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Everything posted by britgeekgrrl

  1. Oh, thank God. That's MUCH better pic than the one over on Getty Images *shudder* The St. George Tactical Alcohol Consumption Squad is, well... it's an excuse to dress up in costume and drink good booze, really. The emphasis is on tactical consumption, rather than bulk intake, you see... The joke started when St. G's did the "Special Forces" shirt (which you can see on Jennifer, the gal on the left) and Kevin offered to design a uniform to go with it. Lance gave Kevin the okay to use the St. G's logo for a unit patch and the whole thing just snowballed from there. As the founding member of the absinthe branch of the TAC, I had to attend the release-day shenanigans, of course. St. George sold 1800 bottles out of the distillery, and sent another 1800 to distributors. They're already backordered with said distributors, and I believe the next production run will be in January (but I don't know what the official word is...) - Johanna
  2. Welcome back, Joseph! For what it's worth, I got this from the folks at St. G's re: ingredients in general: [Absinthe Verte} uses Grande Wormwood or Artemisia Absinthium. And Star Anise, Mint, Lemon Balm, Hyssop, Meadowsweet, Basil, Fennel, Tarragon & Stinging Nettles. With a Brandy base. And, if I had to guess - and I am - there's probably no rabbinical supervision going on but, heck, I'll bring it up when I stop by the tasting room next week. - Johanna
  3. I asked the St. G staff about the machinations required to sell through their tasting room and all I understood of the answer was "blahblahblah.... really expensive bond required" and "if you buy Hangar One, we have to run the purchase through *this* credit card machine and if you buy anything else, we have to ring it up separately on *this other* machine". As I say, it's something to do with the nature of the bond that must be posted in order to sell in the vicinity of the distillery (ie, a very expensive one) which St. G's couldn't afford to do themselves, directly, but the owners of Hangar One (St. G produces Hangar One for them, but it's a separate corporate entity) *could* afford to post, so they did, but there's still weirdness about how the product is sold. It's very confusing. But as long as I can get the yummies, I really don't mind having to run multiple transactions... I just buy the stuff and enjoy it. The rest is gravy. - Johanna
  4. I'm sure one of us will pass that along to the staff on 12/21. They're keen on making sales, they is. - Johanna
  5. Seconded! Plus he and Jorg are darned nice guys to boot and I *barely* resent the hoover-job that gets done to my bank account every time I swing past the hangar. See you at the tasting room on the 21st, then? I'm dashing down to make my first purchase as soon as my abinsthe-minded pals get off work for the day... - Johanna
  6. *bounces happily* I'm so excited! I was allowed a taste of the distiller's proof, a few weeks ago, but I had to swear to silence until the release was approved by the US gov't. For what it's worth, I've blogged about it here. I'll post my 'official' review on 12/21, but the stuff's a winner, folks, trust me on this. *happyabsinthedance* - Johanna
  7. As I've only got a few minutes, you'll be spared my usual blather. About three weeks ago, I got my hands on the latest eau de vie from St. George's Spirits in Alameda, CA. Basil. Yes, really. The herb, not the grumpy hotel owner in Torquay. (I can't imagine he'd taste very good.) It's a heck of a departure from St. G's other eaux (cherry, pear, grape, raspberry) but damn me if it doesn't work. The stuff is indescribably scrumptious and - go figure - it left me craving caprese for hours. Absinthe aside, I'm not usually a fan of 'herbal' liqueurs. I'm usually one for the silly, fruity things, but once again, St. G's has convinced me to change my opinon. I picked up a bottle after my first tasting, and I think it's going to have as brief a shelf life as most of the other things I pick up from St George's. Being an eau de vie, it should be mentioned that this stuff kicks like a mule. I forget the exact ABV, but it should be imbibed with a degree of caution. Even more so if you happen to be at the St. G open house and trustingly accept a thimbleful of something that's just come out of the still. YOW. The alcohol content was so high I never had a chance to swallow it - it just evaporated on my tongue and my head was full of basil-scented goodness... but that's another story... A pal of mine came up with an interesting recipe with it, which I leave here for your consideration. He calls it a basil mojito: 1/2 lime 1/2 tsp turbinado (or brown) sugar 2 oz basil eau de vie soda Squeeze the half lime into the bottom of a pint glass and drop it in. Add the sugar and muddle. Add the basil eau de vie and ice. Transfer between the pint glass and the serving glass to mix. Top up with soda and transfer to the serving glass one last time. Cheers, - Johanna
