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absinthiav

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Hi all,

 

I want to let you know about my crowdfunding campaign for my soon-to-be-launched absinthe brand!

 

http://igg.me/at/absinthe

I am grateful for any support you can provide! Would you please consider helping me launch my dream?

Cheers,
Absinthia (Jennifer Vermut Baum)
Absinthia's Bottled Spirits, LLC

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I'm a bit confused. I hope you don't mind my asking, but you mention in the video about getting a wholesaler's license, not a DSP basic permit. Are you working through another distillery? Not that there's anything wrong with that, I do it, I'm just curious. I'm not sure why you'd need to be a wholesaler, since that's part of the distillery permit.

 

Best of luck in your worthy endeavors.

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Thank you!

 

I will be working through another distillery. I will be more free to discuss who/when/where and all the fun details when the business is further along. I have picked what I believe to be the best and cannot wait to share with you who they are and why I have picked them. I am in the business of making absinthe, not running a distillery :) I will say that the distiller is certified biodynamic, organic, and kosher. I will also be using certified organic herbs. We will create a master recipe together per my standards.

 

The campaign offers a hand numbered bottle from our first batch. Our lawyers say they must be picked up at our warehouse in the SF Bay Area - we cannot ship out of state. I do hope you will pick one up and maybe come visit if you are out of state, or contribute to the campaign in some way.

 

Cheers!

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While I'm always glad to see a lover of absinthe enter into the production game:

I am in the business of making absinthe, not running a distillery :)

If you ain't running a still, you ain't making absinthe. ;)

 

I sincerely wish you the best, but you have to understand that most of the people on this site who say they 'make absinthe' actually MAKE absinthe. From your site it seems like you've actually made it yourself in the past. Why the change of heart?

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What Brian said. I know you don't mean to slight your distilling colleagues but most of us take running a distillery and making absinthe very seriously. While G~ may not own a distillery (yet), we know he is his own cook and knows more about copper than 99.9% of the people in the industry. We are in the business of running a distillery and absinthe is our passion.

 

"I will say that the distiller is certified biodynamic, organic, and
kosher. I will also be using certified organic herbs. We will create a
master recipe together per my standards.
"

I'm not sure how a distiller becomes Kosher but most neutral spirits are labeled "Kosher, not for passover." Most of us also use organic herbs, not necessarily to be organic but because they are frequently the best herbs available. However, I recently found a new herb source for beautiful Florence Fennel, but it is not organic. So, do I stay with my organic source and tout my organisity (I made that word up) or do I go with a better quality fennel? It's an easy decision. Oh yeah, we all have "master recipes."

 

I don't mean to harsh on you but you have unwittingly slighted a good many artists here. They are good people with passion, skills and experience. They are also people that could be of help to you down the road and believe me, everyone needs a little help from time-to-time. Your enthusiasm is commendable and I wish you tremendous success. I would gently suggest choosing your words cautiously so that those before you become your colleagues and not your competitors.

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I'm not sure how a distiller becomes Kosher but most neutral spirits are labeled "Kosher, not for passover."

 

Well, for starters, no grain spirits are ever going to be Kosher for passover, since grain+water products are expressly prohibited during passover by Kashrut law. But Absinthia will be using grape spirits as I recall, so passover isn't an issue. However, with grapes, non-Jews are an issue.

 

When I was investigating certification back in 2007, Rabbi Simcha at Seattle Vaad said that "the grape is a significant issue. I am not aware of any kosher grape spirits that are available on the market today. There may be a company in Israel making something of the sort, but I suspect it would be impractical if not impossible to deal with the import of such a product even if it is available and they would be willing to sell. It is possible to arrange a certification for the production of grape spirits if you have the equipment to do so. We could in theory work with you to produce some batches that could be stored and used in making the other products that you are looking at."

 

When he says "work with", he means that literally, since grape products processed by non-Jews can't be certified.

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Brian, she's a Burner (Burning Man Veteran). From my experience with other Burners they tend to get really, really, busy a month or so before the festival. I think it starts in late August this year. I'd say sometime in September she can delve in to this again.

 

As far as her working with another distiller, it's not much different than people working with someone like Oliver Matter to create a product while not necessarily distilling it themselves. It can be a good way to develop a brand until someone is ready to start up a distillery on their own.

 

As far as Kosher stuff goes, I have no clue so I have no comment.

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As busy as she may be, I still get a lot of PMs and Event Invites from her asking for help and feedback. As Gwydion mentioned, I'm not against her using another distiller. It's been done multiple times before, including the first commercial run of Marteau, Twin Tec, all runs of EdwardIII, etc. I guess the issue that I have has more to do with the tack that has been taken to get this to market.

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I guess the issue that I have has more to do with the tack that has been taken to get this to market.
Funny, tacky was the nicest word that came to mind when I first saw this.

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As Gwydion mentioned, I'm not against her using another distiller. It's been done multiple times before, including the first commercial run of Marteau, Twin Tec, all runs of EdwardIII, etc.

 

And there's a world of difference between hiring another distiller to come up with a product for your brand idea because you have no interest in distilling, and contracting with one to let you come into their distillery and make the thing yourself, as Ted and I do.

 

I guess the issue that I have has more to do with the tack that has been taken to get this to market.

 

As do I. The absinthe world is still small (microscopic, in fact) and it always rouses my suspicion and curiosity when a new "absinthe expert" suddenly arrives on the scene, sprung fully-formed from the head of Zeus. Can you imagine if an unknown distiller suddenly showed up in the Scotch world, claiming tenure?

