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Auguru

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Posts posted by Auguru


  1. ...a train ride west tomorrow...

     

    Ah! I've always wanted to take a long train ride. The closest so far was the short ride up Pike's Peak. I missed a chance to ride the train from Durango to Silverton, but the car ride that parallels it is nice. One of my favorite films ("The Grey Fox" with Richard Farnsworth) has some great train scenes. Wish it was released on DVD (or better yet, HD DVD).

     

    Have fun, T73!


  2. OK, Martin Miller gin and homemade tonic for me tonight.

     

    As for wisdom teeth... I had mine out in two passes while in college (they were partially breaking through the gums and causing extra crowding of my already overly crowded teeth). Anyway, my dentist at the time was a retired Naval dentist and figured everyone ought to be able to take dentistry without meds! Not being a military man, I demurred and went for the Novocaine (he didn't offer laughing gas, come to think of it, I don't think he even had any). The first two teeth came out without much fanfare. Clearly happy with the outcome, I went obligingly into the second round. The third came out fine, but the last wouldn't budge. The dentist had to cut a groove and use a tool to break it into two pieces. He got most of it out and I dodged the "nerve damaged rictus grin." I still have the beastly teeth in my tool box. I had lots of fun bringing them out while my kids were little and regaling them with wild dental tales! Correction: true dental stories. Now about the dreaded "dry socket"...

     

    Pan Buh, please tell me the high colonic style of painting has been abandoned...


  3. I do not have the proof everyone seeks with me right now but I will get it and post it first here and explain the truth about all this. I am an auto technician by trade but because of an injury I have begun promoting Absinth here in Canada. I know lots of people like to act like they know something who don't really know the truth and end up spreading false truths, which causes alot of harm and headaches for people that do know the truth.

     

    Promoting a product you have to investigate "after the fact" suggests your knowledge is limited. I don't mean to sound overly critical, just that you are trying to defend your position but haven't yet acquainted yourself with the details necessary to make a convincing defense. Likewise, you will probably be better positioned to promote and market your family's product after said acquaintance. Surely, it is of little value to respond to the many posts without this info. Take your time. There will no doubt be many posts in the meantime concerning the previous discussion, but carrying the discussion forward will be more meaningful when you have the additional information needed.

     

     

    When I educate people on Absinthe I tell them the truth. I tell them that what we have is a different type of Absinth. That the very old Swiss Absinthe tastes quite a bit different.

     

    I want Hill's Absinth and one other comapany that we work closely with, The Green Tree Distillery to be seperated from the rest of Czech Absinth makers. I want us to go down in history as a quality distilled Absinth and a new evolution in Absinth drinks.

     

    Case in point. Without sufficient information claims that a particular product has a particular "quality" and represents a "new evolution in Absinth" is only meaningful in context. Using the term "truth" is also sensitive since it implies the ongoing questions are accusations of untruthfulness. This usually results in "hackles being raised" and the discussion degrading into name-calling and tit-for-tat exchanges. A key complaint in the foregoing conversation is that the marketing of some Czech absinth products misrepresents the relationship between these "new" Czech products and the historic products (and those "new" products that adhere closely to the recipes and classical distillation methods used by the earliest and most successful commercial producers of the 18th, 19th and 20th centuries). If the marketing was clearly presented so the consumer understood the difference between the two, I doubt many here would object. They might not buy these "evolved" absinth products, but would not object to their presence in the marketplace either.

     

    A cooling off period seems in order. Let's see what details Tom is able to provide.

     

    As for the debate over what is and isn't legitimately labeled absinthe, I would like to suggest perusing the recent review by Lachenmeier* in the scientific journal "Critical Reviews in Food Science and Nutrition." Lachenmeier makes a very strong case for what legitimately (historically) constitutes absinthe and argues a specific marketing definition is in order.

     

    Lachenmeier, D. W., S. G. Walch, S. A. Padosch, and L. U. Kroner. 2006. Absinthe--a review. Crit Rev Food Sci Nutr 46:365-77.

     

    See also this newer paper:

     

    Lachenmeier, D. W. 2007. Assessing the authenticity of absinthe using sensory evaluation and HPTLC analysis of the bitter principle absinthin. Food Research International 40:167–175.


  4. Recalling dreams seems directly proportional to the amount of sleep I've had. Since I have gradually clipped my sleep down to 5 - 6 hrs/night, I rarely wake up in a dream cycle. If I indulge on the weekend and get 7 - 8 hrs, I have a better chance of recalling any dreams.

     

    Absinthe and/or the WS have not featured in any dreams, as I can recall anyway. Maybe the "priming" option can be attempted in the near future.

     

    As for historical dreams, I used to have awful nightmares as a kid. While in college, I tended to sleep more and had many detailed and disturbing dreams. I kept a dream journal for a while (though never set about interpreting them), but this has lapsed. Dreams of flying (and falling) were common when I was young. I don't ever remember "hitting" the ground, but do remember bouncing back out of the Grand Canyon once. :)


  5. I don't think anyone here is disparaging your families' distillation experience or the quality of the production methods. The products marketed as Czech absinth may use the highest quality ingredients, employ modern and appropriate distillation methods, and appeal to consumers that appreciate their particular tastes. The main question seems to me to be whether the production yields a product that can be sold alongside other "traditional" absinthes as an equal. The use of the term "traditional" implies a certain historicity, a history spanning some significant period of time. If I invent a product tomorrow and add the "traditional" label next year, the meaning is quite different than claiming my product conforms to "traditional" methods that were in use for more than a century and comparable to extant bottles of vintage products. Without such examples of Czech products or incontrovertible documentation (recipes, etc...), it is hard to understand the used of the term "traditional".

