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greytail

Base Alcohol choice.

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For example, I taste a little something in the Jades. I assume it's the same "funk" most people describe, but for me I'd say it's a distinct cuntiness. There, I said it. :tongue:

 

Bingo. I agree there is something vaginal that I too detect in some absinthes. It's good to know I'm not alone.

 

If that's the mysterious "funk", then I'm really surprised that I don't enjoy them a lot more than I do. :huh:

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It's good to know I'm not alone.

Oh my, no!

 

It's because you're just not crotch-ety enough.

HA!

 

It's my happy place. *stupid silly grin*

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It's because you're just not crotch-ety enough.

 

Perhaps...I should be more enthusiastic about that knitting stuff, I guess. :tongue:

Edited by Absomphe

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For example, I taste a little something in the Jades. I assume it's the same "funk" most people describe, but for me I'd say it's a distinct cuntiness. There, I said it. :tongue:

 

Bingo. I agree there is something vaginal that I too detect in some absinthes. It's good to know I'm not alone.

 

I imagine that's why the Jades are often called "masculine" absinthes... appealing more often (but not always!) to a masculine palette...

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Speaking of that feminine funk, I believe that is what my palate detected in Verte de Fuegerolles. I try not to bring it up, every time my wife hears me muttering about veronica or melissa she gets pissed for some reason

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I might be missing something here but if you are after a neutral base then most if not all the flavor is stripped away so price becomes a major factor in production. I believe the real difference in taste comes when adding the herbs to the neutral and not whether the neutral came from a fruit or grain base. This comment is probably a bit over simplified

 

This is an interesting observation. As you noted, on the surface of things it would seem that distillers are after a completely neutral base. But if such a base is able to be obtained from almost anything, from grapes to grains to beets, then why not go with the absolute cheapest? I'm sure some distillers do this, but certainly some don't.

 

The fact that distillers don't all use the same thing, and that using a wine base was such a point of pride for Pernod Fils after others went to cheaper "industrial alcohols," indicates to me that the base alcohol is not a zero-sum game. One possibility is that these bases were not as neutral (i.e., distilled to ~96% alcohol) as we think they were. Maybe the ABV was a little lower, so that more of the flavor of the original source came through.

 

I recently had a sample of circa 1910 Pernod Fils, and I was shocked to be able to taste the difference in the base. There was a softer mouthfeel for sure, but there was also a different character to the "foundation," for lack of a better word, and it was clearly differentiated from the herb bill. Maybe that distinction is with the base and it was there all along, or maybe it was a result of 100 years of aging and degradation, but it was palpable.

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Age makes a difference. If the folks are going on about how much difference there is in a 3 year old absinthe and an absinthe produced last month, imagine what 100 years may do for/against it.

 

I'm pretty new to the whole pre-ban thing but the way I understand it is that the folks we get it from have tasted it before ever announcing it's existence. They would never advertise or promote crap absinthe even if it was 100 years old. They MUST sell good tasting booze or they wouldn't be playing this game.

 

For guys that work for wages like myself and the WS membership or the great majority of them, they would only buy pre-ban once if it was pooh pooh.

 

Be it beet, grape, sugar cane or grain base. I feel I am in the minority because I rarely know what base is used unless it's on the label.

 

I'm just rambling tonight.......don't know why.

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Hey, now worries, Bill. Rambling is still conversation :cheers:

 

To your point, I certainly acknowledge that the deck is stacked against anything resembling "accuracy" when it comes to using preban as a judge. However, comparing apples to apples to a certain degree, I can tell you that the sample of circa 1905 Edouard Pernod was heavier and spicier than the Pernod Fils, and it was not just the herb bill which made it so (to the best of my ability to tell). I believe there may have been a brandy or cognac base used for the EP, and if so, that would fit with my impression of it.

 

I'm just guessing and throwing darts in the air here, but there was something about the Pernod Fils that made me think that not only did it use a softer wine base, but that the wine base was NOT completely neutral.

 

For the record, I'm not very good at telling bases apart, either. I can do that with the Delaware Phoenix absinthes, but I think that's mostly because Cheryl doesn't age those at all and they're noticeably hot when I first open the bottle (and for some time after).

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Aging a fresh from the pot absinthe a few days will soften the youthful harshness associated with the coloring sometimes. It will set long enough so harshness will be less noticable. I believe, it's just my lazy assed opinion, that when people open a bottle and let it breathe it actually helps with the taming of the booze. There will be a very nice smoothness(sp?) compared to a two week old absinthe.

 

I have set blanche bsinthe in a sunny spot in our hovel and just open it each day and let the ugly out.

 

You can get one of those aquarium air stones for aquariums and run some air through the booze also. Done it and it works.....even if it's just in my mind. But, it makes sense.......doesn't it?

 

Have fun with your booze.

 

You worked hard for it. mess with it. talk to it and if you can sing (I can't) sing to your booze. It's ok, nobody will hear you and the booze likes it.

 

Have a glorious day, each and everyone of you. :cheers:

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Keep in mind that promoting grape alcohol for Pernod was also a matter of national pride.

