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Brian Robinson

L'Italienne è finito

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I recently found out from the source that Stefano has decided to get out of the absinthe business. I waited to post this until I'd garnered permission from him to do so.

 

I'm quite sad to hear this is the case. L'Italienne is one of my favorite summer absinthes, and I was eagerly awaiting the release of his other upcoming venture, La Grenouille. The prototype I received was mighty tasty. Unfortunately, it seems as though it will never make it to market.

 

I wish Stefano the best, and will continue to hoarde what L'Italienne I have left.

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Very sad, indeed.

 

The La Grenouille had an absolutely delightful marshmallow/ vanilla character that was rounded out by a heftier dose of anise than fans of the L'Italienne had come to expect from a Stefano creation. The finish delivered his signature velvet hammer of dry, floral Italian wormwood, and I think it was his most wonderful effort. Stefano's artistic flair, and innovative approach to absinthe will be sorely missed.

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That's one I haven't opened yet. I suppose I'll put it at the back of the stash now.

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I tasted a very early version of this, but never had the chance to taste the finished product that I can recall. Sad, that. Sorry to hear the news. I hope he'll take pleasure in knowing his product was held in high esteem.

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And I tasted even earlier prototypes when I met Stefano in France several years ago. I've been "his biggest fan" since then (though not in a Kathy Bates/Misery sort of way). No one has equalled the fragrance of any of his extraits that I've tasted: any version of l'Italienne, la Grenouille, and the (for me) mind-blowing vintage-ish reproduction.

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I have been enjoying La Grenouille recently. Sad to see this ... especially after Helfrich stopped distilling. I am reminded of these lyrics:-

 

"It seems the good die young ...."

 

OK, no-one has died, and Serge may not want to be called "young ..." but I do wonder whether there is a pattern emerging. The more bad "absinthes" there are stuffing up the market, the more difficult it is for smaller craftsmen to make a living out of it.

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Believe it or not, I just read something like that elsewhere as well. Weird, considering I rarely venture out of the WS forums.

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Well, if anyone ever wants to try it and hasn't yet, just shoot me a PM. I have some and I don't like it at all. It's too quirky for me, just like St. George.

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Very sad news about the end of an absinthe artiste's commercial career. :3869-sadbanana:

 

 

And... that's all I have to say about that.

 

 

 

 

There have been hints of a Helfrich renaissance, but that's all I have to say about that.

 

 

"Ditto".

 

 

Maybe it's time for one of the remaining intrepid absinthe artisans to distill a commemorative "Forest Gumpsinthe".

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Well, if anyone ever wants to try it and hasn't yet, just shoot me a PM. I have some and I don't like it at all. It's too quirky for me, just like St. George.

 

L'Italienne or Helfrich? Not a fan of Helfrich at all.

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Well, if anyone ever wants to try it and hasn't yet, just shoot me a PM. I have some and I don't like it at all. It's too quirky for me, just like St. George.

 

L'Italienne or Helfrich? Not a fan of Helfrich at all.

 

The L'Italienne was what I was talking about. I loved the Helfrich verte I got to try. I wish I'd had the pleasure of trying the blanche.

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Sad indeed. I do hope he makes a comeback. There will always be room for more good absinthe made by people who want to do it right.

 

... I do wonder whether there is a pattern emerging. The more bad "absinthes" there are stuffing up the market, the more difficult it is for smaller craftsmen to make a living out of it.

 

I think the pattern is that it's hard as hell for an idealistic craftsman to bootstrap his way into this trade. Add to that the multiple opportunities to make a bad business deal or two, and you have a tough row to hoe.

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This sucks big time. Such a unique absinthe and one of my faves. I hope he finds a way to keep producing. Someone mentioned this as an 'absinthe art' in the review section. I have to agree.

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I am so bummed at hearing this. I would have to say that L'Italienne is my favorite absinthe. I was just thinking the other day how cool it is that I have 3 bottles right now. Now I feel like 3 isn't enough. :no:

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Hey guys,

Brian has been kind enough to make this thread in memory, so here I am, and what I want to tell you is that I'm so grateful to all of you, for the support, for the knowledge shared, for the fun we had in Absinthiades and Boveresse, you are amazing people, I really mean it!

I tried to hold on and keep on distilling as long as I could, cause I love absinthe and I loved the idea to have this as my job. Actually it was more than love: I always wanted to be a writer, but I gave up soon after high school cause I was aware that that wasn't something you can call a job, it can be a hobby, nothing more. Problem is I desperately need to express my creativity somehow, so after I finished studying economics at the university (and it's been a fucking nightmare, cause for a creative person economics is like holy water for the devil) I was so frustrated I didn't know what to do. Then I started drinking absinthe, and slowly I started to dare thinking that maybe I could become a distiller, so when my first experiments got the attention of some experts it was a shock! Like OMFG I can actually do this! I can realize my dream and make something creative and art-related! So I started putting all of myself into this, and in a matter of 6 months I came out with the Italienne recipe. But then problems arose, and the reality started to become clearer and clearer: again it wasn't different, absinthe was something I could do as an hobby, not for making a living out of it. I didn't want to believe it, I couldn't accept it, and you can believe me if I say I tried EVERY possible way to make this job a real job. But eventually I had to face the reality, and I couldn't escape anymore.

But it hurts, badly, cause again my dreams has been crushed again, and now I don't know what I'll do, but quite surley it won't be anything creative, cause now I need to make money. I loved the absinthe world immensely, and that's why now I need to stay away from it, at least for some time. I know it sounds stupid, but for me it's just like if I split with a girlfriend, and right now the wound is wide open.

I hope someday I'll be able to come back somehow, like if I'll find a new job that I like it will be (with the same metaphor) like having a new girlfriend, so coming back in the absinthe world won't hurt anymore.

I know I'm weird but that's just how I am, that's nothing I can do with it.

So this will be my last post, for anyone willing to stay in touch just add me on FaceBook, I already got many absinthe friends there, and I'm always glad to hear from friends.

So again, thank you all so much, it's been a blast. I love you!!!

 

Stefano

Edited by Conte d'Ugenta

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Believe me when I say that I completely understand where you’re coming from. I feel stifled where I’m at right now as well. To hear of a man have a creative outlet as his primary source of income is a brilliant, brilliant thing. To hear of it all being dashed away, truly heartbreaking. Good luck to you. Never give up that creative spirit. Because to lose that is to lose who we truly are. In most cases, you can’t suppress creativity even if you try. So keep your chin up and an ear open for your next opportunity to express yourself.

 

Good luck and cheers.

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