Reviews written by Scott M.

64 results - showing 1 - 25
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Traditional Absinthe
Reviewed by Scott M.     August 16, 2013
Overall rating 
 
2.2
Appearance 
 
3.0
Louche 
 
2.0
Aroma 
 
2.0
Flavor / Mouthfeel 
 
2.0
Finish 
 
2.0
Overall 
 
2.0

Sadly, I didn't enjoy this.

I enjoyed the original Obsello quite a bit, and was really looking forward to this new version, especially at its great price. To keep things simple, it just is not up to par with the many decent and correct absinthes available. I found the aroma to be overwhelmed by the rum base, as well as the flavor. It simply is out of balance, and lacks the fundamental requirements to be recognizable as absinthe... At least one that I'm willing to drink. The louche is barely visible, and trust me, I worked at it, with every scenario I could muster up. None of the herbals or floral elements in absinthe that I love were present. Yes, in the background, I could detect them, but the rum base so tragically smothers them, that I could not finish any of the 4 glasses I tried over the 2 months of wanting to find it had mellowed, opened, or evolved in the bottle. I know many in the absinthe world that feel the same way, who have not spoken up in public, as the distiller is a great guy. I felt it was only fair however, to step forward, in support. I'm hoping they will dial down the base several notches, reconsider the rum, by not using it in the future, and bringing the anise and wormwood to the front, where they belong. I also detected a strong pine-like element... It tastes more like cedar perhaps. It comes off to me as a wood, not herbs. Strange. In a nutshell, It simply is too "left field" for me.

Traditional Absinthe
Reviewed by Scott M.     July 19, 2013
Last updated: July 19, 2013
Overall rating 
 
4.2
Appearance 
 
4.0
Louche 
 
4.0
Aroma 
 
4.5
Flavor / Mouthfeel 
 
4.5
Finish 
 
4.0
Overall 
 
4.0

A nice twist to a great go-to absinthe

I've always enjoyed Enigma, and this barrel-aged version is smoother, and more refined than its sister, which I often enjoy as a casual "go-to." The color neat, is a toned down light olive, that translates into a pretty color when louched. The aroma still has the unmistakable Devoille wine base, and a promise of a classic French absinthe. Neat, the aroma is rich and warm, with a simply delicious anise calling to you. As water is added, as with regular Enigma, the louche develops fairly quickly. It is a thick, luxurious louche, which I love. Don't be shy about water, this stuff not only can handle it, but if softens, and improves greatly at higher dilutions. The wine base that many find overpowering in Enigma starts to soften at 4:1, and for me shines at 5:1, where all the favors, nuances, and aromas suddenly begin to evoke a vintage absinthe. At this dilution, the thick louche thins enough to have a nice glow. The mouthfeel is just thick enough to have substance without being heavy...very nice. This is simply not an absinthe to drink at 3:1, and most who drink it this way will likely not enjoy it as much! It's flavor is complex and powerful, with a good balance of the elements. It is sweet to begin with; I would not even consider using sugar with this absinthe. The finish is interesting and satisfying, with a nice pull and build of layers. I enjoy the finish more at lower dilutions, where it has more tingle and sparkle, but then I feel the experience of drinking it suffers. I liked it quite a bit, and ordered two bottles. It's a wonderful opportunity to order both a standard, and barrel-aged version, as a side by side tasting experience. This same distiller makes la Coquette in standard and barrel-aged versions, and I found, as with the Enigma, the same rounding, softening, and depth was added to the barrel-aged version.

Traditional Absinthe
Reviewed by Scott M.     January 09, 2013
Overall rating 
 
4.3
Appearance 
 
4.0
Louche 
 
4.0
Aroma 
 
4.5
Flavor / Mouthfeel 
 
4.5
Finish 
 
4.0
Overall 
 
4.5

A classic La Bleue

I love this la bleue, as it is simply a pure a classic example of what a Swiss la bleue is supposed to be. I had a glass in 2010 from a different bottle, but this bottle from 2012 is sublime... perhaps it's just that my palate has changed, or it is from a different batch. (We all know that small-batch artisanal distillers have variations from batch to batch). I've compared this to all the other blanches I own, and it is simply put, the purest example of a delicate and delicious wormwood I've tasted in a blanche. There is a softness and clean edge to this, that is free of alcohol and any out of balance elements. Yes, there are la bleues out there (even from this maker) with more character and elements...Sevil for instance, but the purity in concept of this blanche is wonderful. The aroma is crisp and "alpine meadow," the flavor is clean and precise, and the finish is just strong enough to blend with the aroma and flavor in a correct manner, without betraying the gentle spirit of this absinthe. It builds gently and softly, lingers just long enough, then fades leaving a lasting impression of delicate flowers.

Traditional Absinthe
Reviewed by Scott M.     December 22, 2011
Last updated: December 22, 2011
Overall rating 
 
4.3
Appearance 
 
5.0
Louche 
 
4.0
Aroma 
 
5.0
Flavor / Mouthfeel 
 
4.0
Finish 
 
4.0
Overall 
 
4.0

A classic, solid absinthe from Pernot

Authentique's color is a lovely, clear and vibrant medium green, with very nice highlights. When louched, its color is just right, and is dense enough not to be considered too thin by my standards. It louches evenly and slowly with nice layering.

