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Absinthe: What's in a name?

Absinthe: What's in a name?  

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In my VERY limited experience I believe that it is important for the TTB to step up to the plate and decide what absinthe is in the US.

 

For the general public what's on the label is what's in the bottle. You and I may know better, that's why "Would you buy absinthe without the word 'absinthe' on the label?" received so many votes on this forum. The problem is that the general public wouldn't know it is supposed to be absinthe if it isn't on the label.

 

More importantly, IMHO, is the issue of mis-identification of non-absinthe spirits by using the same "code words" absinthe distillers use to get around the lack of a definition. While this certainly applies to some of the bitter bombs from the Czech Republic it may also be used by people who make completely unrelated spirits.

 

As others have pointed out, within the absinthe family the chaff will eventually be willowed but unless you have a definition this process becomes almost impossible.

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Hmm, interesting. Considering what comes out of the average stranger's mouth when I mention "absinthe", it might be alright if we toy with the name a bit. It might behoove the absinthe movement in general not to have thrill-seekers clamoring to buy absinthe, setting their frat houses on fire and setting back our progress. Maybe it's OK to be more subtle. If it means good absinthe on the shelves, I don't care what you call it. OK I care, but I'm more concerned about the quality than the name.

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