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Michael White

Yikes! Bought Sebor (I'm new to this)

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Hi guys,

 

So I am relatively new to Absinthe. Have often enjoyed a glass when out with friends but still don't know much about it. Recently bought a bottle of Sebor Absinth but gather it is mostly hated by those on the Wormwood society forum! I actually like Sebor but don't really have anything to compare it to.

 

So two questions:

 

1) Is Sebor really that bad? What makes it bad?

2) Which other make of Absinthe would you recommend?

 

Much thanks for the help!

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Welcome to the WS, Michael. :wave2:

 

If you would like some direction on what people familiar with absinthe like and recommend, go here. It's a link to the WS absinthe review page, which contains detailed tasting notes on a variety of absinthes.

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1) Is Sebor really that bad? What makes it bad?

"Bad" is really a personal call. Whether or not you like it isn't up to anyone else. But as far as its quality as an absinthe... well, I'm not even certain if it actually is or not. It doesn't really meet the criteria as far as I know. So regardless of whether or not you enjoy it, it doesn't represent what absinthe is.

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Too bitter to be considered an absinthe, in my opinion. It's not distilled, it's an intensely-filtered macerate. Martin Sebor maintained (as does his successor, Bairnsfather) that filtration is a form of distillation, and vice versa.

 

This is based on an over-simplified rationale that each process is used to separate components from one another. Unfortunately it ignores the differences in how that separation operates, and what constituents are, or are not, separated. This assertion is a fallacious categorical syllogism (the "politician's syllogism"):

 

1. All cats have four legs

2. My dog has four legs

3. Therefore, my dog is a cat.

 

or

 

1. Distillation separates compounds

2. Filtration separates compounds

3. Therefore, filtration is distillation.

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If it tastes good, then it's not bad. It might not actually BE absinthe - but what of it? The only thing that should concern you, is that if there are other bottles out there that might actually taste BETTER :) And Better IS Better :)

 

True to form, the best way to tell whats better is to try a bottle of something else and experience it yourself. Obviously, you might want to aim for a bottle that other people like before you just take a shot in the dark.

 

Personally I think it best that you really put your nose to the grindstone and do this hard legwork ::grin::

 

What would be even better? See if you know anyone near who HAS a bottle of something different see if you can set up a little "exchange" :) Share a glass of yours, for a glass of theirs and see whats to be seen :)

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I remember when Sebor was one of the "better" Czech absinths, and wasn't even considered really bad overall.

 

Which says nothing about how it would rank in today's market, of course. :poop:

 

 

Welcome! :cheers:

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Hi and Welcome!

Luckily for you, you have found a place with years, or even decades of absinthe tasting and distilling experience. The reviews will set you in the right direction.

 

A good documentary to watch for someone new to absinthe can be found Here

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Michael, I have taken the liberty of moving your thread. Intended or not, it has become a bit of your own Introduction to WS. Please tell us a little more about yourself. Welcome to the Forum. :cheers:

 

Sebor? Blech. I haven't had anything that nasty since...um, last month! :twitchsmile:

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You and me and several other brave folks, who didn't want to taste anything for the week after said tastings/spewing/spittings/gaggings/centipedings.

 

 

Howdy Michael. :cheers: :wave2:

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This is based on an over-simplified rationale that each process is used to separate components from one another. Unfortunately it ignores the differences in how that separation operates, and what constituents are, or are not, separated.

Both processes separate based on different physical properties; filtration separates based on size, distillation separates based on boiling range.

 

One may be able to separate using chemical properties instead of physical properties. IF it were "filtered" through an HPLC (high pressure liquid chromatography) column or through a specialty cross-linked polymer matrix that's treated to actively attach the undesirable or unwanted molecules, then it may be close enough to achieve the separation results of distillation but it would be so expensive as not to be cost effective.

 

However, letting my imagination run free, it could almost be used as a marketing tool to justify the added expense. Just imagine, "achieving the same results without adding heat which may alter the true nature of absinthe's components...". But, then again, it could be the distillation process that causes some additional reactions which adds the je ne se coix that we come to expect from absinthe.

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I thought that by distilling, some of the heavier, more bitter, and toxic properties of Aa are left behind. Filtering might get some (like thujone) but not all the components that make a simple maceration of Aa, so darn bitter.

 

Where is Ted when you need him?

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Welcome, Michael.

2) Which other make of Absinthe would you recommend?

That could depend on where you are. Something in the way you write makes you think you might be from the UK which might affect the answers you would get here.

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It has been a while since I have stumbled upon such an active forum. Love it!

 

So many different replies and clearly many other drinks which I have yet to taste. Yes Alan, I am from London. :) By chance I have discovered that London has an Absinthe bar which may be interesting to visit. The WS is a breath of fresh air as Absinthe in the UK is still regarded as a drink drunk by the devil. I have yet to cut off one of my ears...

 

Gwydon - Thanks for your explaination of distillation. Really makes sense of the criteria in my mind that could be used to judge Absinthe (or Absinth Sebor's case!).

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Yes Alan, I am from London. :) By chance I have discovered that London has an Absinthe bar which may be interesting to visit. The WS is a breath of fresh air as Absinthe in the UK is still regarded as a drink drunk by the devil.

The London Absinthe Bar has just 3 absinthes (La Clandestine, Butterfly, & Angélique): not surprisingly, I recommend it. The only criticism I have read of it was from a trade magazine saying that it didn't offer enough choice (the magazine has been a fervent supporter of a low quality "absinthe" that shall go nameless here).

 

You're right in your analysis of the UK, although it's changing in London and there are some bars that only stock better quality absinthes (mine, Maison Fontaine, with Jade and Enigma starting to show up).

 

Hope to meet you at one of our London events: I'm doing a tasting at the famous Gerry's in Old Compton Street this Friday (2 - 5 pm).

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Take him up on that offer, Michael. Alan is good people, and you'd get a fantastic opportunity to get a comparison of good absinthe to Sebor.

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Sebor was got me started a good few years back, the kind of drink one does as shots when wanting to get wasted...And for that it does work well! I recently grabbed a bottle of Duplais Balance and it's a totally different drink. From what I've read that's a good starting place..

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Wow, we could replace all the refineries out here with simple filters? :)

 

Yeah, I never knew I was changing my car's FRAM still every time I change my oil. I should have been saving up those little distilleries for a home desalination plant.

Edited by nerologic

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However, letting my imagination run free, it could almost be used as a marketing tool to justify the added expense. Just imagine, "achieving the same results without adding heat which may alter the true nature of absinthe's components...". But, then again, it could be the distillation process that causes some additional reactions which adds the je ne se coix that we come to expect from absinthe.

 

It would be much simpler to distill it under vacuum. It tastes preposterously fresh when compared to traditional distilling since the oils/ethanol/water can boil just slightly above room temp. Still expensive in a commercial rig, I'm sure, but it would be fairly easy to pull off on a "lab scale".

 

Not that I'd know. That's all hypothetical, except in New Zealand :rolleyes:

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