Vieux Pontarlier http://www.wormwoodsociety.org/media/reviews/photos/thumbnail/300x300s/a3/0c/47/483_absinthe-vieux-pontarlier-741-1331855888.jpg

 
4.1 (4)
 
3.8 (15)
 

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Degrees ABV (% alcohol)
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Editor reviews

Average editor rating from: 4 user(s)

Overall rating 
 
4.1
Appearance 
 
4.5  (4)
Louche 
 
4.5  (4)
Aroma 
 
4.3  (4)
Flavor / Mouthfeel 
 
3.8  (4)
Finish 
 
3.3  (4)
Overall 
 
4.0  (4)

The colour out of the bottle is a perfect peridot with no debris or haze. It smells alcoholic. A bit minty with some anise, some perfume. Grassy.

The louche starts slow and then explodes. Thick, opalescent green. Beautiful. I expected the aroma to really open up with water but it didn't. It's relatively light. Fruity anise with minty wormwood in a good balance. Sweet but earthy.

It has a much stronger flavour than expected. Fruity and almost too bright (jangly in fact), yet creamy in texture. Very numbing. Loads of citrus. Wormwood is hard-hitting but tasty.

I'm not finding the finish as quick to recede as others have, but rather that it's unremarkable and indistinctive. More of the same, just paler and thinner. As it fades the wormwood sort of begins to taste like dill.

I'm enjoying this but it's like playing guitar on a brand new set of strings. Some people like that but I find it irritating, buzzy, and piercing. It's not a deal-breaker but it definitely impacts my ability to enjoy its best attributes.
Overall rating 
 
4.0
Appearance 
 
5.0
Louche 
 
5.0
Aroma 
 
4.0
Flavor / Mouthfeel 
 
3.0
Finish 
 
3.0
Overall 
 
4.0
Reviewed by Andrew Young July 14, 2011
Top 50 Reviewer  -   View all my reviews (60)

New set of strings.

The colour out of the bottle is a perfect peridot with no debris or haze. It smells alcoholic. A bit minty with some anise, some perfume. Grassy.

The louche starts slow and then explodes. Thick, opalescent green. Beautiful. I expected the aroma to really open up with water but it didn't. It's relatively light. Fruity anise with minty wormwood in a good balance. Sweet but earthy.

It has a much stronger flavour than expected. Fruity and almost too bright (jangly in fact), yet creamy in texture. Very numbing. Loads of citrus. Wormwood is hard-hitting but tasty.

I'm not finding the finish as quick to recede as others have, but rather that it's unremarkable and indistinctive. More of the same, just paler and thinner. As it fades the wormwood sort of begins to taste like dill.

I'm enjoying this but it's like playing guitar on a brand new set of strings. Some people like that but I find it irritating, buzzy, and piercing. It's not a deal-breaker but it definitely impacts my ability to enjoy its best attributes.

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Color: A very nice, vibrant peridot green.

Louche: Great louche build. Completely louched by about 2:1. Deep, opalescent and vibrant with tints of green still showing through. Very nice.

Aroma: an appetizing blend of ansie sweetness with some earthiness and a bit of peppery spice.

Flavor: Quite sweet, even without sugar. A nice dose of white pepper spice at the back of the tongue. Nice wormwood, but I'd like it to be a tad bit more prominant.

Finish: I pick up the wormwood a bit more on the finish as it plays nicely witht he anise. Some definite anethole numbing, with some warmth going down the throat.

Overall: Quite enjoyable! Definitely a keeper. A smart buy for anyone looking for a traditional absinthe profile.
Overall rating 
 
4.1
Appearance 
 
4.0
Louche 
 
5.0
Aroma 
 
4.0
Flavor / Mouthfeel 
 
4.0
Finish 
 
3.0
Overall 
 
4.0
Reviewed by Brian Robinson May 01, 2009
#1 Reviewer  -   View all my reviews (165)

Another enjoyable verte

Color: A very nice, vibrant peridot green.

Louche: Great louche build. Completely louched by about 2:1. Deep, opalescent and vibrant with tints of green still showing through. Very nice.

Aroma: an appetizing blend of ansie sweetness with some earthiness and a bit of peppery spice.

Flavor: Quite sweet, even without sugar. A nice dose of white pepper spice at the back of the tongue. Nice wormwood, but I'd like it to be a tad bit more prominant.

Finish: I pick up the wormwood a bit more on the finish as it plays nicely witht he anise. Some definite anethole numbing, with some warmth going down the throat.

Overall: Quite enjoyable! Definitely a keeper. A smart buy for anyone looking for a traditional absinthe profile.

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After three glasses on three different days, I think this is a very good absinthe. I don't think it is particularly remarkable but it is quite pleasing. It is pretty in glass both before and after adding water. The louche is pleasant. The mouth feel is a little thin but certainly nice enough. The Wormwood jumps to the forefront but it's not the most pleasing flavor, more bitter than floral. The finish instead of lingering, fades away quickly and it doesn't really beckon for another sip.

Certainly it is a well-made absinthe and deserving of consideration. It's very good, just not really remarkable.
Overall rating 
 
4.1
Appearance 
 
4.0
Louche 
 
4.0
Aroma 
 
5.0
Flavor / Mouthfeel 
 
4.0
Finish 
 
3.0
Overall 
 
4.0
Reviewed by Joe Legate February 22, 2009
Top 50 Reviewer  -   View all my reviews (26)

Pretty Good Stuff

After three glasses on three different days, I think this is a very good absinthe. I don't think it is particularly remarkable but it is quite pleasing. It is pretty in glass both before and after adding water. The louche is pleasant. The mouth feel is a little thin but certainly nice enough. The Wormwood jumps to the forefront but it's not the most pleasing flavor, more bitter than floral. The finish instead of lingering, fades away quickly and it doesn't really beckon for another sip.

Certainly it is a well-made absinthe and deserving of consideration. It's very good, just not really remarkable.

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Color
Beautiful lighter (but not pale) golden-green with flawless clarity. Very jewel-like and breathtaking in how natural a "new leaf" essence it exhibits.

Louche
Very nice initial louche. Great oily looking trails. Clear delineation of layers... Cloudiness on bottom, roiling trails in the middle, and clear unlouched layer on top. Very entertaining and pretty. At 1:1, things start happening more quickly, and drink is mostly opaque by 2:1. Very creamy looking louche. Final color is a very pearlescent yellowish-green with yellow highlights and milky white at the meniscus.

