Reviews written by shady2001

5 results - showing 1 - 5
 
 
Traditional Absinthe
Reviewed by shady2001     March 19, 2014
Overall rating 
 
4.7
Appearance 
 
4.5
Louche 
 
5.0
Aroma 
 
5.0
Flavor / Mouthfeel 
 
4.5
Finish 
 
4.5
Overall 
 
4.5

The True Heir to Pernod Fils

PF 1901, 2013 Bottling

I had great expectations for the 1901 even before tasting it, but suffice to say that they were well and truly vindicated: It is truly the smoothest, most balanced modern absinthe I have ever tasted.

The louche and aroma are its strongest points, with the floral aroma filling the room and whetting the appetite. With the addition of ice cold water, the light greenish product starts to develop billowing clouds and swirls, eventually setting into a completely opaque, light greenish concoction. It seems to be just right at 1:4 to 1:4.5 dilution, with half a cube of sugar.

The PF 1901 is deceptively refreshing: it is far too easy to go through two to three glasses without feeling any alcohol heat - it is THAT smooth thanks to the superb quality of the marc base, it almost seems non-alcoholic - an incredible feat for a 68% ABV distillate. The mouthfeel is rounded, like drinking liquid silk. As for the taste, it is laced with moderate spice on the head, but rapidly mellows into anise and a particularly pronounced fennel body, segueing into slight bitterness of a distinctive wormwood finish. The perfect holy trinity, no one herb predominates; all key ingredients can be tasted in equal portion - it's nothing especially unorthodox, but goes back to the basics, albeit leaps and bounds better than any other marque today.

Although I have not yet had a sample of vintage Pernod Fils, the Jade, when judged by its own merits, is the contemporary iteration of a traditional absinthe par excellence, with everything as it should be. The paragon of refinement.

Traditional Absinthe
Reviewed by shady2001     March 10, 2014
Overall rating 
 
4.1
Appearance 
 
4.5
Louche 
 
3.0
Aroma 
 
4.5
Flavor / Mouthfeel 
 
4.5
Finish 
 
3.0
Overall 
 
4.5

A Whimsical Delight

I was pleasantly surprised by Angelique, especially after reading other opinions on this singular green offering from the distiller of Clandestine (my favourite blanche/bleue). I was expecting a detonation of bitter wormwood on the tongue, but instead was assailed by a bouquet of fragrances. It contains a perfume-like, incredibly distinctive floral aroma which sets it apart from its counterparts, which I surmise to be part of the Angelica-forward profile.

Those who dislike wormwood on the attack (such as most of the EPs) should find Angelique a treat, which in my opinion boasts, quite unquestionably, a sweeter, more complex flavour profile than the Roquette or Authentique for example. The addition of sugar really opens it up, so I'd advise not skipping this step, but rather sugaring to taste. I took points off due to my detection of an inferior quality alcohol, probably grain based instead of marc spirit, which had a noticeable chemical taste (like most other spirits, I may add) and left me feeling the buzz rather quickly. I cannot recommend this absinthe more: it is fairly priced and extremely delicious - drinkable everyday.

Appearance: Very green, almost emerald.
Louche: Unremarkable
Aroma: Complex sweet bouquet
Flavour: Smooth, silky, complex, with very little spiciness obscuring the herb profile
Finish: Ordinary and fleeting

Absinthe Substitutes
Reviewed by shady2001     February 10, 2014
Overall rating 
 
2.5
Appearance 
 
3.5
Louche 
 
2.0
Aroma 
 
2.5
Flavor / Mouthfeel 
 
2.0
Finish 
 
3.0
Overall 
 
2.5

An objective assessment...

It's not absinthe, and priced way below absinthe. Perhaps a better comparison would be with other faux absinthes, particularly of the czech variety, when you want something else for a change.

