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Angelique and Aa in Coloration  

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Ow, I'm not.

 

Guess I'm guilty of bein' too damn predictable. I'll be sure to work on that… bit rusty as you can imagine.

Being sincere can be dull. The hypocrites get all the action.

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I don't think anyone's questioning Bugnon's ability to distill properly.

If that's what's being implied.

That kind of depends on your definition. If you mean "clean", then his distillates are not that proper. If you like La Bleue style absinthe, then it's properly distilled according to that tradition.

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Thanks for all your comments so far.

 

Claude-Alain's aim with Angélique was NOT to create just another "me too" verte, or to produce a verte that people who already like La Clandestine would switch to. One can easily drink La Clandestine as an aperitif or at almost any time of day, without sugar and with only 3 parts of water. As many have said here, it's a great drink for people starting their absinthe journey; but it's obvious that many seasoned drinkers love it too.

 

Angélique has a more pronounced wormwood taste (as well as angelica from the root, Hiram) to appeal to those people who prefer that to a more dominant anise taste. And to appeal to those who like to have different types of absinthes at different times. Pan Buh, Claude-Alain DOES like Angélique, especially in the evenings and with a cigar, while he might prefer La Clandestine before dinner (precisely the time we were sharing Angélique with you).

 

I can assure you that he's not going to name his new absinthe after his daughter if he finds it too bitter! And, like his daughter, some people find that Angélique has a more "devilish" or "impish" side: hence the label that Helfrich likes.

 

I wasn't with Hartsmar and Helfrich when they drank Angélique, and don't know how they drank it. It's 72% abv, so it needs more fresh water than one would add to a 53% Clandestine. And personally I would add the water over sugar with Angélique.

 

Zzz, I think you misinterpreted a conversation on the Lounge: the absinthe that was discussed a year ago was the Gothica (nothing to do with us, but the conversations merged so you thought they were referring to Angélique). Although Claude-Alain has been working on Angélique for some time, none of it was released until 3/4 months ago. Helfrich and Getz tasted the same Angélique that you all had at Dr. Cocktail's on Saturday: the only differences were that theirs was VERY fresh (a day or so old), and I'm sure, from your photos, that you all drank yours with fresh water, and maybe, with sugar too.

 

I'd be interested to hear the views of the others who tasted Angélique at Dr. Cocktail's on Saturday.

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Good point Alan, especially with the division: la bleue sans sucre, less water/verte avec, more water.

 

Gee, Helfrich, you taste a little bitter.

 

Have you drunk him? (Sorry, I had to). :devil:

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My apologies, I was a bit sloppy with my wording. I didn't mean to say that Bugnon doesn't like or drink his own product. All I can vouch for is that I heard him make a comment to the effect that it was more bitter than he, and the locals, were used to or preferred. It struck me as being apologetic in tone. It certainly was not a rousing endorsement of his own product, to my ears. In fact, it unnerved me a bit to hear him volunteering this information, and so it came back a little more strongly worded in my iteration of it here. But that's my gloss, not Bugnon's own words. Again, let me say that I did enjoy it. I wasn't in critical tasting mode, but if it had tasted "horribly bitter" I would have noticed and noted it. It was a real surprise and took me off guard. I am truly quite eager to give it another try in more relaxed circumstances.

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I wasn't with Hartsmar and Helfrich when they drank Angélique, and don't know how they drank it. It's 72% abv, so it needs more fresh water than one would add to a 53% Clandestine. And personally I would add the water over sugar with Angélique.

 

I am quite accustomed to how an absinthe develops and varies under various amounts of water. I've had a drink or two in my days... ;)

 

Now, my personal opinion is that if you need to add sugar to an absinthe in order to make it palatable and to take away any form of "excessive" bitterness, there's something wrong with it. I'm not saying the Angelique was undrinkable but the dry bitterness from macerated wormwood did go through and it did stick around for a long time. It was not a good bitterness. He could very well have made a verte with all the qualities he wanted without that last thing. The rest of the drink seems very pleasant underneath all that.

Constructive criticism.

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If Bugnon would use decent colouring herbs, he would probably create a potable and unique Verte, based on a La Bleue-like distillate, that would beat all the A.a. bungle in Val-de-Travers. The compulsive replacement of pontica by A.a. does not make any sense. It's delusional.

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I tried a bottle about a month or so ago, and did not find it in the least bit bitter - and we drank the whole bottle, so I got some good tasting in. I also tried some from a different bottle at Doc's the other night, and found that bottle very enjoyable also, and not the least bit bitter.

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I had a glass of the Angelique at Doc's Saturday night and I liked it. I am anything but an expert but I did not find it overly bitter at all; I thought it had a nice light flavor, pretty refreshing and good.

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If he's coloring with A.a., that's no bueno.

You're speaking of the craft again and you were probably right from the very start.

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Yeah, and there are different types of bittnerness, it seems. It can be pleasant or rancid. Crisp or musty. It depends on the rest of the players. Unbalanced bitterness is a bad thing, but a lingering bitterness in a well-boqueted absinthe is great, for me.