  8. (a thousand pardons, I've been away for a while - hubby + major sugery = not much time for the internet) The new site looks really good - although, er, the layout is just a tiny bit crowded, to me. But that's just me. Ignore me. Really, overall, it's fabulous. And I'll be glad to shovel a few bucks into the Keep Hiram in pre-ban bandwidth fund. - Johanna
  9. I must have ordered the last bottle then (I placed an order early Sat. morning and it went through) so I'm sorry about that! (but kinda glad that I'm getting some, so I'm not feeling *very* guilty, no...) - Johanna
  10. Dammit guys, I'm getting drool on my keyboard! - Johanna
  11. I learned my lesson over on the assorted T&T threads. - Johanna
  12. (Hooray! someone got the joke!) But, ow, are you trying to kill me via alcohol poisoning? Between drinks like that and my pal who likes to pour "Expanding Cosmo(s)" down me at parties (short version: 4 oz of various vodkas) I'm amazed I have anything resembling a liver left! Damn booze, for being so tasty, anyways... - Johanna PS. if it wasn't for the fact that a local sci-fi/fantasy con OWNS me the same weekend as the next get-together, me and my liver would be taking my chances with you lot, I assure you. (edited for clarity)
  13. Oh, don't get me wrong. I'll be buying a bottle of the stuff - possibly several - just to support the notion of US-legal absinthe. Doesn't mean I can't still wince at cookie-crumb-coated "martinis", tho'. - Johanna
  14. That's what kinda worried me about that particular drink. Three of those and I'd be a Dorothy Parker epigram - or in hospital. And I think Red Bull is just plain unpleasant, no matter what you mix it with... :-P Of course, I'm still going to buy a bottle of Lucid when it hits the market, don't get me wrong, there. But I doubt I'll be partaking of any of those silly recipes... - Johanna
  15. If you guys are vouching for the seller, that's enough for me. Yay for small-ish communities for this sort of thing. And yeah, I'm sure that ebay is riddled with forgeries and foolishness, hence my making the post here. Alas, it's not like I can afford to get the whole slew (I've got sci-fi whackiness to pay for this month) but I think the budget can stretch to one of 'em - assuming y'all haven't beaten me to 'em. - Johanna PS - despite my mad, desperate desire to splurge, I've treated myself to *one* spoon. Every collection starts somewhere, right?
  16. I was cheerfully cruising ebay, as is my wont, and came across the following: "vintage" absinthe spoons. I don't know enough to tell the real deal from an enthusiastically battered modern replica. I don't suppose y'all would be willing to cast your eyeballs over the offerings and let me know if a) any of them are worth bidding on and what a person can look out for to tell genuine vintage from merely 'five years old but beaten up'? Thanks! - Johanna
  17. Oh dear god... I know they've got to push the product, but I just took a look at the Lucid Cocktail Recipe Page. "Absinthe" and "shooters" shouldn't go in the same sentence. Indeed, it's just my humble opinion, but a lot of those proposed concoctions look, um, vile. - Johanna
  18. Don't feel bad - you're not the only one. I still have only the vaguest of ideas how to untangle the flavors in absinthe - and I've given thought to the approach mentioned by the OP, of getting some (fresh) herb samples together, just to better understand the single notes. So I'm a cheerfully bourgeois absinthe drinker. I don't worry too much about what's what, just whether or not I like it. Further enlightmentment will, I hope, come in time. - Johanna
  19. I must admit, this thread - especially Brooks' excellent report - has modified my opinion from 'frankly skeptical' to 'cautiously optimistic'. Hooray! Now, if I could just get my hands on a bottle before Memorial Day Weekend... I'm going for the fourth wormwood leaf cluster on my absinthe evangelist ribbon and having that on hand would be - to mix the metaphor - a feather in my cap. *eyeballs the not-at-all-underground railway meaningfully* - Johanna
  20. And thirded. Just last night, I treated myself to a small measure of what's left of my Artisinale (almost gone, *sob*), and the bustling around the kitchen, laying out the accoutrements and just generally getting ready is, indeed, part of the pleasure of the drink. Modern life doesn't have much truck with ritualistic, small-scale self indulgences, so I think we should make an effort to maintain the ones that remain. On a related note, to mention a horribly bourgeois way of pouring one's ice water, particularly if one doesn't trust one's steadiness of hand with a wide-mouthed carafe: I'd like to mention that I've had great success creating a very slow pour when I've transferred a measure of ice water into a small paper "dixie" cup, and then creased the rim of it to create a point. A very thin trickle can result - most satisfying when one wants the chance to watch the louche. The above