Feis that smells of orange blossoms for its floral notes, but tulips are quite nice so I am not too distraught. The liquid is also very heady, strong notes of orchid and tulip with a hint of hyacinth, alongside flowers is a strong plum and mild peach with a hint of honey.

The tasting starts out thick and sweet, almost syrupy in both its texture in taste, with a strong floral presence that just does not quit. This might be the headiest Gui Fei I have tasted, which such a distinct note of tulip and an accompaniment of hyacinth, There are also notes of pecans, prunes, and cooked peaches, adding sweetness and a touch of earthiness from the prunes. The aftertaste of orchid and peaches last for quite a while.

The second steep adds something a little odd, I notice this sometimes with bug-bitten or post-frost Oolongs, though previously I had only noticed this on Jin Xuan, so maybe this Gui Fei is from the Jin Xuan varietal. It has an aroma and taste of dead orchids, that moment when the flower is immensely heady but also having lived its life and either fallen off the plant or just about to. It is not gross, as much as saying it smells like a dead thing would be, but it is weird...especially since most people I talk to who have the same tea don't notice it at all...just proving that people's tastes can be super weird sometimes. This note gets stronger as the steeps progress too, though the note of prunes and peaches also strengthen.

The leaves have really unfurled quite a bit by the third steep, also I have defeated the Lich King for anyone curious, pity he is a character in a game, he would probably like this tea, because liches love tea, as do necromancers. By this steep all that is left is fruity sweetness and flowery intensity, sadly the nuttiness from earlier has vanished, but what is left is quite intense. I sat with this tea for several more steeps (ok I am still sitting with it, seven steeps in, still going strong) and I have mixed feelings towards it. It is a good tea, quite tasty, but not usually what I like in a gui fei (oh surprise, I am picky about one of my favorite kinds of tea) so it didn't really satiate the craving I had.

This tea was sent for review purposes by the company.

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