Vieux Pontarlier

Vieux Pontarlier

 
4.1 (4)
 
3.8 (17)
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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 10 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.

Was this review helpful to you? 
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 (171)

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 View all user reviews

Average user rating from: 17 user(s)

Overall rating 
 
3.8
Appearance 
 
4.1  (17)
Louche 
 
4.1  (17)
Aroma 
 
3.4  (17)
Flavor / Mouthfeel 
 
3.7  (17)
Finish 
 
3.2  (17)
Overall 
 
3.8  (17)
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Vieux Pontarlier seems like it could have been great absinthe that hits all the right notes and has a pleasant flavor. But there is a hint of an odor and flavor that I can only describe as a vegetal flavor mixed with “burnt rubber”. This being one of my First bottles I had to power through it and drank the whole thing, but I’ve later found out that this flavor is that of the “tails”.

For newcomers this is the bit of fluid at the end of the distillation, the “tail”. It shouldn’t be collected with the body of the distillation that is to be bottled, as it gives the Absinthe these strong vegetal flavors. Artichokes are the common descriptor used when trying to explain what the tails taste like.
Overall rating 
 
3.2
Appearance 
 
4.0
Louche 
 
4.0
Aroma 
 
3.0
Flavor / Mouthfeel 
 
3.0
Finish 
 
3.0
Overall 
 
2.5
Reviewed by drdaniel5 April 16, 2015
Top 50 Reviewer  -   View all my reviews (7)

Missed opportunity

Vieux Pontarlier seems like it could have been great absinthe that hits all the right notes and has a pleasant flavor. But there is a hint of an odor and flavor that I can only describe as a vegetal flavor mixed with “burnt rubber”. This being one of my First bottles I had to power through it and drank the whole thing, but I’ve later found out that this flavor is that of the “tails”.

For newcomers this is the bit of fluid at the end of the distillation, the “tail”. It shouldn’t be collected with the body of the distillation that is to be bottled, as it gives the Absinthe these strong vegetal flavors. Artichokes are the common descriptor used when trying to explain what the tails taste like.

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This is definitely my favorite absinthe to date out of the 8 absinthes I have tried. It has everything I expect out of an absinthe without being overwhelming, and the effect from drinking it is the most "absinthe" type of experience I have had. It definitely gives a different feel from any other type of alcohol. As cliche as it may sound, it always gives me extremely vivid dreams as well.

Appearance:
Light green, but nothing special. Bottle looks a more vintage, but nothing special.

Louche:
Good louche, turns a pale whitish green. Stays thin looking, but you can definitely see the effect as you dilute.

Aroma:
Very good minty smell. Not too much anise, or any other smell, but a nice blend. Some may not appreciate the mellowness of it, but the characteristic notes are there.

Flavor:
This absinthe does a great job of blending the flavors without any being too pronounced. If you are used to a strong anise taste, you wont find it here. Minty flavor, but not overwhelming. Perfect for my taste.

Finish:
Leaves a nice feeling, thin, refreshing, and ready for another sip. No strong alcohol or anise aftertaste.

Overall:
I love this product. The only thing that really stands out to me is the different feeling from drinking it. This may sound like a negative, but it really does not suffer in any category. Everything is a perfect blend for a traditional absinthe. Smooth all the way through with an intriguing feeling afterwards.
Overall rating 
 
4.5
Appearance 
 
3.0
Louche 
 
4.0
Aroma 
 
5.0
Flavor / Mouthfeel 
 
5.0
Finish 
 
5.0
Overall 
 
5.0
Reviewed by DThompson December 31, 2014
Top 100 Reviewer  -   View all my reviews (3)

My favorite

This is definitely my favorite absinthe to date out of the 8 absinthes I have tried. It has everything I expect out of an absinthe without being overwhelming, and the effect from drinking it is the most "absinthe" type of experience I have had. It definitely gives a different feel from any other type of alcohol. As cliche as it may sound, it always gives me extremely vivid dreams as well.

Appearance:
Light green, but nothing special. Bottle looks a more vintage, but nothing special.

Louche:
Good louche, turns a pale whitish green. Stays thin looking, but you can definitely see the effect as you dilute.

Aroma:
Very good minty smell. Not too much anise, or any other smell, but a nice blend. Some may not appreciate the mellowness of it, but the characteristic notes are there.

Flavor:
This absinthe does a great job of blending the flavors without any being too pronounced. If you are used to a strong anise taste, you wont find it here. Minty flavor, but not overwhelming. Perfect for my taste.

Finish:
Leaves a nice feeling, thin, refreshing, and ready for another sip. No strong alcohol or anise aftertaste.

Overall:
I love this product. The only thing that really stands out to me is the different feeling from drinking it. This may sound like a negative, but it really does not suffer in any category. Everything is a perfect blend for a traditional absinthe. Smooth all the way through with an intriguing feeling afterwards.

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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 10 Reviewer  -   View all my reviews (45)

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 (70)

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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