Its aroma is its strongest asset...delicious, rich, and promising. Pernot's classic and easily recognizable hand is clear in the scent, but it is more balanced with anise and fennel than its big brother la Berthe de Joux, and has a more traditional personality than Perroquet. It fills the room with the aroma of a distillery as it louches. Very nice. One of my bottles broke in my hand as I unpacked it from the box, its contents soaking into my office carpet. The aroma filled the office for nearly a week, even after cleaning the carpet. It made me feel like I was back in the distillery, as I had been 3 weeks before! They replaced the bottle quickly, no questions asked. It was a nice reminder of my trip, and many clients asked "what's that great smell?"

The flavor might just be the most balanced all-around blend of the trinity Pernod has produced; the Pontarlier wormwood is distinct, but the anise is right up there in a nice balance, as is the fennel. It is warm, classic, correct, and has just enough floral elements to have depth without being overwhelming.

The finish builds nicely and lingers just right, with a rich enough mouth-feel to not be watery, or too heavy. All the elements in the aroma and flavor present themselves step by step in the finish, and it fades off with a nice mild tingle.

I prefer it at 4:1, where the alcohol is less present than at 3:1, which in my opinion, is underwatered for this absinthe. It may be Pernot's best all-around daily drinking absinthe yet, as it walks the balance line nicely while still highlighting their tasty wormwood.

Retired Brands
Reviewed by Scott M.     December 04, 2011
Last updated: December 05, 2011
Overall rating 
 
4.0
Appearance 
 
4.0
Louche 
 
3.0
Aroma 
 
5.0
Flavor / Mouthfeel 
 
4.0
Finish 
 
4.0
Overall 
 
4.0

Here's your Pontarlier wormwood

I'm always open to an absinthe diverging from tradition if the concept is clear, and if it produces interesting and successful results. This is how I view this absinthe.

It is clearly a tribute to Pontarlier wormwood. As water is added, the wormwood literally jumps out of the glass and announces "I'm here." The louche is a tad on the thin side, but this is to be expected as anise plays a minor role here. As this is the concept, I have no problem with this point. I'd rather have it honest, than to see the maker put a star anise in just to thicken it up. It is a wonderful way to glean a clear understanding of this wormwood, and wormwood in general. Folks new to absinthe struggling to separate one element from another, will never wonder again about detecting wormwood in their absinthe. Aside from being quite good, it is a great educational tool for this reason.

The aroma and flavor are quite wonderful; clean, crisp, and vibrant. There is a slight astringency in the mouth, and the finish lingers forever, with a building citrus of epic proportions. For people who like strong spirits, it has heft, punch and power, yet there are surprisingly delicate elements as well. I tried it both with, and without sugar, and adding a touch of sugar brought out the florals without harming the intentions of this absinthe in any way.

It is a bold blanche, that makes a powerful statement, and a tasty one...if you enjoy wormwood, that is.

Traditional Absinthe
Reviewed by Scott M.     October 20, 2011
Last updated: November 25, 2011
Overall rating 
 
4.2
Appearance 
 
4.0
Louche 
 
5.0
Aroma 
 
4.0
Flavor / Mouthfeel 
 
4.0
Finish 
 
4.0
Overall 
 
4.0

Happy Angel

*Edit: Angelique now has far less wormwood being used in its coloration, hence the huge difference in my impressions on bitterness, and those in the other review. It is a vast improvement according to those who have had both.

I have to say, this is quite delicious. It does require sugar for me, as there is a slight bitterness, but it is not objectionable. It is in fact, a welcomed, powerful presence. Prepared at 4:1 with 1 sugar.

Appearance: a natural pretty light green with a tiny touch of gold. The color and thickness after the louche is very pretty as well.

Louche: Even forming, thick without being milky, and frankly, perfect.

Aroma: Clean, fresh and crisp. Plenty of strong Wormwood, fennel and anise; in fact, it reminded me of being in Claude-Alain's distillery. I opened the bottle, and was taken back to Boveresse. The simple, true absinthe aroma was undeniable, and very welcome.

Flavor: Clean, crisp, balanced, and delicious. There is a slightly bitter and in your face wormwood, but it is quality, and I didn't mind at all. The fennel is sweet and grabs you, and the superb anise is perfectly in the mix. With one sugar, it all came together, with a candy-like personality. I likely would have not enjoyed it as much without the sugar. I did not find an excessive bitterness that overwhelmed in any way.

Finish: Quite nice; complex, tingly, layered. The mouthfeel is rich and velvety without being too thick. A modest but appropriate linger. There is a tiny bit of tongue numbing in the finish, but it is not objectionable.


Traditional Absinthe
Reviewed by Scott M.     September 25, 2011
Last updated: February 19, 2013
Overall rating 
 
4.3
Appearance 
 
4.0
Louche 
 
4.5
Aroma 
 
4.5
Flavor / Mouthfeel 
 
4.5
Finish 
 
4.0
Overall 
 
4.0

A delicate yet assertive butterfly

Edited in Feb 2013, after getting halfway through this newer, second bottle.

