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Doc's All Natural, going 'legit' in NYC


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#1 TheLoucheyMonster!

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Posted 02 January 2014 - 03:05 PM

In this case, the story may be more interesting than the product. 

This former hobbyist started in a Harlem basement, and now according to the distiller's FB,, has a new legal distillery in Brooklyn.  Also stated on FB, the distiller links to one retail outlet that bought the first legal run.

 

If the video in the link is any indication of the product now on the market,  I have to say that louche looks awfully thin, practically none.  Enough to raise questions..

 

Links:

The video article  from The Village Voice, showing production.

http://blogs.village...ts_absinthe.php

 

Distiller's FB

https://www.facebook...572651909421433

 

The bottle shop linked by the maker:

http://www.brooklynw...om/default.aspx

I don't see it listed, so you should ask, if interested.

 

Is it good? Is it even absinthe?  Well, this one looks like a gamble, so buyer beware.

 



#2 Evan Camomile

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Posted 03 January 2014 - 12:46 PM

We will see. I have already stated my reservations about craft distilling ruining the impressive ratio of good absinthe made in the U.S. currently. 

 

Like most people new to the market I'm willing to give them the benefit of the doubt, but that is indeed a thin louche. I'm hesitant but not unwilling to try.


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#3 greytail

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Posted 05 January 2014 - 06:44 PM

Any U.S. Absinthe worth it's salt is established so I doubt a bad small batch upstart would detrone them.
Nos adepto quis nos mereo. Nos mereo quis nos adepto.

#4 Joe Legate

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Posted 06 January 2014 - 06:29 PM

A(nother) good absinthe producer only helps the world of absinthe and would be very welcome here and in the market.  Conversely, another bad absinthe is no value anywhere to anyone.  The jury may be out but I'll still hope for the best.



#5 greytail

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Posted 06 January 2014 - 07:25 PM

...

Edited by greytail, 06 January 2014 - 07:29 PM.

Nos adepto quis nos mereo. Nos mereo quis nos adepto.

#6 TheLoucheyMonster!

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Posted 07 January 2014 - 12:09 PM

Hey it can be worse.  Maybe about a year ago, I read a distillers FB page, I forget who, an exchange that went something like this:

 

Distiller:  "HI guys, I am thinking about making absinthe, what flavors would you like to see?

 

**** "how about something tropical like banana or pinapple?

***  "vanilla would be nice!

**** " more grapes, it is made from grapes right? the one I tried tasted like licorice"

 

a few more posts like that, and then another distiller piped in an recommended he contact an individual in 'our world' and do some research first.     So it looks like an domestic Hapsburg line got derailed.



#7 Alan Moss

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Posted 08 January 2014 - 05:55 AM

Strange but I don't yet see any COLA for this on the TTB site. 

 

Good to see that Jim Meehan of New York's PDT concurs with Evan on craft spirits: see Trend 4 here.


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#8 Gwydion Stone

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Posted 10 February 2014 - 06:39 PM

Amen to that.  And I'm still not finding a COLA for it.


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#9 Evan Camomile

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Posted 10 February 2014 - 09:25 PM

He could've just started and is awaiting the TTB to take its sweet time, as you know they are fond of doing.


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#10 Jack Griffin

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Posted 19 May 2014 - 01:03 PM

A friend at the Steampunk World's Fair this weekend, had a new, unopened bottle of Doc's. It looked natural, so my hopes were high. Upon opening the bottle, though not excited, it had enough aroma of absinthe to be marginal, however, all we got were oily trails, no matter how slowly we dripped... No louche at all. Zero. The flavor? Does it matter? Sorry. The maker clearly has no understanding of absinthe whatsoever. Too bad. Another one people will buy, and never trust absinthe again. A shame.

#11 Alan Moss

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Posted 19 May 2014 - 09:39 PM

For the record, the COLA came through a few weeks ago.
www.laclandestine.com: Hand-crafted in the birthplace of absinthe.

#12 JosephLabrecque

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Posted 20 May 2014 - 06:56 AM

If it doesn't louche then what good is it?

 

Disappointing that yet another distiller releases something they call absinthe which really... isn't. Seriously how do you make a non-louching absinthe?



#13 Absomphe

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Posted 20 May 2014 - 08:09 AM

You can't, unless it's actually an absinth.


Yes, I'm Krinkles the Clown on an absinthe a beer bender.

You got a problem with that?


#14 Brian Robinson

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Posted 20 May 2014 - 09:12 AM

We've seen several producers attempt to recreate a 'Czech style' in the US.  Maybe it's unintentional; due to lack of research.  Who knows.  I remember we had the same issue with Knarr.


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#15 Songcatcher

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Posted 20 May 2014 - 10:05 AM

One more reason why places such as this are a necessity to anyone treading the waters of the absinthe world.

The room it smelled heavy of drinkin',  

and the sad silent song, made the hour twice as long,

as I waited for that sun to go sinkin'.


#16 Jack Griffin

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Posted 20 May 2014 - 07:26 PM

I went to their Facebook page, and politely commented about the lack of louche, and received a polite reply.  here's the link to their page.

They say it has only the slightest louche, and they are marketing it as an "American absinthe."  I replied, again politely, but attempting to explain what an insult it is to the other USA distillers who labor to make good absinthe.  Here's the link

https://www.facebook...572651909421433

 

Here's a JPG of the thread.  I wonder if they will delete it... it's why I took a screen grab.