Aroma
First impression is clean and fresh. A hint of citrus, florals, creamy, fruity (yes, I finally get that fruity thing!) wormwood, and a slight hint of vanillins. A little swirl brings the anise/fennel duo into play in excellent balance. This absinthe doesn't feature one herb in a starring role with a great supporting cast. It is a perfect ensemble performance, yet each herb is clearly identifiable. Now that's a neat trick! The aromas of each component are very fresh, herbal, floral and immediate, but not heavy handed, and together are brought into focus by a slight hint of lemon curd and mint.

Flavor
First of all, just creamy mouth-feel with a nice tension created by the "pull" and drying of the wormwood and hyssop. Everything the nose tells me is present in the palate. Anise leads the charge by an iota, but all other herbs are clearly present and accounted for. As with the nose, the flavors are very immediate and fresh. Nothing timid here, however this absinthe is not trying to make it's impression by horsepower alone. There is a nice spice and a beautiful very high grade drying impression from the wormwood. As I review my notes for all evaluations, three things are a recurrent theme... finesse, complexity, and balance.

Finish
Beautiful and satisfying gentle wormwood "pinch" on the palate to wrap up the whole package. The finish, as a whole, follows the nose and palate perfectly, with very good length and just a little additional burst of spice. Again, nothing about this is heavy handed or clumsy. The word "fine" keeps coming to mind. Do I want another sip?... Sorry, already took it!

Overall
So much to like and admire here. This goes down way too easily. I guess now I'm going to have to order the Jades just to dial some perspective in to this end of the spectrum. This is everything any great beverage is made of... high quality, balanced, distinctive. Has a real artisanal presence. In my third evaluation, at one point I got up and left the room. On my way back to my desk, I couldn't help but notice (from 6 feet away) how extraordinary just the color was. That's what I'm talking about. Artful from every angle. This is a fine traditional offering.

7/05/09 Revisit - While most of my initial impressions persist, well... I did order the Jades, and several other elite-tier absinthes since my initial review of VP. An additional eight months as an absinthe taster, and experience with a broader range of offerings has demonstrated to me that my initial scores of 5s for Aroma, Flavor, and Finish here were not warranted, so I have changed them to 4s. No offense to VP, it is still a well above average offering and provides plenty of bang for the buck. Overall a real winner!

Done with a 1 ounce dose, diluted 3:1, 4:1, and no sugar.

Vieux Pontarlier 10/31/08, 11/03/08, 11/09/08, 7/05/09.
All evaluations had consistent notes.
Overall rating 
 
4.2
Appearance 
 
5.0
Louche 
 
4.0
Aroma 
 
4.0
Flavor / Mouthfeel 
 
4.0
Finish 
 
4.0
Overall 
 
4.0
Reviewed by Michael Meyers November 12, 2008
Last updated: September 12, 2012
Top 10 Reviewer  -   View all my reviews (53)

A Winning Traditional Verte!

Color
Beautiful lighter (but not pale) golden-green with flawless clarity. Very jewel-like and breathtaking in how natural a "new leaf" essence it exhibits.

Louche
Very nice initial louche. Great oily looking trails. Clear delineation of layers... Cloudiness on bottom, roiling trails in the middle, and clear unlouched layer on top. Very entertaining and pretty. At 1:1, things start happening more quickly, and drink is mostly opaque by 2:1. Very creamy looking louche. Final color is a very pearlescent yellowish-green with yellow highlights and milky white at the meniscus.

Aroma
First impression is clean and fresh. A hint of citrus, florals, creamy, fruity (yes, I finally get that fruity thing!) wormwood, and a slight hint of vanillins. A little swirl brings the anise/fennel duo into play in excellent balance. This absinthe doesn't feature one herb in a starring role with a great supporting cast. It is a perfect ensemble performance, yet each herb is clearly identifiable. Now that's a neat trick! The aromas of each component are very fresh, herbal, floral and immediate, but not heavy handed, and together are brought into focus by a slight hint of lemon curd and mint.

Flavor
First of all, just creamy mouth-feel with a nice tension created by the "pull" and drying of the wormwood and hyssop. Everything the nose tells me is present in the palate. Anise leads the charge by an iota, but all other herbs are clearly present and accounted for. As with the nose, the flavors are very immediate and fresh. Nothing timid here, however this absinthe is not trying to make it's impression by horsepower alone. There is a nice spice and a beautiful very high grade drying impression from the wormwood. As I review my notes for all evaluations, three things are a recurrent theme... finesse, complexity, and balance.

Finish
Beautiful and satisfying gentle wormwood "pinch" on the palate to wrap up the whole package. The finish, as a whole, follows the nose and palate perfectly, with very good length and just a little additional burst of spice. Again, nothing about this is heavy handed or clumsy. The word "fine" keeps coming to mind. Do I want another sip?... Sorry, already took it!

Overall
So much to like and admire here. This goes down way too easily. I guess now I'm going to have to order the Jades just to dial some perspective in to this end of the spectrum. This is everything any great beverage is made of... high quality, balanced, distinctive. Has a real artisanal presence. In my third evaluation, at one point I got up and left the room. On my way back to my desk, I couldn't help but notice (from 6 feet away) how extraordinary just the color was. That's what I'm talking about. Artful from every angle. This is a fine traditional offering.

7/05/09 Revisit - While most of my initial impressions persist, well... I did order the Jades, and several other elite-tier absinthes since my initial review of VP. An additional eight months as an absinthe taster, and experience with a broader range of offerings has demonstrated to me that my initial scores of 5s for Aroma, Flavor, and Finish here were not warranted, so I have changed them to 4s. No offense to VP, it is still a well above average offering and provides plenty of bang for the buck. Overall a real winner!

Done with a 1 ounce dose, diluted 3:1, 4:1, and no sugar.

Vieux Pontarlier 10/31/08, 11/03/08, 11/09/08, 7/05/09.
All evaluations had consistent notes.

