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Absinthe Ordinaire Liqueur

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Notice it at my local store when making a delivery. $27. 46% ABV. FD&C colors blue and yellow.

 

I almost bought it, but it was the only one they had. Just providing a starter thread for it. :)

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Wow!! Properly labeled! That's kind of interesting. It's not masquerading as anything that it's not. It clearly labels itself as ordinaire and even more clearly labels itself as a liqueur.

 

I would have bought it, Cheryl!

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Im sure this will be pushed heavily in my area just like Absente and Grande Absente :( since Crillion Importers is based here and the two other products are just about everywhere here unfortunatly. I should tell the owner to get some real shit here, hell I should have done it earlier since I know his son....

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Out here in So Cal, I was at Alpine Village for Oktoberfest. and they had the Ordinaire at the German deli. Naturally I had to get a bottle. Expect reviews next month since Misanthrope will be busy heasing through Halloween.

 

-- T

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Eagerly awaiting you review Timothy B.

 

I had seen it at one of my go to joints, inspected it and passed, though I was at least mildly intrigued. A friend of mine had just recently gotten back from a short trip to Estes Park, and mentioned seeing & trying this. He seems to like it, but keep in mind that this guy likes Grande Absente, and LTV. Now, my friend has been educated thanks to WS members, but he still prefers his Kübler & that other stuff. I've given him Belle Amie, Jade PF, Obsello, Walton Waters, & Leopold Brothers. The problem, in my mind, is that we haven't done a side by side comparison. In his defense, while he was in desert shield/storm he was forced to take an experimental "anti-nerve agent" that messed him, and many others, up pretty bad. All I'm saying is that there is a market for crap and if this is crap,(& I'm not saying that it is, because I have not tried it.) the price will surely bring consumers who are interested in, or curious about absinthe to the counter with a bottle.

 

While it's not necessarily misleading on the label, if it is bottled with added sugar, it is still a liqueur and not absinthe.

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I picked up a bottle tonight at the local shop - it was $26.95. I gave the label a once-over to make sure that there weren't any warning signs, and found none other than the inclusion of FD&C Yellow #5 and Blue #1, both of which we saw in LTV. However, the Absinthe Ordinaire presentation appeared far from sensationalistic, so I took a chance. I can't give an in-depth review, but here are some notes:

 

The back label is pretty straightforward, giving the story of Dr. Pierre Ordinaire, and telling you that absinthe was associated with the bohemian spirit and the Belle Epoque. It does warn the drinker: "Absinthe Ordinaire is 92 proof, so please drink with extreme caution."

post-430-1270266845_thumb.jpg

 

The pre-louche color is acceptable, but don't forget that it's enhanced with FD&C coloring:

post-430-1270266972_thumb.jpg

 

The nose is pretty much one-note - anise. It louches quickly, with not a lot of trails, more like an all-at-once opacity. That could be my broilleur, however, so I'll give it a pass. The post-louche color is light green cream:

post-430-1270267086_thumb.jpg

 

It's a simple beverage, pretty much anise and not a lot else. I'd venture to say it's an oil mix, because it left beads of water/absinthe on the inside of my glass that are reminiscent of an oil slick. This is indeed an ordinary beverage, nothing notable or surprising, but nothing offensive, either. At the price, it's tough to knock it too much. I'd venture to say that this is a positive development toward mainstreaming absinthe at an affordable price point.

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Count me out! It's good that there are choices in your neck of the woods. Some states are still one or two trick ponies. It's just a shame Ordinaire was one of your choices. Still though, you've done us all a service, as usual. Thanks!

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I'd venture to say that this is a positive development toward mainstreaming absinthe at an affordable price point.

Not if it doesn't sell.Thirty-six dollars is still an expensive bottle of booze compared to other spirits on the shelves, and if first-timers decide to blow that kind of money on a mystery drink and the experience is underwhelming, little ground is won.

 

I remember saying here once, in the context of a discussion about proposed labeling language, that no distillery would ever put the word "ordinary" on their label, and so any attempt to legislate such a thing was pointless. Obviously I've been proven wrong. Spectacularly.

 

It would have been cooler if the name was both historic and ironic, for a product with a room-filling aroma and a powerful, charismatic flavor profile that stayed with you for days. Instead, alas, it sounds more like truth in advertising.

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I remember saying here once, in the context of a discussion about proposed labeling language, that no distillery would ever put the word "ordinary" on their label, and so any attempt to legislate such a thing was pointless. Obviously I've been proven wrong. Spectacularly.

I remember that discussion!

 

Instead, alas, it sounds more like truth in advertising

I would love more of this.

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I've seen this at a few shops, but never picked it up. I liked the way the bottle looked though - so I'm sure I will eventually give in an try it!

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Good question. In the photos it looks greener than Grande Absente, which more neon yellow-green.