Appearance: A clear and natural blend of light emerald with a touch of yellow/amber.

Louche: Quick to develop, thick and cloudy. If you take it really slow, it puts on a nice display of smoke and clouds. The final result is thick and attractive. I love thicker louches, and don't feel they should be penalized if attractive.

Aroma: Very nice. Delicate, fresh and clean. It promises lots of anise, light florals,
and hints of citrus.

Flavor: Anise-forward, and packed with flavor. It is powerful, yet has a dessert-like personality. There is a strong presence of citrus, gentle spices, and the wormwood softly pats you on the back behind the scenes. If you enjoy anise-forward absinthes, you'll likely enjoy this quite a bit. There is a lot going on here, plenty of herbal and floral touches.

Finish: A strong build of spice and lemon. The citrus hangs in there forever. Butterfly's mouthfeel is rich and thick, with a pleasant tingle and pull.

Overall, it is an interesting absinthe. It is sweet, and powerful, yet for me, feminine. I enjoy it most with no sugar at 4:1 or thereabouts. It is due to be imported to the USA soon, as I understand. I am happy about this!

Traditional Absinthe
Reviewed by Scott M.     August 01, 2011
Last updated: January 05, 2013
Overall rating 
 
4.3
Appearance 
 
5.0
Louche 
 
4.0
Aroma 
 
4.0
Flavor / Mouthfeel 
 
4.5
Finish 
 
4.0
Overall 
 
4.0

A very well-made blanche

Enjoyed at 4:1. no sugar

Appearance: This blanche is so perfectly clear and colorless, that when my glass was filled to the dose line, it looked empty. It was clear of any sediment, and was absolutely the pinnacle of how a blanche should look neat.

Louche: A well-formed louche that develops in an even slow build, unlike so many blanches which seem to be in a hurry. The final result was just thick enough to not be opaque, and still had refractive elements, and flashes of copper at the edges.

Aroma: A dry, clean and crisp wormwood-forward aroma. Flirting around its edges is a sweet floral fennel, with a delicate anise behind. Quite nice.

Flavor: The is a tasty and refreshing absinthe; it is crisp and dry, but has a bit more going on than a trad la Bleue; a bit more pepper, spice and depth. The wormwood is exceptional. I enjoy its delicious, light bitterness, and would not be tempted to ruin its character with sugar.

Finish: The finish follows the flavor very well, with a slow build. Pepper, and an almost gin-like dryness. Just as I though it was not going anywhere else, the citrus opened for the final linger.

This is an absinthe worth buying and enjoying. I am quite impressed that these folks grow, harvest, and prep their own wormwood.

Traditional Absinthe
Reviewed by Scott M.     August 01, 2011
Last updated: January 05, 2013
Overall rating 
 
4.4
Appearance 
 
4.5
Louche 
 
4.0
Aroma 
 
4.5
Flavor / Mouthfeel 
 
4.5
Finish 
 
4.5
Overall 
 
4.5

Absolutely Delicious

Sampled over several days at 3.5:1, and 4:1, with and without sugar. This review is written at 3.5:1 with 1/2 sugar, where I enjoy it best.

It's appearance is attractive, natural and clear, with a light yellow/green hue. As it is aged 18 months before bottling, this may account for the ever so slightly yellower cast to the color neat than I've seen in other Pernot offerings.

Its louche develops slowly and evenly with a steady build. There is nice smoke and fog action, and a clear distinct layer that disappears right at about 3.5:1. The final louche is pretty, opalescent, and has a color that is a mix of whites, greens and coppers. It is not as thick as some others, but is perfectly acceptable. I prepared this several ways: a fountain with a steady drip, an auto-verseur, and a single-hole glass brouilleur with a steady thin stream. In all these cases, the louche formed evenly and was just slightly translucent.

Sauvage's aroma is so promising. It is fresh, crisp, herbal and clean. There certainly is an alpine personality here. I detect more anise and fennel in the aroma than in the flavor, which is fine, as when drinking, the aroma supports the absinthe so well. It is an elegant and gentle aroma, yet has the promise of something spirited within. It was room-filling as water was added.

Its flavor is all about the wild-harvested wormwood; it is feral, clean and crisp, but also round and mellow. Perhaps this is due to the aging. There is an insistent pleasant bitterness that does not overwhelm, but I find 1/2 a sugar cube supports the absinthe well without changing its spirit and personality. The other elements reveal themselves behind the wormwood, in a clear, well thought-out supportive role.

The finish is wonderful. A quick build of spice, then a ballooning of florals and citrus. It lingers nicely, then starts to fade. However, just as you think it's over, there is a secondary, lesser bloom of citrus and pepper that is literally mouth-watering. At 3.5:1, the mouthfeel is rich and satisfying, It thins out a bit at 4:1, but I prefer this absinthe stronger, and thus rated it a 5.

I absolutely love this. For wormwood-forward fans, it's a must.

Traditional Absinthe
Reviewed by Scott M.     July 10, 2011
Last updated: January 05, 2013
Overall rating 
 
4.2
Appearance 
 
4.0
Louche 
 
4.0
Aroma 
 
4.5
Flavor / Mouthfeel 
 
4.5
Finish 
 
4.0
Overall 
 
4.0

A solid traditional absinthe.