     

    I have no objection to innovation and am happy to see your family succeed in producing a product that appeals to consumers, wherever they are. I do object to poorly made products (I am not pointing at yours) that are marketed as "typical" or "traditional" that clearly are not, or at least bear no resemblance to historically produced products.


  6. Wormwood however is a trickier process to use to make alcohol from.

     

    I would venture to say that nary a person in the world can make alcohol from wormwood. It is a flavoring ingredient only. To make alcohol from it would require the conversion of the cellulose into a carbohydrate fermentable into alcohol. I doubt the leaves and flowers of A. absinthium have enough carbohydrate/sugar to be directly fermented into any sort of alcohol. I suspect this comment was simply a slip of the tongue. A sort of verbal typographic error.

     

    I will defer to others more knowledgeable than myself, but since absinthe was produced continuously through the 20th century in Spain and other countries while banned in other parts of Europe, it certainly wasn't "rediscovered" in the the 1990s. It was "re-marketed" in the 1990s. I suspect there are a few of the "clandestine" distillers in Switzerland who produced absinthe throughout much of the same period (though it was apparently not openly available as a commercial product) who would contend they helped keep the historical process alive.

     

    Of the historical recipes I've read (including scanned images of the originally published books), all of the recipes prominently featured anise. It would seem to me that anise, next to the lesser relative quantity of wormwood, is a key ingredient and should be obvious in the taste.

     

    I am likewise ignorant of exactly when the water dilution/louche effect became part of the historical approach to consuming absinthe, but since the flavor is so significantly enhanced by this dilution with water, I suspect it was part of the appreciation of this high proof liquor from its inception. To my understanding, it is almost a given that a product that doesn't have an appreciable louche effect does not contain enough of the key/historical ingredients to meet the definition of "absinthe". Otherwise, such products should probably be called "wormwood flavored" liquors.


  7. I got around to trying the "homemade" tonic as described in Imbibe magazine.

     

    I've gotta say it turned out great! I was never much of a gin & tonic fan, but this may make a convert out of me. I ended up ordering the cinchona bark from Penn Herb. It was somewhat coarse and had to be ground to a powder (used my coffee grinder). The other ingredients weren't too hard to find locally, but it did take a bit of searching to scare up the citric acid. My batch isn't quite as red as shown in the magazine article, but it is a kissing cousin. After dilution with the gin and soda water, it looks more reddish/golden.

     

    The only real problem is that a batch makes roughly a liter of the tonic syrup/concentrate. I've already shared about half with friends and co-workers, but am going to try freezing some to see if it will store for more than a few weeks (at refrigerator temperatures as suggested in the article).

     

    The taste is relatively strong and citrusy, so pair it with a bold gin. The article suggested No. 209, which was good. I also tried it with Sarticious and plan to go with the Tanqueray No. 10 next.


  8. As for noxious weeds, I battled spurge at our old home. A truly despicable plant. Spreads fast, crowds out the grass, and worst of all, is a skin irritant (burns, itches when you break the stems and leaves--releasing a milky fluid). I had to basically kill the entire lawn (twice!) before I got a handle on it and could replant with fescue.

     

    As for the wormwood, mine did flower last year (a little anyway), but I see no evidence of new plants derived from seeds. Maybe I cut it back before the seeds could disperse?


  9. I was surprised to see both the A. a. and Powis Castle infested with aphids a couple of weeks ago. I didn't think aphids would attack wormwood. Anyway, I didn't want to spray any sort of serious insecticide, and didn't have a handy source for ladybugs, so opted for the milder insecticidal soap. Worked like a charm and hopefully no residue after a few rains or sprinkler runs. Recommendations or alternatives to the strategy I used?


  10. I ordered mine as live plants from the good folks at Mountain Valley Growers. Unfortunately, last year I planted one of the two A. absinthium plants in a shady spot and it was outgrown by the black-eyed-susans... The other is in a nice, hot, sunny spot and looks great this year. Not knowing the best way to prune it, I took a chance and nearly cut it back to the ground late last fall. It came back gangbusters this year (I'll try to take a photo tomorrow and upload it).

     

    Oh, the Powis Castle is really beautiful, seems to accommodate even brown thumbs, and as Hissy attested, smells great when stroked. I have mine in a large container on the deck and it is likewise doing great.

     

    I would appreciate guidance on pruning/harvesting that will assure it makes it back again next year.

     

    Some areas do consider A. a. to be a noxious weed, so you won't find them in most garden centers.


  11. Have you had both before? Any idea what you'll have to pay to get an old bottle? Let us know if you are successful.

     

    I'm an absolute noob when it comes to rye whiskey. I've got a bottle of the Old Overholt and a bottle of Michter's. post-97-1179379264.jpg Since I am an absolute beginner, I have no yardstick to measure whether the new versus old Overholt is better at constructing a Sazerac. Do you have favorites among the readily available rye whiskeys? Further, what brands of absinthe are preferred in a Sazerac?

     

    All responses welcome, of course.

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