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Review Detail

Absinthe Sauvage
Traditional Absinthe
Absolutely Delicious
(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
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.
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