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User reviews

Average user rating from: 15 user(s)

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Overall rating 
 
3.8
Appearance 
 
4.2  (15)
Louche 
 
4.1  (15)
Aroma 
 
3.3  (15)
Flavor / Mouthfeel 
 
3.7  (15)
Finish 
 
3.1  (15)
Overall 
 
3.8  (15)
Pre-louche the color is a proper and natural green. A vibrant, lighter green. When louched, it is quite milky while retaining much of the green coloring. With that said... positives are over.

The aroma is odd. Sort of a mintiness combined with what I can only describe as a "bubblegum" scent. These attributes are also strongly present in the taste. Not what I would expect in an absinthe. I have known no other absinthe out of the 15+ varieties I've had up to this point to have any such characteristics. It's just plain odd.

Vieux Pontarlier looks the part with proper coloring and louche but falls so far short with these aroma and flavor oddities...

I really expected more from this absinthe!

Overall rating 
 
3.1
Appearance 
 
4.0
Louche 
 
4.5
Aroma 
 
2.5
Flavor / Mouthfeel 
 
2.5
Finish 
 
3.0
Overall 
 
2.5
Reviewed by josephlabrecque September 08, 2013
Top 50 Reviewer  -   View all my reviews (27)

Such unexpected flavors...

Pre-louche the color is a proper and natural green. A vibrant, lighter green. When louched, it is quite milky while retaining much of the green coloring. With that said... positives are over.

The aroma is odd. Sort of a mintiness combined with what I can only describe as a "bubblegum" scent. These attributes are also strongly present in the taste. Not what I would expect in an absinthe. I have known no other absinthe out of the 15+ varieties I've had up to this point to have any such characteristics. It's just plain odd.

Vieux Pontarlier looks the part with proper coloring and louche but falls so far short with these aroma and flavor oddities...

I really expected more from this absinthe!

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Appearance: Extra green, without being too dark.

Louche: When louched it's a pretty light green, but it's extremely milky and thick.

Aroma: Hella minty, with a bit of a still scent, and a somewhat masked smell that's redolent of rubber.

Flavor/Mouthfeel: Light and creamy in texture, but really, really minty, and something vegetal is coming through on the flavor that I don't particularly like. It ends up fairly bitter in the end.

Finish: The finish is very fuzzy in the mouth and there's some alcohol heat that takes a long time to fade.

Overall: There are some quality aspects of this absinthe, but there are also some pretty disappointing flaws. Maybe this used to be passable in an absinthe, but there's so many better options out there, especially from Pernot.
Overall rating 
 
3.0
Appearance 
 
4.5
Louche 
 
3.0
Aroma 
 
2.0
Flavor / Mouthfeel 
 
3.0
Finish 
 
2.0
Overall 
 
3.0
Reviewed by Amber Peter March 26, 2013
Last updated: March 26, 2013
Top 10 Reviewer  -   View all my reviews (58)

I don't get it.

Appearance: Extra green, without being too dark.

Louche: When louched it's a pretty light green, but it's extremely milky and thick.

Aroma: Hella minty, with a bit of a still scent, and a somewhat masked smell that's redolent of rubber.

Flavor/Mouthfeel: Light and creamy in texture, but really, really minty, and something vegetal is coming through on the flavor that I don't particularly like. It ends up fairly bitter in the end.

Finish: The finish is very fuzzy in the mouth and there's some alcohol heat that takes a long time to fade.

Overall: There are some quality aspects of this absinthe, but there are also some pretty disappointing flaws. Maybe this used to be passable in an absinthe, but there's so many better options out there, especially from Pernot.

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Appearance: A light grassy green that is clear and bright. Hardly any of the usual yellow tone at all. Nice and clear with no sediment.

Louche: A nearly opaque and milky green. Hardly any nuance at all.

Aroma: Smells like a distillery. There is a strong mint aroma that dominates the scent. If you search behind the mask of mint and still, there appear to be some citrus and anise notes as well.

Flavor: A big ol' mint bomb that has a thick and vegetal texture. Once again you have to search for other notes. Unbalanced and I regret to say, tailsy.

Finish: A mint and citrus combo that reminds me of mouthwash. Lasts a decently long time but not necessarily in a good way.

Overall: The vegetal and mint combo trample over anything else. This is surprising considering that the same distillery produces some extremely good absinthes. Maybe when it was launched it was a decent offering but now many absinthes and even the distiller have surpassed this one.
Overall rating 
 
2.7
Appearance 
 
3.5
Louche 
 
3.0
Aroma 
 
3.0
Flavor / Mouthfeel 
 
2.0
Finish 
 
2.0
Overall 
 
2.5
Reviewed by Evan Camomile March 26, 2013
Top 10 Reviewer  -   View all my reviews (67)

Unexpected

Appearance: A light grassy green that is clear and bright. Hardly any of the usual yellow tone at all. Nice and clear with no sediment.

Louche: A nearly opaque and milky green. Hardly any nuance at all.

Aroma: Smells like a distillery. There is a strong mint aroma that dominates the scent. If you search behind the mask of mint and still, there appear to be some citrus and anise notes as well.

Flavor: A big ol' mint bomb that has a thick and vegetal texture. Once again you have to search for other notes. Unbalanced and I regret to say, tailsy.

Finish: A mint and citrus combo that reminds me of mouthwash. Lasts a decently long time but not necessarily in a good way.

Overall: The vegetal and mint combo trample over anything else. This is surprising considering that the same distillery produces some extremely good absinthes. Maybe when it was launched it was a decent offering but now many absinthes and even the distiller have surpassed this one.

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with & without sugar - 2.5:1 water ratio

Appearance: Very nice, clear light green that shines like a gemstone. I only wish it was a tiny shade darker - then it would have gotten a perfect score.

Louche: It took a little while to build, which is good, but after that things went rather quickly. There is a lack of "trails."

Aroma: Un-louched - very sweet flavor that initially reminds me of anisette toast cookies. There is a classic absinthe profile that has a bit of that 'alpine freshness' I love. For the first time, I would say I sense a vegetal quality to the nose both from the louched glass that is not particularly pleasant (without sugar added).

Taste: My first impression was that I found this absinthe to be extremely sweet without sugar, and way over the top with it, but later, probably due to the slightly vegetal nose, I went back to the sugar. I don't have a whole lot to say here - It's balanced, and there is no strong alcohol bite. It has the taste I expect from high quality absinthe, but with no interesting complexities or special aspects, save for a dash of spiciness.