Sampled at 3:1 and 4:1 with no sugar, over three sittings. This edit on the stars reflects the changes in the last two releases. It has improved quite a bit.

Color: Neat, a light amber/gold. Clear and natural. It suggests the feuille morte of a pre-ban, but is a bit lighter and thinner. If this were a tad deeper in color like a vintage feuille morte, or had a touch of green, I would have given it a 4. *The color in the later releases was not as amber, leaning toward a ore traditional green.

Louche: The louche builds nicely, with distinct layering. The final result is a slightly translucent dusky white, with edges of copper.

Aroma: Neat, the aroma is clean, crisp, and light. It opens slightly as the louche forms, but is not a powerful room-filling aroma, Wormwood is followed by anise, and herbals that suggest a tasty flavor is pending, as the glass is raised to the nose. The aroma as one is about to sip, is quite nice.

Flavor: This is the absinthe's strongest point; it is nicely balanced, gentle and refreshing. This is not a powerful profile, but light and playful. There is a touch of spice, pepper, and citrus. If you are looking for a strong punchy profile, this is not it...It however, is smooth, has something interesting going on, and is quite enjoyable. It is more powerful at 3:1, but it loses some of its softness and lighter herbal edges at less than 4:1, where I find it best.

Finish: The finish follows the flavor nicely; it too, is gentle and refreshing. There is a light build of elements, a decent linger, and a touch of pepper and citrus that hangs in as it fades. The mouthfeel is smooth and thick enough without being too heavy.

Overall: I think this absinthe is quite tasty and refreshing. The color, balance and smoothness suggests to me that the maker is trying to pay homage to the spirit of pre-ban in a modern commercial absinthe. I'm interested to see how this absinthe evolves past this first offering.

Traditional Absinthe
Reviewed by Scott M.     June 03, 2011
Last updated: June 03, 2011
Overall rating 
 
3.1
Appearance 
 
3.0
Louche 
 
3.0
Aroma 
 
3.0
Flavor / Mouthfeel 
 
3.0
Finish 
 
4.0
Overall 
 
3.0

Certainly a different take on absinthe

Sampled at 3:1, 4:1 and 4.5:1, where I found it most drinkable. No sugar.

Color: A very faint yellow hue. It is almost clear, and looks natural.

Louche: It develops quite quickly, and is fairly thick. At 4.5:1 however, it looked appropriate and pretty.

Aroma: Neat, it smells delicious; honey, pear, traces of anise and wormwood way in the back. It seemed more liqueur-like than absinthe to me. As water was added, it grew less and less sweet and fruity, becoming a bit medicinal. Still, it is a quality aroma, just not one I personally equate with absinthe. For this reason, I gave it a 3.

Flavor: I struggle here, as it is not bad tasting. It is in fact quite well-crafted, it simply isn't very much like absinthe to me. The medicinal edge comes from a menthol element that reminds me a bit of cough drops...tasty ones however. Still this threw me a bit. The trad elements of absinthe were harder to detect at the higher dilutions, where I found this more drinkable.

Finish: Quite a nice finish. Gently bitter, layered elements, a nice build and decay. Perhaps the highlight of this absinthe for me.

Overall: The aroma, flavor and finish work well together and meld nicely. It is certainly a well-crafted drink. For me however, it is too far off the track of what I enjoy in absinthe profiles. Some however, may really like this, perhaps due to the mead element.

Traditional Absinthe
Reviewed by Scott M.     April 28, 2011
Last updated: April 28, 2011
Overall rating 
 
3.7
Appearance 
 
3.0
Louche 
 
4.0
Aroma 
 
4.0
Flavor / Mouthfeel 
 
4.0
Finish 
 
3.0
Overall 
 
4.0

A nice affordable absinthe

I never had the original, but this appears to be improved greatly over it, from what I'm hearing from people who've had both.

Sampled 2.5:1, 3:1 with no sugar. Higher is inappropriate for the absinthe, as it's ABV is 45, and it would simply be too weak and thin. It is lightly bitter, but there is enough sweetness in this for me as is. Some might like this more with sugar.

Color: a natural light green with a bit of yellow, just a tad thin for my eye.

Louche: The louche is a bit thin, but not overly so, and is ample for this absinthe.
It is complete by 2:1 with a slow ice-cold slow drip. It's opalescent, but just a tad too thin to be ideal for me. I'm giving it a 4 here, as I feel it works with this absinthe, and a 3 would be too low.

Aroma: Quite nice. Herbs, hints of flowers and plenty of wormwood.

Flavor: I like this, and find it has a very decent wormwood-forward personality. It is not terribly complex, but it is tasty enough that I reach for the bottle from time to time, and enjoy the glass.

Finish: A decent finish, just not remarkable. It recedes fairly quickly, but nothing jumps out in a bad way at all. I enjoy the flavor in the finish...a nice wormwood presence.

Overall: This is a good choice for casual drinking, as it is a full liter for a very good price. I would share this with friends for an afternoon drink, and for a nice glass at night just to relax. It would be a nice choice for a large party as well, due to its size. This absinthe has a place on the shelf for me as a casual enjoyable absinthe. If you are ordering from Europe, this might be a good choice to pad the total to a free-shipping level.