 

docs.jpg



#17 JosephLabrecque

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Posted 21 May 2014 - 10:31 AM

Too polite. I fixed it for you.

 

Attached File  2014-05-21_12-30-07.png   28.66KB   15 downloads



#18 Jack Griffin

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Posted 21 May 2014 - 10:52 AM

I saw that on the thread, and responded.  I hope they will not see these comments as attacks, but helpful suggestions.  The set-up is in their basement, I believe...the alembic can't be more than 40-60 liters.  Throw a few pounds of  green anise into the pot.  Problem solved.



#19 JosephLabrecque

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Posted 21 May 2014 - 11:07 AM

Nothing wrong with a little devil's advocate. You can be the good guy, Scott ;)



#20 JosephLabrecque

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Posted 21 May 2014 - 11:14 AM

Anyway - as an author... you know that when you put something out there you are open to (even inviting) criticism. It goes along with the creative process.

 

It isn't as though any of these criticisms laid against their product are unfounded - or are simply being thrown out there without the intention of making a valid correction.

 

If they do see it as an attack - they need to grow some much thicker skin!



#21 Zman (Marc Bernhard)

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Posted 21 May 2014 - 11:36 AM

Yes, but keep in mind, if they do decide to add anise, they will  have to submit a new TTB formula for approval (3 to six months) followed by a new label approval(after the formula is approved) for said formula (1-3 months, or longer). So you are looking at about six months until they can proceed with any new formula with anise.


If you don't like anise at all, you're not likely to care for any decent absinthe, as absinthe is an anise flavored drink. It's kind of like asking if there are any good beers that don't taste like hops or malt.----Hiram

Marc Bernhard, owner and Master Distiller of Pacific Distillery LLC
Maker of Pacifique Absinthe and Voyager Single Batch Distilled Gin
Woodinville, WA, USA
www.pacificdistillery.com


#22 Jack Griffin

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Posted 21 May 2014 - 11:41 AM

Zman, what really frosts my cajones, is the "American Style absinthe" descriptor, for obvious reasons; guys like you are making real absinthe, here in America, and it's a pie in the face, at the very least.  It insults any US distiller who is making absinthe correctly, and sends the wrong signal to many people.  Someone needs to hammer them, IMO regarding this descriptor. It's not American-style...it's what "someone made in his basement without knowing how to make real absinthe-style."  



#23 Absomphe

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Posted 21 May 2014 - 02:57 PM

Indeed.

 

It's definitely not the absinthe equivalent to an American style barley wine or imperial stout, although, something tells me these guys were influenced (misguidedly) by such broadening of beer style interpretations.


Yes, I'm Krinkles the Clown on an absinthe a beer bender.

You got a problem with that?


#24 Zman (Marc Bernhard)

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Posted 21 May 2014 - 04:33 PM

Scott, I agree with you. However, as a producer I have to be careful as to what I say about another producer.


If you don't like anise at all, you're not likely to care for any decent absinthe, as absinthe is an anise flavored drink. It's kind of like asking if there are any good beers that don't taste like hops or malt.----Hiram

Marc Bernhard, owner and Master Distiller of Pacific Distillery LLC
Maker of Pacifique Absinthe and Voyager Single Batch Distilled Gin
Woodinville, WA, USA
www.pacificdistillery.com


#25 Jack Griffin

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Posted 23 May 2014 - 03:38 AM

Brian and Marc T. chimed in on the FB thread, and were told they were wrong.   :fork:  He is not the first distiller to shoot himself in the foot, I suspect.



#26 Alan Moss

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Posted 23 May 2014 - 05:10 AM

Interesting to note, Scott, that I don't see them using the phrase "American style absinthe" anywhere else in their communication, or on their retailer's pages.

 

A Google search of "American style absinthe" should put them off the idea of using that phrase. It either seems to mean Le Tourment Vert or is a disparaging and inaccurate phrase meaning not as much wormwood or thujone as European style.

 

Oh yes, Butterfly uses the phrase too.


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#27 Jack Griffin

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Posted 23 May 2014 - 06:54 AM

Yes, and it should, as Butterfly WAS a genuine American absinthe before the US ban.  Brian and I added some polite suggestions today, and it's up to them.

They clearly have potential, it would be a shame to see them marketing something less than they are capable of.



#28 Trinity Absinthe

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Posted 13 June 2014 - 08:46 AM

A friend at the Steampunk World's Fair this weekend, had a new, unopened bottle of Doc's. It looked natural, so my hopes were high. Upon opening the bottle, though not excited, it had enough aroma of absinthe to be marginal, however, all we got were oily trails, no matter how slowly we dripped... No louche at all. Zero. The flavor? Does it matter? Sorry. The maker clearly has no understanding of absinthe whatsoever. Too bad. Another one people will buy, and never trust absinthe again. A shame.

 

As is always the case with these things, the more inexperienced customers try absinthe of poor quality, the less likely they are to try any other brand, regardless of its reputation. It's unfortunate, but most general customers will only try a category once, any additional sampling takes some amount of persuading. Think of all the people who have had that one terrible tequila fueled night and swear off all tequila for good rather than, you know, exhibit personal restraint. If only I had a dollar for every customer who has shared a "backpacking through Prague" absinthe nightmare with me.




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