Finish: Very thin mouth feel - does not coat the mouth. Light pull on the tongue. The taste dies rather quickly and doesn't bring anything new to the table.

Overall: I was disappointed in this because at the time of purchase it seemed to be held in very high regard. I would say it is not at all on the level of the Doubs Mystique or Roquette offered by the distillery, which are both far more enjoyable to me. I don't want to make it sound like this absinthe is bad in any way, I just wasn't blown away. It is a top shelf absinthe... I guess I am spoiled by things like Marteau and also need to sense some sort of deep complexity in the absinthe to really score it high.
Overall rating 
 
3.5
Appearance 
 
4.5
Louche 
 
3.0
Aroma 
 
3.5
Flavor / Mouthfeel 
 
4.0
Finish 
 
2.0
Overall 
 
3.5
Reviewed by Neorebel January 27, 2013
Last updated: January 27, 2013
Top 500 Reviewer  -   View all my reviews (11)

Good, but lacking some depth

with & without sugar - 2.5:1 water ratio

Appearance: Very nice, clear light green that shines like a gemstone. I only wish it was a tiny shade darker - then it would have gotten a perfect score.

Louche: It took a little while to build, which is good, but after that things went rather quickly. There is a lack of "trails."

Aroma: Un-louched - very sweet flavor that initially reminds me of anisette toast cookies. There is a classic absinthe profile that has a bit of that 'alpine freshness' I love. For the first time, I would say I sense a vegetal quality to the nose both from the louched glass that is not particularly pleasant (without sugar added).

Taste: My first impression was that I found this absinthe to be extremely sweet without sugar, and way over the top with it, but later, probably due to the slightly vegetal nose, I went back to the sugar. I don't have a whole lot to say here - It's balanced, and there is no strong alcohol bite. It has the taste I expect from high quality absinthe, but with no interesting complexities or special aspects, save for a dash of spiciness.

Finish: Very thin mouth feel - does not coat the mouth. Light pull on the tongue. The taste dies rather quickly and doesn't bring anything new to the table.

Overall: I was disappointed in this because at the time of purchase it seemed to be held in very high regard. I would say it is not at all on the level of the Doubs Mystique or Roquette offered by the distillery, which are both far more enjoyable to me. I don't want to make it sound like this absinthe is bad in any way, I just wasn't blown away. It is a top shelf absinthe... I guess I am spoiled by things like Marteau and also need to sense some sort of deep complexity in the absinthe to really score it high.

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The appearance is exactly what I think an absinthe should be. Beautiful to look at and very herby. The louche from my carafe is magical to watch like whisps of smoke and then turns into a fog bank. Aroma, so this is Pontarlier wormwood? You can sure tell a difference. Very organic and earthy. The flavor is stout and deliciously fruity and a little bitter too. Just like I like it. Seems to develop and open up as it warms. Finish lasts a good bit and makes my mouth crave that next sip while savoring the last one. Overall this is my favorite absinthe of the dozen I've had and my only one from the Emile Pernot family so far but will not be my last. For me it goes best at a 4 to 1 ratio and needs no sugar.
Overall rating 
 
4.3
Appearance 
 
4.0
Louche 
 
4.0
Aroma 
 
4.5
Flavor / Mouthfeel 
 
4.5
Finish 
 
4.0
Overall 
 
4.5
Reviewed by Songcatcher June 07, 2012
Last updated: June 07, 2012
Top 100 Reviewer  -   View all my reviews (9)

Pontarlier Perfectly

The appearance is exactly what I think an absinthe should be. Beautiful to look at and very herby. The louche from my carafe is magical to watch like whisps of smoke and then turns into a fog bank. Aroma, so this is Pontarlier wormwood? You can sure tell a difference. Very organic and earthy. The flavor is stout and deliciously fruity and a little bitter too. Just like I like it. Seems to develop and open up as it warms. Finish lasts a good bit and makes my mouth crave that next sip while savoring the last one. Overall this is my favorite absinthe of the dozen I've had and my only one from the Emile Pernot family so far but will not be my last. For me it goes best at a 4 to 1 ratio and needs no sugar.

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Color: Very attractive peridot. Deep and inviting with perfect clarity.

Louche: Thick billowing trails starting from the top of the glass. A very bright green meniscus that ends at around 3/1 water ratio. A cross between jade and lime juice when fully louched. I haven’t seen it yet in natural sunlight however.

Aroma: Very powerful sweet/fruity anise which is followed by an earthy undertone of wormwood. Every now and then I smell a slight funk but this is tough to distinguish from the earthy characters. I also get hints of dill in this absinthe.

Flavor: Assertive wormwood wrapped in more ‘Juicy Fruit’ anise. I again detect a decent dill presence in the flavor with some fennel. Towards the end the flavor is earthier. I like how the earthiness and fruitiness come and go; they intertwine well and make for an interesting drink

Finish: Candy-like anise once more. Very interesting that it includes fennel as well. It doesn’t last long enough which is surprising for such a robust flavored absinthe.

Overall: I think this is a very good absinthe. It has all of the characteristics of a quality verte. It’s a pretty good value for folks looking to enjoy a traditional verte.

I enjoyed this best with a 3.5 to 1 water ratio and a sugar cube.
Overall rating 
 
4.3
Appearance 
 
5.0
Louche 
 
5.0
Aroma 
 
4.0
Flavor / Mouthfeel 
 
4.0
Finish 
 
4.0
Overall 
 
4.0
Reviewed by accountant February 04, 2010
Top 50 Reviewer  -   View all my reviews (25)

Solid, better than average Verte

Color: Very attractive peridot. Deep and inviting with perfect clarity.

Louche: Thick billowing trails starting from the top of the glass. A very bright green meniscus that ends at around 3/1 water ratio. A cross between jade and lime juice when fully louched. I haven’t seen it yet in natural sunlight however.

Aroma: Very powerful sweet/fruity anise which is followed by an earthy undertone of wormwood. Every now and then I smell a slight funk but this is tough to distinguish from the earthy characters. I also get hints of dill in this absinthe.