Traditional Absinthe
Reviewed by Scott M.     April 12, 2011
Last updated: November 12, 2012
Overall rating 
 
4.5
Appearance 
 
4.0
Louche 
 
4.0
Aroma 
 
5.0
Flavor / Mouthfeel 
 
5.0
Finish 
 
5.0
Overall 
 
4.0

Very well-made la bleue

This is a really delicious absinthe. Sampled at both 3:1 and 4:1. The more delicate florals open up at the higher dilution, but it is more powerful and spicy at 3:1. It depends on one's mood!

Color: Perfectly clear with no sediment

Louche: Attractive display of smoke and mist, pretty solid by 2:1 however, just a bit quick forming, but not as quick as many other blanches. It ends in a pretty translucent white with suggestions of light blue.

Aroma: Neat, the aroma is very promising. It is sweet, floral and lightly herbal. As water is added, the room filled with flowers and herbs. A clean, crisp, light, and fresh aroma. The classic character of Swiss la bleue, with just a bit more going on.

Flavor: What an interesting and delicious flavor! The trinity is very well balanced, with a simply wonderful sweet fennel. I don't sugar blanches, and sugar here would be a big mistake, as it is quite sweet to begin with. This is lightly spicy, floral, and has a subtle element that is different from most blanches, that I can't quite pin down.

Finish: A very high quality, layered finish. It builds, unfolds, and lingers nicely. Not as powerful as some...but a smooth delicate ride that fits this recipe. It has a nice smooth mouthfeel without being too thick.

Overall: I'd say this is one of the better blanches from Switzerland. If you like a sweet and floral blanche, you'll enjoy this.



Traditional Absinthe
Reviewed by Scott M.     March 15, 2011
Last updated: January 05, 2013
Overall rating 
 
4.5
Appearance 
 
4.0
Louche 
 
5.0
Aroma 
 
5.0
Flavor / Mouthfeel 
 
4.5
Finish 
 
4.0
Overall 
 
4.0

Very Worthy Swiss Verte

EDIT: I'm on my 2nd bottle of this, and am liking it even more. I've changed the louche from a 4 to a 5.

This is a tasty, refreshing and clean absinthe. I enjoyed it best at 4:1 with no sugar. This is the latest batch. I suspect it has improvements since the earlier reviews, as I have read notes on French sites about the maker's changes in the wormwood and flavor.

Color: clear and natural, a mix of gold and light green.

Louche: The louche is wonderful on this absinthe. Evenly building with an attractive color when complete. It is rich and thick, but not overly so.

Aroma: Very nice; anise and sweet florals with a gentle wormwood. Clean and inviting.

Flavor: The sweet anise is ahead of the wormwood here, but the wormwood is absolutely delicious...Alpine...fresh. All the elements are there, nicely balanced. If you like an anise forward verte, you will certainly enjoy this. There is a fruity edge, with citrus in the mix. A clean, bright and tasty flavor. Sugar would make this too sweet.

Finish: A quality finish with a light pinch and build. It fits perfectly with the flavor. The linger could have been a tad longer, but still quite nice.

Overall, a very solid absinthe, and is my favorite Swiss verte.

Traditional Absinthe
Reviewed by Scott M.     March 15, 2011
Last updated: January 05, 2013
Overall rating 
 
4.5
Appearance 
 
4.0
Louche 
 
4.0
Aroma 
 
5.0
Flavor / Mouthfeel 
 
4.5
Finish 
 
5.0
Overall 
 
4.5

I'm glad this frog hopped across the pond.

Enjoyed tremendously at both 3.5:1 and 4:1 no sugar. 4:1 yields the more delicate notes. 3.5:1 for me was the perfect balance of strength and softness.

Color: A clear and natural golden yellow with the tiniest kiss of light green. It fits somehow, but for a new fresh absinthe, a touch more green would have yielded a 5.

Louche: Slow steady build, not a lot of dramatic effect or layering, but a lovely opalescent finale. Its final colors are a light green with hints of copper, and suggestions of light blue. Very nice. A bit on the thinner side, without being too thin.

Aroma: Simply wonderful. Blossoming anise and wormwood, surrounded by flowers, perfume, alpine herbs and candy. Artful.

Flavor: As good as the aroma, for all the same reasons. It has some of the same notes as L'Italienne, but more floral and delicate, yet, it is still a powerful profile. This is quite an accomplishment. Both yin AND yang, at the same time....I believe that indicates balance...such would be the case here. Anise, wormwood, flowers, citrus. Simply delicious, and unique.

Finish: Crisp, clean, dry and complex. A light spicy build, layers of elements; herbs, spice, citrus, florals. A delicate citrus linger and tingle.

Overall: This is a must folks. Simply one the best I've had. We need to mention this as a strong exception when speaking of Czech absinthe from now on!

Traditional Absinthe
Reviewed by Scott M.     February 28, 2011
Last updated: January 15, 2013
Overall rating 
 
4.6
Appearance 
 
5.0
Louche 
 
4.5
Aroma 
 
4.5
Flavor / Mouthfeel 
 
4.5
Finish 
 
4.5
Overall 
 
4.5

Montana Meadow

*Edited after receiving a very recent batch from 2012. The first review was an early bottling.