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Dakini is right as usual and it's not just bitterness. It's all about the individual palate and thankfully we have several quality absinthes to choose from. No offense but Helfrich absinthe has a musty quality (to me) that I didn't find appealing, however, Maggie has listed it at times in her top five favorites. Different people/different taste. Considering those that thought it bitter had a very fresh glass and those that did not think it bitter had a glass with a little age to it is also reasonable. Age is absinthe's friend.

 

Being sincere can be dull. The hypocrites get all the action.

Not where I hang out. ;) Sincerity is a virtue. End of story.

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It does seem unfortunate to me that a distinguishing characteristic of many a "Bohemian-style absinth" is now being employed by Swiss absinthe distillers. It erodes what could have been included in a legal, or even industry, or at the very least common-usage, definition.

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The first time I tried Angelique I thought it was funky and weird, but I liked it's uniqueness. Since then I've grown to appreciate that uniqueness even more. I also appreciate the fact that from all the other absinthes I've tried the Angelique doesn't taste like any of the others. I also like how it dries my mouth out and none of the others I've tried do that. I like it, and will order more when the time for the next big order arrives.

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Dakini is right as usual and it's not just bitterness. It's all about the individual palate ... Different people/different taste. Considering those that thought it bitter had a very fresh glass and those that did not think it bitter had a glass with a little age to it is also reasonable. Age is absinthe's friend.

Different tastes and slightly different ages. Also very different circumstances. Most of the members who have drunk Angélique did so at home or at Dr. Cocktail's. Helfrich tried Angélique at a morning street market JUST AFTER BREAKFAST (his words on Fee Verte). Of course as an expert he will make allowances for that but I'm not sure that is a good time to be assessing anything alcoholic (wine tasting is recommended c. 3 hours after breakfast).

I'm very, very curious about this absinthe. Any chance of it ending up at FSC, Alan?

You know me, Stomp. Get the Canadians interested and then starve them! With all these absinthes coming into the USA, don't you think it's time to emigrate? Seriously, we'll talk to Federico about this in a few weeks' time.

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I have some of the pre-release and thought it was decent. There was a quality about it I couldn't put my finger/nose/taste on. I had a small sample a month later and it had smoothed some. I guess it's about time to give it another test drive. Perhaps this evening. :)

 

Of the final product, I have none to compare.

 

:cheers:

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One thing I've noticed is that different people have different sensitivities to bitterness.

 

Perhaps that's our issue here?

As the sensory impressions related to this product appear to diverge enormously, something like that might well be the issue. Sensitivity to bitterness depends on a genetic predisposition. PTC (phenylthiocarbamide) is a classic example but it also goes for other bitter compounds like quinine or irritating compounds like capsaicin, so probably also for other bitter principles like absinthin.

 

Here's a link for science nerds: Diverse tastes: Genetics of sweet and bitter perception (It doesn't lead to the Lounge.)

 

I find it striking that I'm not oversensitive to bitter at all, though. I don't find the Epoque disturbingly bitter, for instance. Taste is weird.

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Dakini is right as usual

 

Whoa, T73! That's going a bit too far.

 

 

I also appreciate the fact that from all the other absinthes I've tried the Angelique doesn't taste like any of the others.

 

 

IMHO, this is a quality we should be encouraging more from the distillers instead of wanting everything to taste the same.

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Unique tastes are a good thing. My concern here is using a process that can be directly likened to the "brown bits" in a bottle of KoS. Some macerater is going to make the argument that they are just doing the same thing that those Swiss chaps are doing (who, in fact, it seems borrowed the idea from their long-standing tradition) and that it proves that their product is every bit as valid to be called absinth(e) as the Swiss stuff is. Historically speaking, this could be a very bad development.

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No offense but Helfrich absinthe has a musty quality (to me) that I didn't find appealing, however, Maggie has listed it at times in her top five favorites.

That absinthe is produced by a passionate boozer who makes what he likes to drink himself. Criticism can hardly be offensive and is always welcome.

 

It's interesting that you find it musty as I rather find it a bit too clean myself.

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Oh goody! I'll try the Helfrich and Angelique side by side this evening. Sure is going to feel like a long day.

 

:)

 

 

Edit: I guess I'm in the "I like it a bit bitter" group although it doesn't seem that way to me. Most come over as sweet at first and then settle to their subtleties. *shrug*

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It's interesting that you find it musty as I rather find it a bit too clean myself.

"Musty" is a poor word choice on my part. If there was indeed a musty quality to it, Maggie wouldn't have touched it with a ten foot absinthe spoon but as I said, it's one of her favorites. I'm sure I was responding to your particular combination of herbs. Or maybe it was an external factor affecting my perception. :g:

 

There's no question Helfrich absinthe is a high quality beverage made in a labor of love. I'll join OMG this evening, try another glass and see if my initial reaction holds true or was a victim of a bad day or bad chef (our family cook sucks). Unfortunately, there's no way to get a glass of Angelique here by evening. Pity.

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