Flavor: Assertive wormwood wrapped in more ‘Juicy Fruit’ anise. I again detect a decent dill presence in the flavor with some fennel. Towards the end the flavor is earthier. I like how the earthiness and fruitiness come and go; they intertwine well and make for an interesting drink

Finish: Candy-like anise once more. Very interesting that it includes fennel as well. It doesn’t last long enough which is surprising for such a robust flavored absinthe.

Overall: I think this is a very good absinthe. It has all of the characteristics of a quality verte. It’s a pretty good value for folks looking to enjoy a traditional verte.

I enjoyed this best with a 3.5 to 1 water ratio and a sugar cube.

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*I revisited this after many other brands, and have modified the review.

Served at 3:1, 4:1 and 5:1 and it opens up nicely at the higher ratios.

Color: Lovely sparkling peridot. natural looking. Color after louche is wonderful as well.

Aroma: Nice..anise, wormwood and light spice. It filled the room and made me want to drink it!

Louche: Very nice louche...developing slowly and evenly with clear trails and nice colors. Smoky clouds billowed up, with a clear layer at the top. The thickness of the louche was very nice, not too thin, not too thick.

Flavor: The anise is at the forefront here, wormwood is just a tad behind it. Not a lot of complex elements, which is not a bad thing. Surrounding the trinity is a pleasant light spice, light mint and gentle floral element.

Finish: Clean and quality elements. The Wormwood is more present here. Finish fades to a nice fennel, pepper and citrus.

I'd buy this again and share it with friends as a good affordable absinthe. It is a great intro to French style vertes.
Overall rating 
 
4.1
Appearance 
 
4.0
Louche 
 
4.5
Aroma 
 
4.0
Flavor / Mouthfeel 
 
4.0
Finish 
 
4.0
Overall 
 
4.0
Reviewed by Scott M. January 31, 2010
Last updated: January 05, 2013
Top 10 Reviewer  -   View all my reviews (64)

I like this one

*I revisited this after many other brands, and have modified the review.

Served at 3:1, 4:1 and 5:1 and it opens up nicely at the higher ratios.

Color: Lovely sparkling peridot. natural looking. Color after louche is wonderful as well.

Aroma: Nice..anise, wormwood and light spice. It filled the room and made me want to drink it!

Louche: Very nice louche...developing slowly and evenly with clear trails and nice colors. Smoky clouds billowed up, with a clear layer at the top. The thickness of the louche was very nice, not too thin, not too thick.

Flavor: The anise is at the forefront here, wormwood is just a tad behind it. Not a lot of complex elements, which is not a bad thing. Surrounding the trinity is a pleasant light spice, light mint and gentle floral element.

Finish: Clean and quality elements. The Wormwood is more present here. Finish fades to a nice fennel, pepper and citrus.

I'd buy this again and share it with friends as a good affordable absinthe. It is a great intro to French style vertes.

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The color is a pale emerald green. The louche a little thin, but still clouds to a really nice billow. Aroma before water is anise, with a tinge of wormwood, and herbal. After louche the aroma blossoms into a wormwood, anise perfume that has a mint/fruit spice quality. The taste is sweet, clear and precise. Herbal with wormwood, mint and spice, with a velvety mouth feel. The finish is of mint, wormwood and spice. A very drinkable absinthe.
Overall rating 
 
3.7
Appearance 
 
4.0
Louche 
 
4.0
Aroma 
 
3.0
Flavor / Mouthfeel 
 
4.0
Finish 
 
3.0
Overall 
 
4.0
Reviewed by oglala56 November 22, 2009
Top 50 Reviewer  -   View all my reviews (17)

Beau Vieux Pontarlier

The color is a pale emerald green. The louche a little thin, but still clouds to a really nice billow. Aroma before water is anise, with a tinge of wormwood, and herbal. After louche the aroma blossoms into a wormwood, anise perfume that has a mint/fruit spice quality. The taste is sweet, clear and precise. Herbal with wormwood, mint and spice, with a velvety mouth feel. The finish is of mint, wormwood and spice. A very drinkable absinthe.

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Color: Vieux Pontarlier has a color that is not unattractive, but is too far on the yellow side of the spectrum to qualify as a true peridot. However, after having been opened for a month or two it does age to a more appropriate color.

Louche: The louche was active, with nice, roiling clouds that weren't too thick nor milky. This is one category in which this absinthe truly shined.

Aroma: Upon first opening the bottle a few weeks ago, I found the VP to have a somewhat grassy or spinachy aroma which I found off-putting. This has since mellowed out some, but it is still present before loucheing; after the louche, the smell is far less concentrated and merely average.

Flavor: Some have cited a mintiness in VP, but to my palate it seems like a strong, distinctive wormwood. I'm new to absinthe, and I may be wrong about this, but I simply find it to be heavy on the wormwood and spicy zing. This is one of the few absinthes that I add a full measure of sweetener (1 tsp of agave nectar), at which point the flavor is full and enjoyable. A ratio of 4.5 or 5:1 worked best for me.

Finish: The wormwood leaves its mark on the tongue, with a numbing that lasts a bit longer than it should. The aftertaste is bitter, but not excessively so, although it does remain well after the flavor has gone.

Overall: I'm glad to say that my initial concerns about what the funky aroma may indicate the flavor would be like were proven to be of little concern at all. Vieux Pontarlier is a solid offering that may not rate as highly as some, but is a tasty absinthe that I would not turn down.
Overall rating 
 
3.9
Appearance 
 
4.0
Louche 
 
5.0
Aroma 
 
3.0
Flavor / Mouthfeel 
 
4.0
Finish 
 
3.0
Overall 
 
4.0
Reviewed by jaysthename July 25, 2009
Last updated: August 18, 2009
Top 500 Reviewer  -   View all my reviews (19)

A fine French offering

Color: Vieux Pontarlier has a color that is not unattractive, but is too far on the yellow side of the spectrum to qualify as a true peridot. However, after having been opened for a month or two it does age to a more appropriate color.

Louche: The louche was active, with nice, roiling clouds that weren't too thick nor milky. This is one category in which this absinthe truly shined.

Aroma: Upon first opening the bottle a few weeks ago, I found the VP to have a somewhat grassy or spinachy aroma which I found off-putting. This has since mellowed out some, but it is still present before loucheing; after the louche, the smell is far less concentrated and merely average.

