Enigma Verte FDC - Reviewed by Experts and Consumers at The Wormwood Society

3.8 (2)

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Wormwood Society Editor Comments
This version of the Enigma Verte line has been carefully aged in 300 litre French oak barrels to give it a smooth creamy finish which conjures up the complexities of a pre-ban absinthe.

Editor reviews

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barrel aging has added some interesting qualities
(Updated: July 04, 2013)
Overall rating
Color: Barrel aging has taken the vibrant peridot green of the original and toned it down a bit, without creating a full fuille morte effect. Inviting.
Louche: as with the original, a nice build, leading to a well formed, deep louche with hints of yellow and white with touches of brown
Aroma: anise is still prominant with fennel, veronica, and wormwood as supporting players. I still get the tea aromas as well, but this time they are complimented by an underlying sweetness that is reminiscent of mallow flowers.
Flavor/Mouthfeel: Mouth coating and still not too thick. The wormwood has definitely been toned down by the barrel aging, an effect I've also noticed when making barrel aged bitters. It smooths it out, leaving the flavors without as much astringency.
Finish: wormwood and anise, but accompanied by a slight tannic dryness brought on by the barrels.
Overall: A very interesting riff on the original. Barrel aging can certainly play a decisive roll in rounding out flavors. Grab bottles (or samples) of both and experience the differences that wood can bring to the experience. I enjoyed it.
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User reviews

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Appearance: A softened yellow with just a little green hue. Clear but not bright or vibrant looking.

Louche: The final louche retains a bit of color and becomes somewhat murky because of this. Other than that it's time to get down with the thickness because this absinthe brings it.

Aroma: Grapefruit surprises me as well as a soft almost powdered sugar aroma. The anise is very forward accented by floral and wormwood notes.

Flavor: Piquant anise and some heat is the first to hit followed by floral and vanilla tones. At first the texture is rough but it smooths out quickly. Much like the aroma it is very anise forward.

Finish: Citrus tones comes out more while the texture continues to smooth out. It hit the side of the palate only in the finish. If you didn't already detect the use of star anise, you will definitely find it in the finish. The typical wood-age notes show up most predominately here with vanilla riding out the end pleasantly.

Overall: While at first this appears to just be another heavy star anise absinthe, it opens up quickly to allow more flavors through instead of being a wall of badine. The base alcohol seems to add a heat to an otherwise very smooth drink. There are a few flaws still but there are also some great qualities as well.
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A nice twist to a great go-to absinthe
(Updated: July 19, 2013)
Overall rating
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.
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