Jump to content
shinsain

Another question...about LeMercier Amer

Recommended Posts

Ok, so obviously my Christmas order arrived today because I'm asking questions, right?

 

As noted in the other thread, I received a bottle of LeMercier Amer in the order. My problem is that BOTH my wife and I noted that it tasted like "plastic."

 

Now, normally I'd chalk this up to a weird batch, but from knowledge of distillation (not home, nor anything illegal, for that matter) I know that plastic is *never* to be used in distillation, especially professional. Now, it is common for people (where it's legal) who distill at home to use plastic in their stills, but this is a well-known no-no for professionals.

 

So, my question is this: has anyone ever run into "plastic" tasting commercial offerings? If so, is this something the distiller should be notified of? This can be an actual health risk if plastic is actually being used in the distilling process...so if it's not (assuming the pros know what they're doing) what the heck could give this taste?

 

Aaron

 

Hiram, et al.: feel free to edit if/when/where needed. I'm not sure my wording is strictly correct here.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Wasn't it Pensieve who described a plastic taste to blanche absinthes?

I've heard that comment a couple of times. Could be a genetic thing, like the way some people think the FG tastes like sweaty gym socks.

Edited by Wild Bill Turkey

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Bill, it was her. But I thought it was in reference to CLB, not specifically "blanche" absinthes???

 

As it stands, I have had HG's which have had plastic used in their distillation and it tastes like this to me. Like some part of wherever LeMercier's alembic is, is plastic? A line somewhere, or something -- something that comes in contact with the alcohol.

 

I just don't get it. I know that our tastes vary quite a bit, but this tastes very distinctly like some kind of mishap to me, which is why I ask.

 

Aaron

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Well, I don't know what sweaty gym socks taste like but my FG right now tastes pretty damn good! Maybe I just like sweaty gym socks? Jeez, I hope not! :puke:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I got a flask-size bottle of the LeMercier Amer a couple of months back, and never opened it. This is making me want to try it, to see if I notice what you mean.

Well, I know it seems a little odd, but could you?

 

I'm telling you I can pick out the difference between a weird herb or two and the *actual* taste of plastic...

 

I wonder if it has to do with their corks? Their bottles all come with those funny little T corks that aren't actually cork, they're some kind of ruberized stuff.

 

Aaron

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The way some of the herbs can mingle together will give one different tastes on their palate. I think it was the hyssop that some people perceive as a plastic taste, not sure though I'll have to check my old notes on that.

 

As for using plastic components in distillation?

That is completely foolish and should never be done.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

And that's my point, there should be NO plastic anywhere near a still, especially in a professional operation. It is a common newbie mistake to use plastic parts in making a personal still (again where this is legal) but the thought that for some reason LeMercier has plastic anywhere near an absinthe alembic had (has) me fairly disturbed.

 

I concur that the hyssop is what most people find "plastic" in some blanches. I find it more milky and thick in things like the CLB, but have had other HG blanches which were very light on the hyssop (as CLB is generally very heavy) and when it mingles with fennel I believe that is the flavor that comes about.

 

On that note, however, the LeMercier Amer is not a blanche...and I've never encountered a plastic taste in a verte. So, it seems off to me.

 

Aaron

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It's not a blanche, but a very poorly colored verte,

also they see fit to add wormwood oil to the finished product

to boost the thujone level.

That could be another reason you are picking up "off" tastes.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
It's not a blanche, but a very poorly colored verte,

also they see fit to add wormwood oil to the finished product

to boost the thujone level.

That could be another reason you are picking up "off" tastes.

Yes, it is a poorly colored verte, as is their LeMercier 72.

 

I was not aware that they added wormwood oil either. Had I, I wouldn't have picked it up. Also, that probably explains any weird tastes as well, as you noted. I can see that there are obviously other makers more worthy of my hard earned money, thanks.

 

Aaron

Edited by shinsain

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It was me that said things taste plastic, I think that all I noticed it in were blanches. It's not a very good description, I just think that it tastes like new plastic smells, if that makes sense. In some thread somewhere there is a list of what I have tasted it in, and not. I recently came across some interesting samples that I think may have narrowed it down to a few things....of course I can't bring to mind what they are right now, but I'm sure Shai can. :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Shinsain, are picking up a "hint" of plastic, or is it overwhelming?

 

About a month ago a friend got an absolutely foul and undrinkable bottle of Eichelberg, probably his 5th or 6th bottle in the last year, so it was quite a surprise. The taste could've been described as contaminated, rotten plastic/adhesive. He checked with the seller (I think it was LDF, but it could've been Markus) who was very helpful. They reported no other complaints, but immediately credited his account for that bottle, probably in part due his order history.

 

They thought it could be the cork, (they do appear to be two parts glued together). He transferred the Eich to an empty bottle, and left it uncorked for a little while. He placed the suspect cork in another cleaned out empty Eich bottle, and let it sit for a day or so. Well...the formerly clean bottle took on the smell, and the aired-out Eich is fine.

 

Just an idea.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Yes, a wonderful gent or two are helping us figure out the source. We have it drastically narrowed down.

 

I don't smell or taste it but even though we still use the term "plastic" it is really closer to the petrolium smell of new plastic. Pensieve reported it in only one vert and that was a Pacifique so it was deffinately not a quality problem. Unfortunately we do not have a nice big bottle to experiment with. Oh yeah, she also noticed it in Lune Verte.

 

She did not notice it in CLB or Kallnacher but in nearly every other Blanche.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Speaking of this...

 

I posted in another thread that I had figured out that it was the T cork afterall. They (LeMercier) use a funny little ruberized (or maybe some kind of plastic??) kind of T cork, not a traditional cork. I took the cork out for a while and let the absinthe breath and the longer I let it sit, the better it tasted. After I sealed it back up for transport and opened it again at home, the plastic taste was back.

 

Good going LeMercier.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Speaking of this...

 

I posted in another thread that I had figured out that it was the T cork afterall. They (LeMercier) use a funny little ruberized (or maybe some kind of plastic??) kind of T cork, not a traditional cork. I took the cork out for a while and let the absinthe breath and the longer I let it sit, the better it tasted. After I sealed it back up for transport and opened it again at home, the plastic taste was back.

 

Good going LeMercier.

 

 

Just wanted to say, my very first bottle of absinthe (last month) was Lemercier Amer and I had no issue with plastic smell or taste. I actually really liked the stuff, I can't wait to try something of better quality, though. Sorry yours ended up the way it did. Where did ya order it from, outta curiosity? Mine was from The Frenchman

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

My bottle of Lamercier Amer didn't seem to have that taste, although it is a bitter, I think

you have to account for that fact. As others have said, it might be attributed to the hyssop and most

likely not a contaminate occuring during distillation. I think my Lamercier is one of the better

Absinthes I personally have tasted so far.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Huh?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I don't normally associate hyssop with honeyed or floral nuances, but flavor interpretation is such an individuated experience that I wouldn't rule out that possibility.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Is that the floral, honey flavor I pick up in the CLB?

It seems I read ClB uses Sweet Fennel instead of Florence Fennel. I think that might be part of its unique flavor. Hyssop has more of an earthy flavor to me.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...

×