Flavor: Some have cited a mintiness in VP, but to my palate it seems like a strong, distinctive wormwood. I'm new to absinthe, and I may be wrong about this, but I simply find it to be heavy on the wormwood and spicy zing. This is one of the few absinthes that I add a full measure of sweetener (1 tsp of agave nectar), at which point the flavor is full and enjoyable. A ratio of 4.5 or 5:1 worked best for me.

Finish: The wormwood leaves its mark on the tongue, with a numbing that lasts a bit longer than it should. The aftertaste is bitter, but not excessively so, although it does remain well after the flavor has gone.

Overall: I'm glad to say that my initial concerns about what the funky aroma may indicate the flavor would be like were proven to be of little concern at all. Vieux Pontarlier is a solid offering that may not rate as highly as some, but is a tasty absinthe that I would not turn down.

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My bottle has been open since the beginning of January 2009. I did carafe pours for all glasses.

Color – Peridot. It is very pleasing to the eye, even if it is a little pale. 4.5 would be my rating if it were possible, so I chose 4 because I’d love that tiny bump of color.

Louche: A little fast with a thin stream from a carafe, and no “billows” that I could see. However, it is certainly attractive, and the separation is clear down to the last millimeter.

Aroma: I really like the aroma this has, both louched and un-. There is a fruity quality I really enjoy—can anise smell this fruit-like?—and there’s a pleasant kick from the wormwood. There are other scents in the mix, but they seem more in the background.

Flavor: The wormwood is front and center to my palate, with a pinch of spice accompanying it. The anise and fruit notes are at the beginning of the sip, though they are more subtle at this point. A decent amount of creaminess presents itself halfway through or so. The flavor seems unified to me, which I initially read as being “simple”–not a bad simple, just that it went over my head for the first glass or two from the bottle.

Finish: The wormwood and spice are at play the most here, though the finish didn’t last as long as I would have liked.

Overall: The flavor and the pre-louche aroma (a force to be reckoned with) are the inverse of each other, in that the anise and fruit notes present upon opening the bottle give way to the wormwood upon louching and on the palate. Because my only quibbles are a slightly pale color and a short finish, I see this as a solid offering.
Overall rating 
 
3.9
Appearance 
 
4.0
Louche 
 
4.0
Aroma 
 
4.0
Flavor / Mouthfeel 
 
4.0
Finish 
 
3.0
Overall 
 
4.0
Reviewed by scuto April 15, 2009
Top 500 Reviewer  -   View all my reviews (9)

You can’t go wrong with this one

My bottle has been open since the beginning of January 2009. I did carafe pours for all glasses.

Color – Peridot. It is very pleasing to the eye, even if it is a little pale. 4.5 would be my rating if it were possible, so I chose 4 because I’d love that tiny bump of color.

Louche: A little fast with a thin stream from a carafe, and no “billows” that I could see. However, it is certainly attractive, and the separation is clear down to the last millimeter.

Aroma: I really like the aroma this has, both louched and un-. There is a fruity quality I really enjoy—can anise smell this fruit-like?—and there’s a pleasant kick from the wormwood. There are other scents in the mix, but they seem more in the background.

Flavor: The wormwood is front and center to my palate, with a pinch of spice accompanying it. The anise and fruit notes are at the beginning of the sip, though they are more subtle at this point. A decent amount of creaminess presents itself halfway through or so. The flavor seems unified to me, which I initially read as being “simple”–not a bad simple, just that it went over my head for the first glass or two from the bottle.

Finish: The wormwood and spice are at play the most here, though the finish didn’t last as long as I would have liked.

Overall: The flavor and the pre-louche aroma (a force to be reckoned with) are the inverse of each other, in that the anise and fruit notes present upon opening the bottle give way to the wormwood upon louching and on the palate. Because my only quibbles are a slightly pale color and a short finish, I see this as a solid offering.

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The colour is too pale, although there were pics of a batches where it was quite nice green.

Louche is alright. However, the aroma is very flat, if it was the absinthe to surpass Lucid, it did, as they are both relatively one-dimensional. An everyday absinthe, maybe, but rather in the vein of the finest absinthes inferieures of the yore. Misplaced wormwood, wet anise profile, terribly stinking wrongly-processed alcohol, no factual aging or mellowing.

Flavour is better as wormwood note, if still too discrete, is quite pleasant.

Finish is short, tailsy and typically for the style it "thrives"-absinthe inferieure.

Overall, there are much better absinthes in the US to be savoured; there are absolutely much better absinthes in Europe as well.



Overall rating 
 
2.7
Appearance 
 
1.0
Louche 
 
5.0
Aroma 
 
2.0
Flavor / Mouthfeel 
 
3.0
Finish 
 
2.0
Overall 
 
3.0
Reviewed by absinthist March 14, 2009
Last updated: December 20, 2010
Top 10 Reviewer  -   View all my reviews (60)

Not that Vieux, rather Jeune

The colour is too pale, although there were pics of a batches where it was quite nice green.

Louche is alright. However, the aroma is very flat, if it was the absinthe to surpass Lucid, it did, as they are both relatively one-dimensional. An everyday absinthe, maybe, but rather in the vein of the finest absinthes inferieures of the yore. Misplaced wormwood, wet anise profile, terribly stinking wrongly-processed alcohol, no factual aging or mellowing.

Flavour is better as wormwood note, if still too discrete, is quite pleasant.

Finish is short, tailsy and typically for the style it "thrives"-absinthe inferieure.

Overall, there are much better absinthes in the US to be savoured; there are absolutely much better absinthes in Europe as well.



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This first taste glass of Vieux Pontarlier was prepared with ice cold water, no sugar, and very slowly dripped.

Aroma pre-louche: I think it is important to experience a new absinthe's aroma upon opening the bottle and give a very first impression. Upon opening the bottle a familiar and expected wormwood-heavy aroma was omnipresent. It smells enticing. Upon pouring, the heavy wormwood aroma fades and takes a back seat to something more complex. Alcohol is, however, very apparent.

Color:

The color is by far the nicest I've personally experienced. It is crystal clear with no sediment, and represents for me a perfect coloration. It looks the most natural, and most absinthe-y I have seen yet.