 

It would be interesting if they repackaged it at a lower price point (or just a made a tweak like adjusting the color). It would be even more interesting if they continued to sell GA at the same time, or even at the same retailers.

 

I'd think the added sugar would be a big giveaway, as it seemed pretty obvious to me in Grande Absente. But even if it isn't the same as GA, if Absinthe Ordinaire is indeed a liqeuer, then it's technically not really absinthe either.

Edited by Green Baron

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If it says "liqueur" on the label, it contains at least 2.5% sugar by weight. From the Beverage Alcohol Manual, Chap. 4 (emphasis mine):

 

Liqueur/Cordial: Flavored spirits product containing not less than 2½% by weight sugar, dextrose, levulose or a combination thereof made by mixing or redistilling any class or type of spirits with or over fruits, flowers, plants or pure juices therefrom or other natural flavoring materials or with extracts derived from infusions, percolation or maceration of such materials.

 

And because "liqueur" is sufficient as class and type designation, they aren't hampered with the funky Statement of Composition ("neutral spirits distilled with herbs and spices", etc.) that real absinthe is. The sugar protects them from having to show on the label that it's made with flavorings.

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Why anyone would waste their money on more rebottled Absente crap, is beyond me.

 

Don't be schmuck, and put more money Roux's pocket.

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I'm sure I could easily find this with a quick search - but since the topic is ongoing and it is somewhat relevant: Are Absente and Grand Absente oil mixes?

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I'd venture to say that this is a positive development toward mainstreaming absinthe at an affordable price point.

Not if it doesn't sell.Thirty-six dollars is still an expensive bottle of booze compared to other spirits on the shelves, and if first-timers decide to blow that kind of money on a mystery drink and the experience is underwhelming, little ground is won.

 

Well, it was a bit cheaper, $27 for the bottle, which is totally in line with the middle-shelf base spirits (Maker's Mark, Tanqueray, Grey Goose, the sorts of names that are popular in the clubs). If it stays at this price point, or at least under $30, I think they've got a simple introductory product that the uninitiated might could take a risk on. AO is at the least unoffensive - it's nowhere near as nasty as Czechsinthe, nor on the other hand not a flavor bomb, nor anywhere near as interesting as Pacifique or Marteau or Vieux Carre, all of which are at least twice the price (and the herb bills certainly justify that, don't get me wrong!).

 

But at the under-$30 price point, perhaps an newbie might take a risk, and discover that absinthe can be tasty and won't drive you crazy. This revelation can invite the novice to research a bit more, then perhaps move up the chain to try something excellent at the higher price point. I will say one thing for this product, at least there's no mention of trippin' ballz or fire or any of the marketing BS that makes us really cringe.

 

We've had the discussions before, whether the market is there for multiple levels of quality absinthes. Perhaps AO ultimately doesn't qualify as an absinthe, because it contains sugar by definition (since it is called a liqueur). But it sounds like few of us have had the chance to taste it and judge it on anything but the label yet, so perhaps we can rectify that (pun intended!) through some old-fashioned research. I'd be happy to arrange some samples for folks who are interested, just go ahead and drop me a note and I'll see what I can do.

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I recently picked up a bottle as well. The bottle was $26.99 and it was the first time that I have seen it for sale in MI. I had a glass and thought that it was not as offensive as Grande Absente or Pernod. I find it to be lacking in complexity but it tastes like absinthe so I intend to use it to try some mixed drinks from The Little Green Book of Absinthe that I have been wanting to try. I figure that I can try mixing with this stuff so I can find what I like and not waste any good absinthe on a drink that I pour out. Then I can add good absinthe to drinks that I want to explore further.

 

I agree that a lower priced introductory absinthe is a good thing. People will pay $30 all day for vodka so absinthe under $30 may bring new consumers to try absinthe. The higher the market demand becomes, the more brands will be available for everyone because manufacturers will want a piece of the action. As long as the $30 absinthe doesn't scare people away then I am all for it.

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I also purchased this AO as a gift for a person who told me to find a "good absinthe".... I told her that the taste of AO is good and if she really likes she needs to maybe decide on more expensive brands.

 

I read this thread and also decided on a suggestion given above that AO is a good way to try some mixed drinks with a "not so expensive absinthe" and I also bought one bottle for me.

 

I was surprised with the price $28.99 in my local liquor store, anything that I buy through the Internet is about 2 - 3 times this price.

 

I don't know if it is relevant to this thread, but why good absinthes are so expensive ? Even expensive Cognacs are on the low end price of good absinthes....

 

cheers,

 

- Marcelo

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Several things to point out:

 

1) If you look at AO per serving, it's not nearly as cheap as you think, compared to other absinthes.

2) AO is a cheaply made oil mix liqueur

3) Production costs for absinthe are quite high compared to other spirits. Not only do you have to source herbs for the distillate (most of which are hard to find in large quantities and high quality without extreme costs), but then you have the added cost of coloration herbs, many of which are again quite expensive.

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