 

In theory neutral alcohol is exactly that, but the definition of neutral varies, even by law. I used to think absolutely neutral alcohol was essential for absinthe, because then the herbs have nowhere to hide, but I came around to the opinion that there's something about a flavory grape alcohol base that pulls the herb flavors together in a way that grain alcohol doesn't. I'm not sure I've ever tasted a grape-based alcohol that was completely neutral (95% or thereabout).

 

I think the flavor of 100-year old absinthe has to do with degradation all around, of both the herbal extracts, the wine alcohol, and both in tandem in some way I don't pretend to understand. It would be interesting to have Ted Breaux weigh in on that.

 

Home brewing supply stores sell sinter stones for oxygenating the wort (it promotes yeast reproduction). One of those connected to a small oxygen cylinder by Tygon tubing would work equally well for oxygenating absinthe, I would think.

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Thank you sir.

 

I saw some of those air stones at some store that were connected to a stainless tube, similar to a racking cane. I thought it would be something to speed up the oxygenation but I wouldn't use it a lot thinking that the vapors would leave.

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[snip]

You can get one of those aquarium air stones for aquariums and run some air through the booze also. Done it and it works.....even if it's just in my mind. But, it makes sense.......doesn't it?

[snip]

 

There does seem to be something to the idea, but be careful with the aquarium air stones. I'm not sure if they're food safe, and it looks like some of them are made using fiberglass now, the fibers of which you definitely don't want to ingest.

 

Have a glorious day, each and everyone of you. :cheers:

Right back at ya!

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The air stones were just that it seems. Some looked like some sort of metal and some were similar in texture to a limestone/dolomite.

 

As Artemis posted, check the brew shops. Better yet, if I get time I'll check the brew shops and test the things. I've seen some that looked bullet proof but absinthe is higher proof.

 

Fiberglass and asbestos or mostly(this is going to cost me) dangerous if you breathe the particles.

 

Get either of them wet and you are good to go. Don't inhale the dust of either.

 

Pass the paint chips. ;)

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I've used one to make beer quite a lot. They're not actually stones; they're made of stainless steel. I should have written "sintered" rather than "sinter". They're porous in imitation of natural stone with similar properties that was previously (maybe still, I don't know) used in similar applications.

 

An example:

http://www.homebrewing.com/equipment/stain...l-air-stone.php

Edited by Artemis

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Reading the TTB stuff linked by G, I realized there is a huge difference in Pisco and Grappa, that I might have not noticed (although I'm sure it might have been pointed out).

According to the TTB grappa, pomace, marc are:

· Brandy distilled from the skin

and pulp of sound, ripe fruit

after the withdrawal of the

juice or wine

While pisco (and the grape based alcohol used by some well regarded absinthes) is made from the grapes themselves, or basically distilled wine. Pisco is defined by the TTB as:

PISCO¹ Peruvian grape brandy stored in

other than oak containers

Anyway, not all grape sourced spirits are the same. I know I've had cheap Pisco, and I've had some my fine blended (red and white wine) Biondi, that is awesome.

Edited by Miguel

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Pisco is defined by the TTB as:

PISCO¹ Peruvian grape brandy stored in

other than oak containers

 

It's not in the same league, but El Massaya arak is aged in clay amphorae for two years, and it has a brandy base. Depending upon the clay used, and whether or not it is glazed, this could play a factor in the aging process. Usually unglazed clay has an absorption percentage while still being considered "watertight", even when fired to the right cone in terms of temperature time exposed to high heat. Even slight porosity or absorption could allow the spirit to be exposed to oxygen, as well as minerals in the clay or glaze that could contribute or negate flavors.

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I think we're all saying the same thing. ;)

 

Funny story I heard but I don't remember the source:

For all practical purposes, 95% neutral spirit is pure. You can get 100% neutral spirit but as soon as you open it, it will begin to absorb humidity from the surrounding air and will continue to do that until it reaches 95%. If I could remember who told me that, it would make the story more credible.

 

I'm not a scientist.

 

Just for reference, you're absolutely right Joe. At roughly 95% alcohol and higher, alcohol forms what's known as an azeotrope with water. Basically, they form a strong intermolecular attraction to each other and simply won't let go. Distillation of any type won't work. The only way to go high is by adding Benzene (cancerous, toxic compound). Benzene forms a stronger azeotrope interaction with water which pulls it away from alcohol. You then distill off the alcohol and get closer to that magic 100% number. However, there will always be some water and more importantly Benzene in the alcohol, which makes it unfit for human consumption. Leaving out the alcohol on a countertop will cause it to also soak up moisture from the atmosphere.

Edited by optional

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Same here. In my more creative moments, I consider it my blank canvas. Then I remember my fingerpainting adventures and know, I need a better analogy. :laugh:

 

The only way to go high is by adding Benzene (cancerous, toxic compound).
Thanks for that, Optional. Mmmm. essence of Benzene in my absinthe? Nah. :twitchsmile:

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Vacuum distilling will get you 100% I think but the instant it is exposed to air it will gather enough moisture to knock it down to 97.6% or there abouts. *

 

Just stuff I read. I just finished reading "The Help". My kindle is a delightful tool.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

*I'm often totally wrong. <shrug>

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95.6%

 

The azeotrope will contain 4.4% water absent an anhydrous environment*

 

*Tedspeak

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