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greytail

How do you gauge your "sweet spot"?

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For me, I have a small wooden skewer with which I have marked some ratios off with. Even with this device my calculations are sometimes off. I guess I get the best results when I add less water, taste then add more if I so desire. Funny because depending upon my concentration, I tend to get different results more than similar.

 

All in all, not a bad thing, but I wish there were a way for me to get a more consistent glass each time I louche up. Know what I mean?

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If it's an absinthe I know, I don't even think about it. Turn on the water and relax. If it's a new absinthe, I always try to under-water secure in the knowledge I can always add more water.

 

It's such a matter of personal taste and mood to me. Some days, I want a spicy, stronger glass and other days, a more mellow refreshing glass. Tonight, I want a couple more homebrews. :cheers:

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Oh, we're talking about absinthe? :devil:

 

Back to the matter at hand, I agree with Joe. Water conservatively. You can always add more. You can't take it away.

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For lower abv absinthes (50% +/-) I start at 2:1, then sip and add until I'm happy. For anything over 60%, I start at 3:1. I have found that bluefinger guy's chart to be a quite handy reference. I have a laminated copy of it I keep on the bar.

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If it's an absinthe I know, I don't even think about it. Turn on the water and relax. If it's a new absinthe, I always try to under-water secure in the knowledge I can always add more water.

 

That sums it up for me.

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I know it's right around the top of the facets on my Pontarlier glasses (usually slightly above) and I can smell when it's done.

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What the third quote in the clown's siggy says. For some reason I freaked out about ratios with my fountain, but with droppers I don't. With the La rochere reservoir glasses the facts help, but it does depend on the absinthe. The TAB method, of tasting after the neat line disappears, works well too.

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The TAB method, of tasting after the neat line disappears, works well too.

See, I've just never thought that method works well, especially for newer consumers. The 'green meniscus' typically disappears while the absinthe is quite strong. Based on my own experiences, I'm seeing a ton of newcomers severely under watering their absinthe. This method certainly can contribute to that.

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I agree that stopping after the neat line disappears makes it quite strong... for me. But I do know people who like it that way.

 

I go by the glass I'm using. I have two favorite glasses, and I like a roughly 4:1 ratio. They aren't specifically absinthe glasses, but do have features that I can mark measurements by. I know on both glasses where to pour the absinthe to for approx. 1 oz, then to the right amount of water. For certain absinthes, or for certain moods, I'll pour in more absinthe but water to the same mark. Works well.

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4-to-1 is usually my choice, too with a slight tweaking in either direction for my mood or the absinthe I'm pouring.

 

The TAB method, of tasting after the neat line disappears, works well too.
See, I've just never thought that method works well, especially for newer consumers.
Absolutely right, Brian. It has never worked for me, either. All it has really been good for is to let me know it is still under-watered but getting close: Time to pay attention.

 

Using the 'green meniscus' as a gauge will mean you're serving your absinthe too strong and working your taste buds over. I think it's a great way to miss much of the herbal flavor an absinthe is offering. That's just my 2 cents.

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I'm with Ambear and Crow on the glass thing, having a couple of familiar glasses makes it pretty easy for me to get a 4:1, and that usually works fine. And then the "you can always add more water" thing is always there, but even so, I sometimes over-water. And most of the time, while maybe sub-optimal, an over-watered absinthe is still a pretty nice drink.

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an over-watered absinthe is still a pretty nice drink.

I suppose it is. I think bauble likes his absinthe at least 8:1 and then adds water as desired. He's a right smart fellow and a pretty fair hand with fountains.

 

His drinks last longer than mine. ;)

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I keep it really simple. I fill the reservior of my glass (1 to 1.5 oz of absinthe) then use a one-cup measuring cup to slowly pour 4 to 4.5 oz of (sometimes sugared) cold water from the cup - which seems to be the range in which I like most absinthes. The lower proof absinthes (up to 65 percent) turn out nicely 'floral', and distinctive, while the higher proof absinthes maintain their distinctive flavor profile while packing a pleasant punch - giving me a range of gustatory experience. Before I pour the absinthe, I decide which kind of experience I want: more 'floral' or more assertive.

 

I've become too impatient, perhaps lazy, to slowly drip the water anymore - what I did religiously for the first year or so of drinking absinthe, and find that the end result is pretty much the same to my, perhaps unsophisticated - but appreciative - palate. Luckily the absinthes these days are so good (and forgiving) that I'm never disappointed by the results. Sante! :cheers:

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I held an absinthe tasting for a group of wine folks recently and over-watered the final offering, L'Italienne. I was so mad at myself as it really killed the flavor profile, and this was after I had talked it up as my personal favorite. They were all very gracious and didn't say anything. Perhaps they didn't notice, but I did and it was an important lesson for me.

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Given all the above, do you take temperature of the drink into consideration regarding the whole experience?

 

 

<---------- He does. ;)

 

Looks like we agree again, Bill.

 

Dangerous precedent being set here. :laugh:

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I held an absinthe tasting for a group of wine folks recently and over-watered the final offering, L'Italienne. I was so mad at myself as it really killed the flavor profile, and this was after I had talked it up as my personal favorite. They were all very gracious and didn't say anything. Perhaps they didn't notice, but I did and it was an important lesson for me.

I know that urge to hastily grab their glasses and shout, "NO! Don't drink that! I ruined them! I'll do it again, but right next time!" as they look at you with that judging look sprinkled with confusion.

 

Oh, that's just me?

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The 'green meniscus' typically disappears while the absinthe is quite strong.

 

It depends strongly on the watering method too...if water is being added in a splashy way, it may disappear much faster, and some absinthes don't seem to get that "line" at all.

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I know that urge to hastily grab their glasses and shout, "NO! Don't drink that! I ruined them! I'll do it again, but right next time!"

 

The only reason I didn't do that was it was their first time tasting absinthe so there's not much chance they would have noticed a dramatic difference. I'm not saying they wouldn't have noticed a difference, but not like I did, and since Stefano isn't making any more L'Italienne, I didn't have the heart to sink it.

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Given all the above, do you take temperature of the drink into consideration regarding the whole experience?

 

 

<---------- He does. ;)

 

I'm in no hurry, so the temperature of the drink goes up as it sits in the glass, providing an even greater spectrum of flavor over the time it takes to quaff the elixir.

 

I suppose I just like the flavor of absinthe as it sits and changes in my glass without the magical, if not snobbish, overlay of ritual that many seem to impart to the experience. It is, after all, only quality booze, not a religious apotheosis. But then maybe I'm in a minority here - which bothers me not. 'Different strokes' as they say.

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since Stefano isn't making any more L'Italienne, I didn't have the heart to sink it.

Not making it any more? I just bought my first bottle a couple of months ago and love it. Will it really not be available any more?

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Given all the above, do you take temperature of the drink into consideration regarding the whole experience?

 

 

<---------- He does. ;)

 

I like my absinthe very cold, so always add a few cubes of ice. It doesn't have much effect on the mix, as I drink about half of it pretty quickly. The rest is a bit thinner but not much. Sometimes I forget and let the last bit melt, but it's still tasty to me. Then I go make another. :)

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Not making it any more? I just bought my first bottle a couple of months ago and love it. Will it really not be available any more?

 

I understand that there is still decent availability of L'Italienne, but it's out of production and once it's gone, it's gone for good.

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Not making it any more? I just bought my first bottle a couple of months ago and love it. Will it really not be available any more?

 

I understand that there is still decent availability of L'Italienne, but it's out of production and once it's gone, it's gone for good.

 

Thanks, Doc (sorry for being presumptuous but I see they call you Doc)... I'll order another bottle tout de suite!

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