was an emergency measure when an impromptu absinthe-tasting broke out at a party I happened to be at, as it allowed me the freedom of movement to hold the glass (and the cup) above the table every now and then so that the curious attendees got a good view as I poured. (hold on, I think I have a picture of what I'm trying to describe... here. Unfortunately, the photog cut the absinthe glass out of the frame, but you can see what I'm trying to describe with the cup and the results of same.) It's a technique I've used ever since if I don't have a fountain, to hand. Dixie cups don't look very nice, but they're cheap and easy to handle - I *still* don't have the knack of making a tidy, narrow pour from a wide-brimmed carafe, and my 'fountain' is such that there's no point in filling it up unless I'm planning to prepare several glasses... - Johanna (edited for awful spelling)
  21. Apropos of nothing - although it's about vodka - I just got my hands on St. George Spirits' second offering in their "alchemy" series of vodkas infused with Weird Stuff. Chipotle infused vodka. I'd tried one pepper vodka in the past (Absolut) and was a bit underwhelmed by it, go figure. However, as I've enjoyed almost everything St. George produces, I approached their product with a more open mind. Besides, I was still seething about missing the production run of the wasabi-infused vodka, which was insanely great stuff. The chipotle infusion is good. The flavor of the vodka is more complex than expected - several varieties of pepper were used in the infusion - and the heat is very, very sneaky. At first it's "Okay, this is spicy but not too...hang on... it's getting warmer...alright, that's still pretty good - YOW!" But it doesn't make you want to rip your tongue out and put it in the freezer, or anything - well, you might want to do that for entirely other reasons, but I don't think this is the place to share such notions... Now I'm trying to figure out what to use it in other than a bloody mary. I'm not a vast fan of tomatoes, so I've got some research to do. I suspect it might be a dandy ingredient in some pasta sauce - although given the limited run (240 bottles) I'll probably use it quite sparingly. - Johanna
  22. Indeed, and this is why I come to y'all for the One True Way (or, er, something like it) when I'm confused. - Johanna
  23. Earlier today, I was happily trying a chipotle-infused vodka at St. George Spirits in Alameda, CA, and the staff, upon overhearing my (inevitable) mention of absinthe, said "Oh, did you hear the news? The law about absinthe distribution is changing. It's going to be legal to distribute the stuff in the USA again. Congress made a decision earlier this week." Once I got the vodka out of my sinuses (and believe me, that chipotle stuff lingers) my response was something along the lines of "Buh?" Did I miss a memo, or are the staff at my favorite distillery high as kites? Given how they were cheerfully discussing how the (European) owner of the business was currently doing some research and they were seriously considering offering a house-brand absinthe within 6 - 12 months, they seemed quite certain that they had the right end of the stick. But I'm a skeptical cuss. For all I know, the staff were pulling my leg - I'm pretty easy to fool, not being the most perceptive of lasses, but the staff did, indeed, seem quite serious. So, er, does anyone have anything on this? A quick googling suggests that, alas, the folks at St. G's are dreaming - or have perhaps misunderstood this "Lucid" stuff I've read about, but, as I say, they're usually quite smart and seemed quite certain... Edited to add: the more reading I do, the more I think the St. G staff are thinking of the Lucid situation/precedent. I've dropped a line to 'em to ask for clarification on their opining/stance/intentions - further bulletins as events warrant. - Johanna
  24. My dear mother used to say that the perfect martini was a swig of gin straight from the bottle, but we have to pretend to be more civilized than that. Funny lady, my mom... - Johanna
  25. Somehow, I became the absinthe expert over my extended social circle. This says something about the general ignorance level amongst (most of) my friends, 'cause otherwise, they'd know better. A friend-of-a-friend (in the US) is departing for Prague on Friday, and would like to know if anyone could offer recommendations for storefronts to visit in order to pick up a bottle or two of absinthe. The guy is, honestly, exceedingly uneducated about absinthe, but he's willing to learn, and I've already steered him away from KoS and anything spelled 'absinth' so that's a good start. Anyhoo, if this chap doesn't learn of anywhere better to go (unfortunately, I don't know *where* in Prague he'll be) he's going to try buying it at the airport - ayie! He's going to be spending some time in Austria and Frankfurt, as well, but again, I don't know in which neighborhoods. Help save a noob from crapsinthe! Thanks, all. - Johanna