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JosephLabrecque

Absinthe Fountain Maintenance

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I'm curious as to two specific concerns with absinthe fountain maintenance:

 

Long Term Care - I've had my fountain for over a year with heavy usage in the past 8 months. Is there anything I should be doing for maintenance here? Preserving the proper functioning, long term?

 

Short Term Care - Whenever I employ my fountain, I always drain and let dry afterwards... yet performing these actions a few days in a row can be a bit much, depending upon my habits. Is there any reason not to simply retain water and simply add ice as needed before preparing a drink or two? Will water in the fountain for a few days straight lead to any problems?

 

Thanks, all.

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Semi-related afterthought: I notice that sometimes my see-saw balancier (Lucid-branding) may "catch" upon one side or the other. Any recommendation for this? Should the see-saw hinge be oiled or something to prevent this?

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Hey Joseph, it depends on what kind you have. The vast majority of the metal fountains are considered "ornamental" despite the ability to use them. This is because they are not food service grade. What it boils down to is that they are plated, and depending on your water, you may wind up with pitting, and/or discoloration. I bought a stainless steel one , and for the extra bucks, it was totally worth it. I only use fountains when I have multiple guests however, preferring carafes when I'm having a drink by myself. My guess is that if you let it dry when it isn't being used, you're pretty much doing all you can! I have a wonderful 2 robinet ceramic fountain that I use quite often as well, when it's me and one friend having a drink. It was made by a member here, and I really love it. Obviously glass and ceramic fountains have less issues when it comes to cleaning them. There are great little glass fountains available with plastic spigots that work perfectly well. This may be a good solution for you for casual use when having a glass by yourself, and save the metal one for when more people are there... there's a lot less concerns about cleaning and drying that way! Here's a link to an example of a small 13" tall fountain in glass, that's perfect for a couple glasses. (despite being out of stock) http://www.absinthed...d...p_24.html Also, carafes were the typical way most folks in the cafes and bistros of the era prepped absinthe; It's an easy and trad way to do it when you want a simple way to have a glass. Heck even a 2 cup Pyrex measuring cup with a spout is a great way...it makes a controlled pour of steady slow drips or a thin stream... no cleaning at all with that!

Edited by Scott M.

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Thanks, Scott! I guess I'm doing about all I can then. I do enjoy the fountain but find it a bit excessive for just one person, yeah. I've actually used the glass measuring cups with ice and water and find (as you say) that the stream can be controlled very nicely with them! I have been looking for a nice carafe but have yet to find anything suitable.

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Marc at AbsintheOriginals.com has some actual antique carafes for pretty cheap that were used in French Bistros back in the day...nice little ones that are perfect, thick and heavy! Not too much money either. I have a tiny one that I use regularly that holds enough for two glasses. 60 euro... here's a link. They are so cool to use.

http://www.absintheoriginals.com/carafes.html

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I have a sports bottle I'll sell you for 30 euro... just kidding! But in reality, I probably use a sports bottle more than any other method. It's quick, gets the job done nicely, easy to clean up.

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No matter what one's style and preference... romance, utility, ritual, or just getting it

louched, all that truly matters is.... :arrr:

Edited by Scott M.

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Well I second Scott here.

 

Reasons to dry a fountain :

- Not letting the water go stagnant

- Preserving said fountain

- Ease of maintenance (prevents limescale)

 

Fountains that can stand stagnant water :

- Glass ones

- Ceramic ones

- Stainless steel ones (Frenchman top of the range only, La Véritable)

 

Fountains that cannot

- Other metal Frenchman (including Lady)

- Antique

 

Well you've got it.

 

You should now besides that brouilleurs are sometimes refered, when complex (eg SeeSaw) as "personnal foutains". Fountains were typically barware, and are not thought for a personnal day to day use, pretty much like a complete espresso machine. Selling pricy fountains for mostly lone (2persons = lone here) drinkers is "defective by design".

 

Additional info

 

Medium term - An occasional bath of white vinegar will clean the "plumbing" and may protect spiggots from limescale in a metal fountain.

Works for JR, Stainless steel, others to be tested.

 

Antique restauration & maintenance - If your fountain has a leak, it's over don't use it.

Spiggots on an antique fountain can be stuck. I found that separating the bowl, putting it on its head, and injecting WD40 and let it work for a few hours/days works marvels.

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Get a tube of Taylor Icecream Machine lube, to lube and seal the taps on the modern metal fountains.

 

I did a little tune up work on the tap parts, since I'm used to working with items like that.

 

You almost have to look at the indivual repro fountain. (I had a couple of the early metal repros, which had a little variation in the Q.C. when they were first released)

 

I still use an ancient glass L'Amesinthe fountain from the early 2000s for one or two person use, I take very good care of all this absinthe junk.

Edited by thegreenimp

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If your looking for glass that is unique, there are tons of glass blowers in Colorado. May cost more but getting a custom piece of functional art, worth every penny.

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Semi-related afterthought: I notice that sometimes my see-saw balancier (Lucid-branding) may "catch" upon one side or the other. Any recommendation for this? Should the see-saw hinge be oiled or something to prevent this?

 

I've started having the same problem with my balancier (also a Lucid). How do I get it to go wick-wack again, instead of wonk? Whomp it? Dip it in diluted white vinegar to get the (microscopic, 'cause I can't see anything) gunk out? Can someone please e-Lucid-ate?

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Yep. Or some food grade oil. I spray a dab of PAM on occasionally. Also,make sure it is sitting in the middle of the cradle and not against the side. A light squeeze of the legs will do the trick in the middle of a louche. It's all about balance and friction. :dev-cheers:

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I would put a tiny dap of vaseline on the friction points with a needle.

 

Yep. Or some food grade oil. I spray a dab of PAM on occasionally. Also,make sure it is sitting in the middle of the cradle and not against the side. A light squeeze of the legs will do the trick in the middle of a louche. It's all about balance and friction. :dev-cheers:

 

Thanks for these tips. I'll give one or more of them a try.

 

Balance. There's already too much friction in the world. *smile*

 

My balancier is proof of that! "What the world needs now is Vas-e-line..." (humming). :cheers:

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Yep. Or some food grade oil. I spray a dab of PAM on occasionally. Also,make sure it is sitting in the middle of the cradle and not against the side. A light squeeze of the legs will do the trick in the middle of a louche. It's all about balance and friction. :dev-cheers:

 

Tried the leg squeeze tonight and it worked a charm. The absinthe being louched, by the way, was a sample of 2010 L'Ancienne, courtesy of Brian. Wowwee!

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