I enjoy it best at 4:1 with no sugar, after experimenting with 3:1, 4:1 and 5:1, with and without sugar.

Color: A lovely clear and natural light peridot. Beautiful.

Louche: A nicely paced, even build with swirling trails and light play. The final louche is perfectly opalescent, and a pretty light green with touches of yellows, gold, copper, and impressions of blue at the top edge. This later bottling has a slightly thicker louche than my first early bottle, which I like.

Aroma: A Montana alpine meadow. Fresh and clean. The room filled with flowers and herbs as water was added. The recent bottle's aroma has evolved, and is fuller and rounder.

Flavor: This is delicious. There is soft, but pronounced wormwood backed by a high quality anise and fennel, wrapped in flowers and herbs. The maker clearly feels strongly about the herbal elements, as they are so carefully selected, right up front, and balanced. It is crisp, lightly dry, spicy, but nothing overwhelms. The flavor in this new bottle is as I expected, a clear evolution from the promising early batches I sampled.

Finish: A wonderful finish; a light tingle and steady build of elements, with a smooth moothfeel. A solid linger with layers of pepper, citrus and florals.

Overall, after sampling this new bottle, I'd have to say this is one of the best American absinthes being made. Great job guys!

Traditional Absinthe
Reviewed by Scott M.     February 12, 2011
Last updated: January 05, 2013
Overall rating 
 
3.7
Appearance 
 
3.0
Louche 
 
4.0
Aroma 
 
4.0
Flavor / Mouthfeel 
 
3.5
Finish 
 
3.5
Overall 
 
4.0

Tenneyson anyone?

Enjoyed at 3:1, no sugar.

Color: Clear, but just a tiny bit of very minute floating specks in the bottle. Hardly worth mentioning, but I noticed them, and gave it a 3, as 4 requires "clear" in this review model.

Louche: The louche develops evenly and at a nice pace, not too quickly as I've seen in many other blanches. Thick trails and swirls, nice layering. Though not a super-thick louche, it is just dense enough to be cloudy with very nice light play and opalescence. Some nice copper highlights at the bottom and edges of the Egg glass.

Aroma: Alpine meadow with a kiss of Gin. The addition of Juniper berry does not overwhelm the classic Swiss La Bleue style background. Fresh, crisp and inviting.

Flavor: This is a tasty blanche. The Gin element is clear, but does not overpower the absinthe itself. If you do not like gin, this may not be for you, but juniper goes so well with the other trad elements of absinthe, that I liked it quite a bit. The balance of all elements is well-crafted. Imagine a really nice La Bleue with a few drops of quality gin in for personality, and you'll know what to expect. Different enough however that some will not like it.

Finish: A slightly thin mouthfeel, but a decent build, peaking with tasty layers of spice, citrus and pepper. A gentle pinch on the tongue and roof of the mouth fades nicely, leaving traditional absinthe edges, but also a non-traditional kiss of gin.

Quite nice. Not my favorite blanche, but it's interesting. Don't overwater this one, and it certainly doesn't need sugar. For me, more than 3:1 would weaken the louche, mouthfeel and crisp edge this offers. Nice work, and different! I can see this might be great for cocktails as well.

Faux Absinthe
Reviewed by Scott M.     January 24, 2011
Last updated: January 24, 2011
Overall rating 
 
1.7
Appearance 
 
2.0
Louche 
 
3.0
Aroma 
 
2.0
Flavor / Mouthfeel 
 
1.0
Finish 
 
1.0
Overall 
 
1.0

Pretty hard to drink

Color: Thin light yellow with a hint of faint green. Clear with no sediment. I was close to giving this a 3 as it is not artificial looking, but it was just not quite in the range of absinthe color to me.

Louche: It louches pretty quickly, and is a bit thick at 3:1, I took this to at 4:1 due to the strong alcohol smell.

Aroma: Neat, mainly alcohol with a touch of anise. Softens a bit after water, but still has no herbals or florals I could detect, just a weak "Good n' Plenty" edge.

Flavor: Man this is tough to drink. I tried it with no sugar first. Forget it...WAY too bitter. I added in the equiv of 1 sugar with simple syrup. Still too bitter, and getting too sweet. One more bit of syrup, now sickeningly sweet, and STILL too bitter. A touch of anise hiding behind the horrid bitterness.

Finish: Whatever MIGHT be going on here is ruined by the overly sweet, yet lingering powerful, harsh bitterness.

Overall: It resembles absinthe enough not to be the worst I've had, but it is so bitter and sweet at the same time once the needed sugar is added, that it is pretty hard to drink. I was torn between a 1 and a 2 here, as I feel it needs help, but is also unacceptable. I also don't like the "thujone hype" on Alandia's website, and wish they'd knock that off.

Faux Absinthe
Reviewed by Scott M.     January 21, 2011
Last updated: January 22, 2011
Overall rating 
 
1.6
Appearance 
 
2.0
Louche 
 
2.0
Aroma 
 
1.0
Flavor / Mouthfeel 
 
2.0
Finish 
 
2.0
Overall 
 
1.0

Perfectly named.