Louche:

For me one of the most important characteristics. IT began as magnificent oily trails that seemed to conjure up the jade opalescence from somewhere unseen within. A bit quick to erupt, the full louche began almost after the blink of an eye and filled all but the top layer until around 2.5 it was complete. It's fantastic green color set in nicely and never move towards being too much white. It was so pretty at the start that I wish it lasted longer. The aroma was like cold candy canes, and while pleasant was not very powerful. Stopping the drip at around 3 or 3.5-1 I quickly stirred. Utterly gorgeous.

Flavor:

A fantastically blended flavor. Wormwood--so far as I believe it to be--jumps right onto your tongue and riding quickly in tow is a smooth mix of fennel and anise. I have no qualms about saying that, on instant reaction, this is the most fantastic thing I've ever tasted. It blends all the qualities of my previous absinthes and gives me a stern, yet enjoyable lesson in what absinthe should taste like. The texture on my tongue is of perfect creaminess. No biting alcohol. Although I do miss the nice numbness I've come to expect from others.

Finish:

The finish is quick and clean, almost as if the flavor completely vanishes leaving only a refreshing afterthought. It is naturally sweet in a way that sugar could ruin it. I would have liked the flavor to linger a bit longer, perhaps with a nice numb reminder on the tip of my tongue.

Overall:

This is delicious. It seems to be a perfect blend of all dominant absinthe flavors, and yet in some way I am almost missing having one jump out over another. I think that perhaps a lesser water ration might benefit this absinthe as it might allow for a more sharp bite to the tongue. Of course, this could just mean that it really is a very high quality absinthe with a particularly refined character. Overall, the best I've had so far--it doesn't cry out for sugar--and an absinthe that I have no doubt will replace at least one of my current mainstays.

*EDIT* So I tried one with sugar and, exposing my complete absinthe naivete, it isn't bad at all. The wormwood comes out a bit more, but the anise vanishes and you only get a hint of fennel. Not as catastrophic as I thought. I'm a bit confused now.
Overall rating 
 
4.3
Appearance 
 
5.0
Louche 
 
4.0
Aroma 
 
3.0
Flavor / Mouthfeel 
 
5.0
Finish 
 
3.0
Overall 
 
5.0
Reviewed by pt447 February 18, 2009
Last updated: February 18, 2009
Top 500 Reviewer  -   View all my reviews (12)

My first supposedly high quality absinthe

This first taste glass of Vieux Pontarlier was prepared with ice cold water, no sugar, and very slowly dripped.

Aroma pre-louche: I think it is important to experience a new absinthe's aroma upon opening the bottle and give a very first impression. Upon opening the bottle a familiar and expected wormwood-heavy aroma was omnipresent. It smells enticing. Upon pouring, the heavy wormwood aroma fades and takes a back seat to something more complex. Alcohol is, however, very apparent.

Color:

The color is by far the nicest I've personally experienced. It is crystal clear with no sediment, and represents for me a perfect coloration. It looks the most natural, and most absinthe-y I have seen yet.

Louche:

For me one of the most important characteristics. IT began as magnificent oily trails that seemed to conjure up the jade opalescence from somewhere unseen within. A bit quick to erupt, the full louche began almost after the blink of an eye and filled all but the top layer until around 2.5 it was complete. It's fantastic green color set in nicely and never move towards being too much white. It was so pretty at the start that I wish it lasted longer. The aroma was like cold candy canes, and while pleasant was not very powerful. Stopping the drip at around 3 or 3.5-1 I quickly stirred. Utterly gorgeous.

Flavor:

A fantastically blended flavor. Wormwood--so far as I believe it to be--jumps right onto your tongue and riding quickly in tow is a smooth mix of fennel and anise. I have no qualms about saying that, on instant reaction, this is the most fantastic thing I've ever tasted. It blends all the qualities of my previous absinthes and gives me a stern, yet enjoyable lesson in what absinthe should taste like. The texture on my tongue is of perfect creaminess. No biting alcohol. Although I do miss the nice numbness I've come to expect from others.

Finish:

The finish is quick and clean, almost as if the flavor completely vanishes leaving only a refreshing afterthought. It is naturally sweet in a way that sugar could ruin it. I would have liked the flavor to linger a bit longer, perhaps with a nice numb reminder on the tip of my tongue.

Overall:

This is delicious. It seems to be a perfect blend of all dominant absinthe flavors, and yet in some way I am almost missing having one jump out over another. I think that perhaps a lesser water ration might benefit this absinthe as it might allow for a more sharp bite to the tongue. Of course, this could just mean that it really is a very high quality absinthe with a particularly refined character. Overall, the best I've had so far--it doesn't cry out for sugar--and an absinthe that I have no doubt will replace at least one of my current mainstays.

*EDIT* So I tried one with sugar and, exposing my complete absinthe naivete, it isn't bad at all. The wormwood comes out a bit more, but the anise vanishes and you only get a hint of fennel. Not as catastrophic as I thought. I'm a bit confused now.

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The color in the glass is amazingly bright and clear, having a gem-like quality. It louches up nicely, keeping a tinge of green that is quite attractive. The louche builds from the bottom, with a layer of green at the top of the glass. Though it's thick enough at 2:1, I usually use a 3.5 or 4:1 ratio to open it up even more, and to provide an additional few sips per glass. It doesn't fall apart at higher water:dose ratios, either. I've had it unsugared, but I prefer it with because I think it thickens up the mouthfeel in a very positive way, without being too cloying.

The aroma is delightful, sweetness accompanied by a bit of wormwood and a detectable anise/fennel. The first sip gives a butterscotch richness, with the middle and back of the tongue sensing the slight bitter & dryness of wormwood. The anise flavor is present, if light. The finish is refreshingly cool, minty and bitter at the same time. A slight amount of tongue-drying accompanies the finish, but not as much as in some other wormwood-forward absinthes.

I love this product. At the price ($65 per bottle), it's an amazing value, cheap enough to be a daily drinker. I keep one bottle open and one in reserve because I know I'm going to be going back day in and day out.
Overall rating 
 
4.4
Appearance 
 
5.0
Louche 
 
4.0
Aroma 
 
4.0
Flavor / Mouthfeel 
 
4.0
Finish 
 
4.0
Overall 
 
5.0
Reviewed by khiddy February 09, 2009
Top 50 Reviewer  -   View all my reviews (11)

A favorite daily drinker

The color in the glass is amazingly bright and clear, having a gem-like quality. It louches up nicely, keeping a tinge of green that is quite attractive. The louche builds from the bottom, with a layer of green at the top of the glass. Though it's thick enough at 2:1, I usually use a 3.5 or 4:1 ratio to open it up even more, and to provide an additional few sips per glass. It doesn't fall apart at higher water:dose ratios, either. I've had it unsugared, but I prefer it with because I think it thickens up the mouthfeel in a very positive way, without being too cloying.

