Corsair Red - Reviewed by Experts and Consumers at The Wormwood Society

2.9 (5)
Corsair Red - Reviewed by Experts and Consumers at The Wormwood Society

Product Details

Available in USA?
Degrees ABV (% alcohol)
Country of Origin
Wormwood Society Editor Comments
A 'tweaked' absinthe with citrus, tarragon and hibiscus.

User reviews

5 reviews
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Flavor / Mouthfeel
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Overall rating
Color: Orange, pink, amber. When I received the bottle, it had been bought at the distillery in Kentucky and then sat in the trunk of a car during the hot summer for a week before it arrived to me in Canada. Despite the intense heat, the color was still bright pink and orange. I’ve now had the bottle for over a year and the brightness has faded and the color is a little be more amber now. It’s obviously naturally colored. I’m not going to remove points for the changes in color due to the extreme temperatures the bottle has been subjected to.

Louche: Nice trails. Thin milk, pale orange/pink. A little dull.

Aroma: Sweet, citrus, floral, red berries, sharp minty pine. Very nice.

Flavor: Flavor is more spicy and herbal than the aroma. Definitely a lot of wormwood in this one. Bitter alpine wormwood is up front, spice, grass, tarragon, rose petals, violets, grain alcohol and astringent. The use of hibiscus to color the absinthe explains the astringency. Body is thin. I did a few tastings of this absinthe over the span of several months. I’m not 100% sure on this but going by my notes I think the flavor has changed slightly. Bitter wormwood flavors seem more prominent and the sweet & floral flavors seem more subdued. This could also be from external factors that can affect taste perception. Thought I would mention it anyway.
Finish: Finish is dry and tongue-numbing. Dry bitterness lasts a long time. This left me wanting to take another sip.

Overall: I generally sugar vertes and drink blanches without sugar. Since this is neither a blanche nor a verte I tried it both ways and I found it benefited from sugar. The sweetness enhanced and complimented the floral notes. It also helped with the bitterness.
Despite the gimmick of a red absinthe this absinthe is on the right path. Based on the fact that it’s red, it’s the only absinthe the distillery produces and knowing that it would be different I expected it to be worse than it was. They’re definitely creative with their spirits over at Corsair and it shows in this absinthe. It has the traditional components but with a twist. I don’t mind that it’s eccentric but it needs to be more balanced and show higher quality.
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Possibility is there
(Updated: July 14, 2012)
Overall rating
Batch 22 Bottle 50/60

Appearance; neat-light gold,white grapes. Louched-milky,maybe a hint of pink edges. Very cream colored.

Louche; thick wispy oil trails clouding from the bottom up. Very thick at 3/1 no translusence at all.

Aroma; Neat- Hibiscus, clean light grain alcohol, vanilla, nice, not harsh.
During louche- Powerful, very absinthy, wormwoody and slightly floral, faint tarragon. Nicely done. Balanced. soft and floral

Flavor; Peppery and floral, dry with a citrus and tarragon bite.
Mouthfeel; very silky, powdery.

Finish; Dry, slightly bitter and lasting with a noticable tingle on the back and sides of the tongue

Overall; well its definitely absinthe. Could do without the tarragon and hibiscus i believe. Wish it was a verte. Doesn't really leave you looking for the next glass but drinkable and not unpleasant. It has possibilities if it wasn't a rouge.
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Style but no Substance
Overall rating
Appearance: The deep and dark color has faded to a natural amber hue. It's clear and clean but also dark.

Louche: Extremely thin. The louche started well but ended up way too thin. It does actually louche and at 112 proof be careful not to overwater, but even accounting for that it is thin.

Aroma: Flowery and herbal dominant. I smell the promising tones of the usual absinthe trinity as well as something spicy. The overall herbal bill smells suspiciously cheap though, as if the herbs weren't properly cured. Although I don't know for sure so don't just take my word on that.

Flavor: The bitter and tangy floral hibiscus dominates this absinthe. The traditional absinthe flavors are barely there and in the background. This is way out of balance and seems more like a hibiscus drink than absinthe.

Finish: The bitterness fades away rather quickly leaving a slight but more pleasing finish. Otherwise not much to go home writing about.

Overall: The aroma got my hopes up but this honestly seems like an amateurish effort, and a bit gimmicky being a Rouge and the only absinthe this distillery produces.
Top 10 Reviewer 70 reviews
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Somewhat disappointed
Overall rating
Appearance: A pale topaz, much like a cup of white tea.

Louche: Started out somewhat promising, but after adding enough water for a proper dilution, it became quite weak.

Aroma: Pretty medicinal and camphorous...what tastes like old and not very high quality wormwood, and some masculine fennel. Something like a "foody" herb (I'm guessing the tarragon) which is not particularly refreshing or something I would expect in a beverage.

Flavor: Very grassy and bitter. Clearly needs more anise.

Finish: The finish has some lasting power, but it's still bitter, with a slight mintiness.

Overall: This is exactly what I mean when I've said in that past the almost all rouges need apologies...they're just not great examples of good-tasting absinthe, but people want to try them because they're a little more unique. This seems to be fairly typical of most rouges...not able to hold it's own among vertes and blanches, but passable as a rouge.
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Off the Beaten Path
Overall rating
(Batch 29; no sugar)

COLOR: Clear & natural looking. This sample was not really red at all, just a very faint "coral" hue. I was hoping for a rosier tint.

LOUCHE: Swirls form quickly, turning the glass more pearl than pink at about a 3:1 water to absinthe ratio. Attractive.

AROMA: An initial sweetness common to many of the blanches I've tried, then turning more to citrus. Intriguing.

FLAVOR: Not a strong traditional anise/fennel presence; more of a slightly bitter-sweet citrus characteristic. Reminds me a bit of grapefruit. Pleasant, but a little more balance would make it more so.

FINISH: Crisp and dry, slightly numbing. Almost gin-like.

OVERALL: I would agree with the label notes that it is "tweaked". It's not your typical absinthe, but I found it refreshingly different. If you don't mind some experimentation with the traditional, a la St. George or Germain-Robin, you might enjoy this, as well.
I'll be reaching for this bottle again as a nice summer beverage.
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