Color: A light bluish green, attractive if you like pretty colors, but not natural looking for absinthe.

Louche: It started with promise; strong trails and curls, but quickly turned to a weak mist that by 2:1 was simply already too thin. By 3:1, it was barely there at all.

Aroma: I'm giving it a 1, as inappropriate. It simply doesn't smell like absinthe.
Neat, I sensed a hint of anise, but was overwhelmed by a strange combination of spice, medicine, candy, and insect repellent, with a nice bang of rubbing alcohol on top.

Flavor: It reminded me a bit of Le Tourment Verte...that is not a good thing. I gave it a 2, as some people might enjoy the flavor, it simply however, is not what I would call absinthe. There is an odd medicinal cough-drop or mouthwash edge, a sweetness, and a strong, harsh, and bitter wormwood. Sugar makes it too sweet, no sugar is just as bad for other reasons.

Finish: It has a thin mouthfeel, is very 1 dimensional, and fades quickly leaving a mostly bitter and light medicinal aftertaste. I tasted this for a long long time after I was done. I was not happy about that.

Overall: Wow. How do I say this? This stuff is pretty bad. I gave it a 1, as absinthe, IMHO, it is not acceptable. I tried this 2 times, with some thought between samplings, last night, and this afternoon. I had to stop both times after half a glass. My fear here is that with Alandia's description on their website about "mental activation", "seeing things differently", and quoting Oscar Wilde, that they are harming the reputation of real absinthe with this stuff, and misleading people who are falling for the hype. It is just potentially drinkable enough, that for people who like being misled and want to see the green fairy, be naughty, and text their friends about it, that they might keep drinking it!

Reviewed by Scott M.     January 04, 2011
Last updated: October 14, 2011
Overall rating 
 
4.5
Appearance 
 
5.0
Louche 
 
4.0
Aroma 
 
5.0
Flavor / Mouthfeel 
 
4.0
Finish 
 
5.0
Overall 
 
4.0

A slightly mellower bird

Please read my Original Perroquet review for details, as this is a comparison.

In a nutshell, I did a side by side sample of both versions, and love them both.
The oak barrel version is smoother, and bit more mellow and balanced. The same heartbeat is there, but the aging has toned down one or two sharper elements into a warm, rounder, refined absinthe that I am sad is not going to be reproduced! I do detect a tiny bit of oaky flavor in the taste, but it is not strong or overpowering...more of a nuance. I would give the flavor a 4.5 were I allowed to, as I like it a bit more than its oakless sister.

I will continue to drink Perroquet, despite the lack of oak barrel bottles in the future, as I love its grape base, and enjoy the flavor and finish quite a bit.

Traditional Absinthe
Reviewed by Scott M.     December 16, 2010
Last updated: October 27, 2011
Overall rating 
 
3.6
Appearance 
 
4.0
Louche 
 
4.0
Aroma 
 
4.0
Flavor / Mouthfeel 
 
3.0
Finish 
 
4.0
Overall 
 
3.0

Good satire to the Val de Travesty

*Edited

Color: A lovely crystal clear light peridot. Very attractive. Louched, it was a lovely shade of light green, with white and hints of blue.

Louche: Builds at a nice steady pace with distinct layering. A lovely shade of light green, and a pretty translucent glow when complete. A bit on the thin side, but not overly so.

Aroma: Clean, crisp and promising. A light herbal profile reveals itself as water is added.

Flavor: Wormwood up front with a tactile, but pleasant bitterness. There is a strong pungent edge to this wormwood, that I'm on the fence about. I had to take it to 5:1 before I found it tasty enough to enjoy, however, It was a bit thin here. There is a sweet element as well, so I had to be careful about too much sugar. For me, it needed just a tad. Tasty anise as well, wrapped in a strong herbal blanket. A very different flavor than I expected from Matter, but interesting. I'd describe it as herbal, with a slight medicinal edge...lacking in the floral and spicy elements I enjoy so much in other Matter recipes. If you like a strong and forceful wormwood, you may enjoy this more than I do. It's good, just not one of my favorite profiles.

Finish: Good mouthfeel at lower dilutions, but thin at the 5:1 I settled on. A strong pull, with layering and build of all the flavor elements. Again, nicely bitter, but not overly so.

Traditional Absinthe
Reviewed by Scott M.     December 12, 2010
Last updated: December 12, 2010
Overall rating 
 
3.0
Appearance 
 
2.0
Louche 
 
3.0
Aroma 
 
3.0
Flavor / Mouthfeel 
 
4.0
Finish 
 
3.0
Overall 
 
3.0

Very interesting!

A very interesting absinthe. I sampled this at 3:1 and 4:1.

Color: What can you say, it's bright red! How can you grade this? I gave it a 2, despite it being clear of sediment, it just did not look completely natural. The color louched was a light peach. Not something I found terribly attractive.

Louche: Acceptable, and an appropriate clouding without being too thick. Simply again, not very attractive to me in the end.

Arome: I liked the aroma, it was anise and flowers all the way. It smelled candy-like, but was inviting and interesting.