PROS:

+ Cheap
+ Found everywhere
+ Inoffensive taste
+ Sweet
+ Refreshing
+ Lower volume of (rather poorly made) alcohol
+ No spurious marketing
+ Established brand = subject to quality control

CONS:

- Aroma: Anise, Head: Anise, Body: Anise, Finish: Anise
- Oily
- Clearly unnatural colour
- Poor quality base alcohol
- Essentially drinkable liquorice

In my opinion this is a clear winner when compared with crapsinth. Whether or not Pernod is a so-called "acceptable substitute" is a point of debate, but judged solely in itself, it is by and large very drinkable, although it obviously will not appeal to connoisseurs.

Traditional Absinthe
Reviewed by shady2001     February 09, 2014
Overall rating 
 
4.4
Appearance 
 
5.0
Louche 
 
5.0
Aroma 
 
4.0
Flavor / Mouthfeel 
 
4.0
Finish 
 
4.0
Overall 
 
4.5

General tasting notes concerning Edouard cf. 1901

Since there already is a wealth of information about this highly regarded product, I thought it more useful to highlight the distinct qualities of the Edouard in relation to its sister, the PF1901. Thus, a finicky buyer (like me) will hopefully be able to reach a conclusion as to the eternal question of which Jade to buy.

L'Espirit D'Edouard is at once strikingly similar to the PF1901, with the pronounced flavour of the same marc base readily apparent midway through the first sip. The colour is more greenish as opposed to the slightly paler 1901, a perfect hue that is in every way pleasing to the eye. Upon the addition of water, the absinthe louches at a moderate pace until the glass is half full, upon which clouds of opalescent green start to flocculate throughout at a tremendous pace. The result at 1:5 is a slightly verdant-grey and completely translucent.

Edouard hits harder than the 1901 in the palate, with immediate spicy notes battering the tastebuds, and then receding to a alpine cocktail of herbs which is harmoniously balanced with plenty of subtle flavours. The finish is primarily anise, and then traces of wormwood after the tongue dries. For a 72% ABV, the alcohol heat is almost unnoticeable, once again speaking volumes about the superior quality of the product. Unfortunately, I recall that the aftertaste does not linger for more than ten minutes, so in this regard the 1901 will probably be the more satisfying.

The final verdict is that the 1901 is probably more suitable as a summer digestif: floral, incredibly balanced and refreshing when taken very cold. Edouard will fare better, as I suspect, in the wintry months, with its potent herbacious and spicy notes perking the taster up. It must be reiterated that both of them are very close in their similarities (as opposed to other marques) and few individuals, other than the most discerning of absintheurs, will find that the slight difference warrants heavy consideration.

Faux Absinthe
Reviewed by shady2001     February 06, 2014
Last updated: February 06, 2014
Overall rating 
 
0.5
Appearance 
 
0.5
Louche 
 
0.5
Aroma 
 
0.5
Flavor / Mouthfeel 
 
0.5
Finish 
 
0.5
Overall 
 
0.5

What did Australia do to deserve this?

This is Australia's most visible 'absinth', sold in most bottle shops and heavily promoted in bars.
I have no idea how to even begin describing this drink, which, by the way, is not cheap: it's AUD 140 to the litre!

It has the appearance of listerine, except even more vibrant, and even more shocking.
A whiff of it proved redolent of poor quality vodka with some drops of eau de toilette added to the mix. It does not louche. It simply turns a lighter shade of neon green. Don't bother with a slow drip - I assure you nothing interesting will happen!

This drink actually tastes better neat than with water.
The flavour is, to put simply, very bitter and industrial with some indiscernible flavourings. It obviously resembles very strong grain alcohol, but there is something else in the mix, a "blend of herbs and spices" to quote the label. It may or may not contain wormwood, but that itself seems unimportant. There is no anise whatsoever. It is completely undrinkable.

Please pass the message along about this drink to your mates because this crap is literally sold everywhere! May I suggest getting pastis from the shelf instead, which, despite not being a true absinthe as well, is actually rather enjoyable to drink and much closer to the real thing.

N.B.: Also see Stromu reviews, as they are probably the same thing, just rebranded.

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