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She's put herself in an odd spot. I've followed her on FB for years. From what I have seen (and this is just IMHO) she comes off as a person who loves the 'idea' of absinthe, and the spirit of it, and seems to have been something of an 'absinthe advocate/educator (I am using that extremely cautiously) for years. To be honest, I have not seen much evidence of genuine knowledge though. Posts on Facebook are general themed around 'absinthe is so much fun', but not much more meat. I've not seen her post anything incorrect or detrimental to knowledge about absinthe, but 'meatless' and 'flighty' seem closer to what she posts.

 

And regarding her brand, she's talked about forever... but (again) nothing ABOUT it. Nothing about flavor profiles, herbs used, goals for the brand, inspiration to make it. I defriended her (nothing she did wrong- I was just doing some routine trimming) a few months ago, so I can't point out anything from her page, but several folks on here are still friends of hers on fb.

 

I'd love to say I am curious for when it comes out, but the truth is, I'm just not- for good or bad. Her upcoming absinthe interests me as much as her occasional posts do- nil.

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Like I said, I hate to see folks not bring their dreams to fruition. I'm curious, is it cool to be fundraising and showing a "tm" on a label, before the trademark is actually

approved? Can one get the permits and labels approved before a trademark is awarded?

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I'm curious, is it cool to be fundraising and showing a "tm" on a label, before the trademark is actually

approved?

™ means you have an unregistered trademark, ® is for registered trademarks.

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Jack, I know you were wondering about the funding itself. If she doesn't reach her goal, she still keeps it all. It's called 'flexible funding'.

 

The main issue I have is that she keeps publicizing that she has been making absinthe in her kitchen for over 15 years or something. It's terribly irresponsible and could cause her quite a few legal problems if anyone in the proper arenas perks up their ears about it.

 

I voiced my concern about it and her response was that her lawyer told her it's nothing more than 'marketing fluff'.

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Yup, as I stated above, my issue (if any) with her is that her statements, details (or lack thereof), etc I have generally taken as 'not terribly serious', 'frivolous', or 'shady'.

 

She's openly talked about making absinthe, but then she'll couch it, for YEARS. In all honesty, she could very well have been legally making 'absinthe' in her kitchen... meaning her product is/was an oil mix. Compounding is perfectly legal- not terribly smart or delicious, but anyone can take a bottle of vodka, add some oils, flavorings, and mixes to it, and be perfectly right with the Feds. That may be why she's so cryptic about her hootch- she knows there are smarties out there (like us) that can see right through shit like that.

 

 

Again, I don't want to jump to any conclusions, or at least too many conclusions, until the product is out, we can see the label, and try the product (you go first!).

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She'd definitely being vague, because she keeps saying she has been making 'real' absinthe in her kitchen. But she's also been fully acknowledging elsewhere that 'real' absinthe is distilled.

 

For her sake, I certainly hope she is simply trying to stretch the truth. It might hurt her reputation if that's the case, but at least it won't get her in legal trouble.

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I don't like to intentionally try to damage reputations, so I want to tread lightly, but maybe it would be a good idea to press her a bit more publicly about these unanswered questions.

 

Thoughts?

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Per your note above, I really don't want to, as it might damage a reputation that (possibly) shouldn't be. As much as I want to hit her pre-release, I also wouldn't want to until I/we've had a chance to try it, and also to read her label.

 

In many ways, as long as her label is am accurate portrayal of whatever is inside her bottle, she didn't lie (much?). It could be terrible absinthe, or good absinthe, or it could just be terrible 'absinthe' that is some sort of oil mix.

 

 

It is a tough call, since she's been an odd duck for so long, to decide though.

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I don't mean to attack her, but instead to ask pertinent questions like:

 

1) Will it truly be distilled?

2) What were you really making in your kitchen?

3) What is your plan with the cash you have raised if you don't get enough to put your brand to market?

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And...

 

4. Can we get 3-4 samples for review, pre-launch.

 

In seriousness, if she believes in her brand, this should be an easy and fast yes. If we were to like it, we would be happy to post positive reviews even.

 

What this will prove, truly once and for all, is 'does she know what she is doing... and does she truly believe in it?'

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I also think it's fair for folks who've donated to know more details. I know a couple people who did donate, and they are curious why they are not being replied to, and why the party for tasting that recently occurred as a perk for $40 donations, did not feature any of this absinthe, as they expected. (This is what I was told by someone who claims to have donated and went).

 

I agree, attacking is unfair. This all may be on the level. Questions like: what is the progress on the permits, the TTB, potential release dates... these are perfectly fair to ask, especially if one has donated money... money that will not be returned, BTW, according to the fine print on the Indiegogo page.

 

I see all these questions as a chance for her to step forward, powerfully, and be transparent with supporters. It's a good thing.

Edited by Scott M.

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I did notice that for $2500 you get to see "the distiller in California's Central Valley",

 

. A lot of the marketing for Mariposa does say" biodydamic"" organic", "kosher."

 

One distillery in central valley cali meets that discription. ( Maybe others exist or are working on those certifications but I could only find the one)

http://www.marianfarmsbiodynamic.com/about-us-2/our-distillery/

 

I do not mean to imply that that specific place, or its people, is, was, or will be involved with any absinthe. But the dots connect as a possibility.

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