Flavor: This is the highlight of Serpis; despite it being mainly anise, there was a hint of decent wormwood, but it offered an unique light spice, fruit and floral edge that i've not had in anything else. It was light and refreshing, with a tasty twangle. This needed no sugar.

Finish: Decent, but not remarkable. A tingly anise that lingers, with a gentle tingle in the back.

Overall: I can see why this would interest people...it's red. That should not be the reason you want to try it, but let's face it, for most...this will be why! It is worthy of being sampled at an event, and I might buy a bottle every couple years or so for this reason.

Faux Absinthe
Reviewed by Scott M.     December 04, 2010
Last updated: December 04, 2010
Overall rating 
 
1.3
Appearance 
 
1.0
Louche 
 
2.0
Aroma 
 
2.0
Flavor / Mouthfeel 
 
1.0
Finish 
 
1.0
Overall 
 
1.0

These people can't be serious

This infuriates me. The word absinthe has no place on this attractive bottle full of bad mouthwash.

The color may as well come out of a bottle of scope, which by the way tastes better than this, and claims in no way to be absinthe.

As far as aroma, it is a portent of things to come. Things I didn't want. I had no sense that this would resemble absinthe in any way. It smelled like another concoction, and one that some might enjoy, just not me.

Flavor. Yikes. alcohol, bad mint-like touches, after-shave, chemicals and confusion.
It in fact might pass as a different drink, and rate better. As an absinthe however, a 1 is fair.

Louche was thin, but it almost happened. A weak cloud formed.

Finish. Yes, it almost finished me. I simply can't think of anything to say here.

Overall, this is an insult to absinthe. Call it anything else for the love of God, but not absinthe. I can actually imagine people drinking this and enjoying it. Sad, but true. What was it P. T. Barnum said? Not one person in the room was able to drink more than a sip or two. They were being generous.

Traditional Absinthe
Reviewed by Scott M.     November 29, 2010
Overall rating 
 
4.2
Appearance 
 
4.0
Louche 
 
4.0
Aroma 
 
5.0
Flavor / Mouthfeel 
 
4.0
Finish 
 
4.0
Overall 
 
4.0

Quite nice

A very nice refreshing blanche. 4:1 prepared with a brouilleur.

The color was perfectly clear with no sediment.

Its aroma is the highlight for certain; crisp yet delicate, herbals and flowers.

The louche was a bit fast, but it ended up in a nice opalescent white with hints of blue and copper flashes.

Its flavor is quite nice; citrus and mint flirt around the anise and wormwood playfully. light and refreshing. Sugar would be way over the top in this absinthe.

Her finish (it's a her) was good, but not stellar. I'm not a fan of star anise, but the light pull and balance of elements made me want more. The build is promising and quality, but It simply fades too soon to be a 5. Still, quite nice.

Overall, this is a very nice blanche that is well balanced and refreshing. For those who want a delicate blanche, this is a solid choice.

Traditional Absinthe
Reviewed by Scott M.     October 28, 2010
Last updated: October 14, 2011
Overall rating 
 
4.3
Appearance 
 
4.0
Louche 
 
4.0
Aroma 
 
5.0
Flavor / Mouthfeel 
 
4.0
Finish 
 
5.0
Overall 
 
4.0

Pretty Parrot

Sampled at 3:1 and 4:1 with and without sugar, over a month of drinking this.
I enjoyed it every way I tried it.

Color: is a very natural and light peridot. Were it a tiny bit deeper and richer it would have been perfect for my eyes.

Louche: For those who consider action important, thick swirling trails turn slowly to smoke, then build into a rolling fog. Lovely to watch. For me, the ultimate test is the final louche; a lovely light green with opalescent light play.

Aroma: A warm yet crisp and inviting aroma neat. The grape base was clearly evident. A subtle woody quality that promised good things to come. Upon adding water, the grape base opens and a light herbal aroma wafts up. Inviting and promising.

Flavor: Artful, light, balanced, floral, fruity, warm, crisp, delicious. A perfect blend of the trinity with light spice and florals. Anise is backed up by fennel and a lightly bitter and delicious wormwood. I am sensing the sweet floral influence of pontica as well, along with a sweet conifer edge of hyssop. The grape base is absolutlely wonderful, perhaps the best grape base I've experienced; it is warm, round and sophisticated. Not at all overpowering in any way. I could drink this forever and never get tired of it. There is a slight warm woodiness in the background that is just wonderful that again, is perhaps part of this fine grape base. I have downgraded it to a 4, as I sense the slightest bit of alcohol from time to time, and its "oak barrel" sister is an improvement on this. I love
this flavor profile, and it is a favorite everyday "go to" for me!

Finish: A very nice finish that pulls lightly, unfolds, and lingers. Very nice tingle at the back of the mouth and tip of the tongue. Sweet, yet slightly bitter...a gentle and very nice finish. I was left with a warm velvet-like feel from the grape base. A delicious fennel hangs in there until the end.

Overall: Pernot is gifting us all with great absinthe. Between Maison Fontaine, this very nice absinthe, and Berthe De Joux, they have redefined commercial French absinthe and established themselves as one of the best there is.

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