The aroma is delightful, sweetness accompanied by a bit of wormwood and a detectable anise/fennel. The first sip gives a butterscotch richness, with the middle and back of the tongue sensing the slight bitter & dryness of wormwood. The anise flavor is present, if light. The finish is refreshingly cool, minty and bitter at the same time. A slight amount of tongue-drying accompanies the finish, but not as much as in some other wormwood-forward absinthes.

I love this product. At the price ($65 per bottle), it's an amazing value, cheap enough to be a daily drinker. I keep one bottle open and one in reserve because I know I'm going to be going back day in and day out.

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Color:

Very nice clear mid-green tint, neither olive nor atomic. Stays light peridot tinted even after water. Essentially perfect, the precise color a verte should be.

Louche:

Couldn't really be much better I think, using very cold water and getting to my usual dilution of 4:1 faster than I like (anticipation and all ya know), it formed a nice clear layer at the top that lingered and then vanished. I didn't notice the usual "oily trails" business like I usually see though, but that may have been because I was simply rushing it. Once fully louched it's maybe, just maybe a tad on the thin side, but I'm picking nits here.

Aroma:

Before water, very much green anise, with just a hint of wormwood and herbs. No trace of grass or other overly herbaceous things jumping out at you. After water, much more wormwood, much less anise. Minty and sharp, with just a tiny bit of Christmas spice in the background.

Flavor:

No sugar tonight in my absinthe. Not to start anyway. The result is wormwood and mint, with a very crisp refreshing aftertaste. A rounded fruitiness makes itself known as well. This makes it not go well with chocolate (since I don't like mint and chocolate), but did help with the roast for dinner, although the flavor was perhaps not up to the top competition in all respects, it is very clear, very clean, and present.

Finish:

Moderately bitter but smooth, the finish is not so much aromatic as it is cooling. Not numbing though, with less of that than I like, but cooling there is plenty of.

Overall:

Taken as the sum of the parts, I like this absinthe, but only just. Although this bottling is said to be about 6 months old, I wish the flavor had just a little bit more complexity to it, and the mint notes were toned down slightly. Maybe with time. But, what it lacks perhaps in richness, it makes up for in its refreshing qualities and ability to hold its own with other foods.
Overall rating 
 
3.8
Appearance 
 
5.0
Louche 
 
4.0
Aroma 
 
3.0
Flavor / Mouthfeel 
 
3.0
Finish 
 
4.0
Overall 
 
4.0
Reviewed by speedle December 23, 2008
Last updated: December 23, 2008
Top 50 Reviewer  -   View all my reviews (9)

A top qualty offering all around.

Color:

Very nice clear mid-green tint, neither olive nor atomic. Stays light peridot tinted even after water. Essentially perfect, the precise color a verte should be.

Louche:

Couldn't really be much better I think, using very cold water and getting to my usual dilution of 4:1 faster than I like (anticipation and all ya know), it formed a nice clear layer at the top that lingered and then vanished. I didn't notice the usual "oily trails" business like I usually see though, but that may have been because I was simply rushing it. Once fully louched it's maybe, just maybe a tad on the thin side, but I'm picking nits here.

Aroma:

Before water, very much green anise, with just a hint of wormwood and herbs. No trace of grass or other overly herbaceous things jumping out at you. After water, much more wormwood, much less anise. Minty and sharp, with just a tiny bit of Christmas spice in the background.

Flavor:

No sugar tonight in my absinthe. Not to start anyway. The result is wormwood and mint, with a very crisp refreshing aftertaste. A rounded fruitiness makes itself known as well. This makes it not go well with chocolate (since I don't like mint and chocolate), but did help with the roast for dinner, although the flavor was perhaps not up to the top competition in all respects, it is very clear, very clean, and present.

Finish:

Moderately bitter but smooth, the finish is not so much aromatic as it is cooling. Not numbing though, with less of that than I like, but cooling there is plenty of.

Overall:

Taken as the sum of the parts, I like this absinthe, but only just. Although this bottling is said to be about 6 months old, I wish the flavor had just a little bit more complexity to it, and the mint notes were toned down slightly. Maybe with time. But, what it lacks perhaps in richness, it makes up for in its refreshing qualities and ability to hold its own with other foods.

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I'm giving this absinthe marks. Visually, it's just about perfect, starting as a lovely and bright, peridot green and louching to an equally attractive, opalescent jade. The louche process itself seems just right, starting with heavy, rope-like "oil trails" and ending with the expected vanishing ring of green. I found the aroma before water to be intensely herbal, but it mellows as the water is added, and the anise comes to the forefront. The flavor is herbal, complex, and very interesting, with a soft and lingering bitterness that I found very pleasing; the finish is less perfect than the initial flavor but still very good. Overall, I would say this is the one of the better absinthes on the US market I've tried to date, and for the price, it is very hard to beat.
Overall rating 
 
4.5
Appearance 
 
5.0
Louche 
 
5.0
Aroma 
 
4.0
Flavor / Mouthfeel 
 
5.0
Finish 
 
4.0
Overall 
 
4.0
Reviewed by marlow December 19, 2008
Last updated: April 05, 2010
Top 50 Reviewer  -   View all my reviews (36)

Vieux Pontarlier - high quality and affordable.

I'm giving this absinthe marks. Visually, it's just about perfect, starting as a lovely and bright, peridot green and louching to an equally attractive, opalescent jade. The louche process itself seems just right, starting with heavy, rope-like "oil trails" and ending with the expected vanishing ring of green. I found the aroma before water to be intensely herbal, but it mellows as the water is added, and the anise comes to the forefront. The flavor is herbal, complex, and very interesting, with a soft and lingering bitterness that I found very pleasing; the finish is less perfect than the initial flavor but still very good. Overall, I would say this is the one of the better absinthes on the US market I've tried to date, and for the price, it is very hard to beat.

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