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About bentleye

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  1. I like the absinthe matrix on this site. I knew by trial and error how much water I liked in different absinthes. The matrix helped me figure out that I tend to like absinthe diluted down to 16 to 19 per cent alcohol, the strength of a fortified wine. That opens up the flavor, but retains a little alcohol edge. With Kübler, it needs to be on the high end or higher, With something like Meadow of Love it can be on the low end, strength wise. But that's just me and one of the great things about absinthe. You can make it to your liking,any way you want, especially if you don't mind being considered odd.
  2. Kübler does not seem to support higher dilutions very well. I drink it at 1.5 to 1. Sugar actually creates some contrast that helps me also distinguish some bitterness. Other absinthe - and I just opened a bottle of Meadow of Love, seem to benefit from higher dilutions. The Meadow of love really was good at 2 to 1 and I think it will open up even more at 3 or 4 to 1.
  3. What is considered the normal range of dilution? With a more complex absinthe how much water is necessary to open up a more complex absinthe?
  4. I understand the appeal. Lately I've been drinking Lucid and Kübler while waiting for a couple bottles of Delaware Phoenix from Catskill. I like them at about 1.5 parts water to 1 part absinthe so the flavor is still pretty concentrated. It is all a matter of taste, and of course I was drinking Raki and Ouzo and Sambuca and Pastis a long time before I ever tasted Absinthe.
  5. On the website it says "we perform a secondary infusion of mint, tarragon, opal basil, lemon balm, hyssop, meadowsweet, and stinging nettles." Opal basil and tarragon might add up to something reminiscent of cinnamon. In any case they are strongly flavored herbs that seem to me to be inappropriate in traditional absinthe, and not an appealing innovation. Just my opinion. I know there are plenty of people who like it and taste is an individual thing.
  6. I don't like St. George. I'm not saying that it is bad. I'm only saying that I don't like it. I returned a bottle to Bevmo and brought home a Kübler in its place. I think Kübler is reasonably good and reasonably priced. But St. George has an overpowering bouquet, to me, of artificial cinnamon. It is very distracting, such that I can't enjoy it. Maybe it is good. But to me it is not absinthe. Maybe just a matter of expectation. It is like picking up orange juice thinking it is milk. Both are good. But it is jarring to get orange juice when you expect milk. Maybe if I were given it as a non absinthe beverage, I'd appreciate it for itself. But I doubt it. I would not recommend it to any person just discovering absinthe.
  7. I was in France a couple of years ago doing the tourist thing. We were at the gift shop at the catacombs where I saw a bottle of something called Absinthe. Pandor was the brand. The bottle had a really cool skull on the label. It brought out memories of things I'd heard and read back in the 70s when I was a teenager. Those things were mythology of course. I bought the bottle and "smuggled" it back to the US. Then I looked up information about Absinthe on line. I quickly found out that what I had was high proof distilled Alcohol much closer to vodka then Absinthe. The happy ending was that I ended up buying a bottle of La Clandestine and Berthe de Joux. That was a revelation. From that day to this, I've been enjoying Absinthe.
  8. Newport Farms in Ocean Beach at Newport and Cable has a bunch of absinthes. That place used to be a very ordinary beach liquor store, but the new owner stocks a huge selection of things. They have a bunch I don't recognize, as well Lucid, Kübler, Mansinthe, Abyss, Pernod absinthe, Mata Hari and a month or so ago I saw Vieux Carre, but it was not there today. I get the feeling that the owner is trying to stock a wide variety but does not know much about absinthe. Maybe I should introduce him to this site. I went to the gran tapa in the gaslamp once. They insist on lighting the sugar cube and using warmish water to louche. I don't recommend.
  9. This is true. I've even drunk both of them straight and they are good. I could see sipping them like cognac or calvados. I also found I was using less and less sugar until just the last few days I have used no sugar. Both my absinthes are surprisingly sweet. It is not like sugar sweetness. It seems like something else. Maybe the anise oil has a kind of sweetness. That would be interesting as I've drunk other anise beverages like raki, ouzo, sambuca, and pastis. They have sugar, which masks any other sweetness. But presumably the absinthe has no sugar. It lets the other sweetness shine through. It is a nice mild sweetness that is a counterpoint to the bitterness without obscuring the bitterness.
  10. Thanks everyone for the welcome. I do need to experiment with different water ratios. I've kind of been going between 3 and 4 to 1. I did about 5 to 1 on Blanchette the other day. I mixed up three ounces of Blanchette, about a half teaspoon of sugar, 12 ounces of very cold water and some ice in a thermos. I took it to the beach and had a most pleasant afternoon sitting in the warm sunshine and sipping absinthe. Best wishes to all.
  11. Hi. My name is David. I live in San Diego, CA. For me, absinthe mythology was the initial draw. It was associated in my mind with creative minds of the 19th century, and drug effects beyond alcohol. This was a passive impression, nothing I ever thought about or talked about until this past March, when I was in France. I was looking at spirits in a grocery store, and I spotted a bottle of absinthe that just clicked right in with what I "knew" about absinthe. The bottle was black and it had a skull on the label. I bought thinking it was really cool and I'd have to smuggle it back to the US because it had to be illegal. What a conversation piece. That absinthe was Pandor. Unfortunately it was not confiscated by customs. It is basically just strong vodka with a bitter after taste. It is garbage:no louche, no anise, no fennel. Its only value is that it caused me to research absinthe. That is how I came across this site with all the detailed reviews, informative discussions, and links to articles. I ended up trying Kübler locally at a bar and enjoying it. After that, I ordered a bottle of Berthe de Joux and a bottle of Blanchette, based on the reviews, from Absinthe Classics. These are even better than the Kübler. Right now I'm thinking that the Blanchette is the best one, but I'm not feeling any pressure to decide. My thanks to everyone here who contributed here to absinthe education. Best wishes.