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Brooks

Jade Blanchette

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Philistine signing in. I put this question to the absinthe community at large:

 

Why is the Blanchette's yellow tinge the cause of so much hand-wringing? I need a credible explanation — something that will make me say: "Ah-ha. Yes, of course. Silly me."

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Why is the Blanchette's yellow tinge the cause of so much hand-wringing? I need a credible explanation — something that will make me say: "Ah-ha. Yes, of course. Silly me."

Good question, Brooks. In the bottle I bought, the yellow tinge is very subtle indeed; not the daffodil yellow that the picture I posted earlier had suggested. I agree there's no rational behind the antipathy - yes, it's neither a verte nor a blanche in colouring, but as far as I can tell, it's rather pleasant on the pallette. Isn't that most, if not all, of what matters?

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Philistine signing in.  I put this question to the absinthe community at large:

 

Why is the Blanchette's yellow tinge the cause of so much hand-wringing? I need a credible explanation — something that will make me say: "Ah-ha. Yes, of course. Silly me."

 

Absinthe fresh from the still should be crystal clear. It does not matter whether the distillate is destined to be a verte or blanche. Usually a yellow or brownish tinge to it means that the distillation was pushed to far, and some of the tails (phlegms) have come through. Another possibility is that the still was not properly cleaned prior to use, and some of the residue from an earlier distillation made it through. There is also a theory that absinthe made with wormwood harvested too early (with flowers with unripe seeds). I, however, doubt that, but have not experienced it personally.

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Because it is a Blanche, and a Blanche should be completely clear. A yellow tinge like this could be due to a flaw in it's production, like not cutting the distillation off at the right time and the "tails" tainting the final product. I also read over at fee verte that wormwood flowers picked to soon could also impart a yellow tinge, which is also a production flaw. Although taste doesn't really suggest either of these. Possibly it could be due to the absinthe being aged in oak for a very short time. I don't know, it still tastes pretty damn good.

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My guess would be a combination of things. I definately smell / taste tails in it (see my review on Fee Verte), but from what I've seen, only a small portion of tails have a yellowish tint. It seems unlikely to me that going a little too far into the tails would tint an entire batch.

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I tasted this product a couple of weeks ago. I believe that the yellow tint is coming from the wormwood. I have seen this happen when wormwood containing a large proportion of flowers is used. This is why I believe it is better to use only the leaves of the Absinthe plant whilst distilling a blanche.

 

Of course if you "Gassify" it, the yellow will go away.

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I'm glad I posed the question, and thank you all for your very interesting answers. Just a few more questions for les professeurs:

 

Suppose you were asked to participate in a blindfolded absinthe tasting. Let's say you really liked the taste, mouthfeel, balance, and so forth, of a particular absinthe.

 

Would you think less of that absinthe if, after removing the blindfold, you discovered that its color or louching qualities were "off", according to your criteria? Would you be less inclined to recommend that absinthe? Less inclined to purchase it for yourself?

 

I respect your high standards. And you can send those phlegm-tainted rejects to me, COD (mailing address available on request).

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I'd have to say that it would have to lose points, in my book, because the color and the louche are an intrinsic part of the overall aesthetic of an absinthe.

 

Also, it's unlikely that the mouthfeel would be up to snuff if the louche were inadequate, because in all probability the absinthe would be suffering from a deficit of herbiage, particularly anise.

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I wouldn't be disappointed. That's the point of blind test afterall. To remove the visual which can sway the senses.

 

Personally, I want to end up drinking the absinthe that taste the best per my preferences regardless. Although I enoy a good louche, I won't be able to focus much on it when all is said and done anyway :devil:

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HELLO! :devil:

 

Les bons professeurs leave me in their dust. Not to be difficult, but the latitude of acceptablilty for absinthe strikes me as awfully narrow. What am I not getting?

 

Consigning an otherwise palatable blanche to the bargain heap because of its yellow tint is like saying that a four-star French restaurant renders pizza meaningless, or that Giotto negates Pollack.

 

You like the Blanchette, or you don't. I do like it, and see no reason not to take it at face value — phlegmy colouration and all.

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The tails definately hinder the taste, whether they're a cause of the yellow or not. All in all, the color isn't that important, except in the total aesthetic sense. This certainly isn't a bad absinthe. I think the contention most people have is because of all people who can make a good blanche, it should be the guy who's spent however many years studying vintage absinthe on the chemical level and has access to original stills. All things considered, it's about on the level of Kübler. Kübler has less wormwood flavour, but less tails (the 53 at least).

 

It's kind of like a sports car that doesn't have working windshield wipers. Sure, the engine works fine, and as long as you don't drive when it's raining, it's great. For the money, though, it'd be nice if all the minor details were in order as well. And with absinthe, I think aesthetic appearance is a valid factor.

 

I would love to see the entire Jade line cleaned up and brought to their maximum potential, but for now they're just fairly decent absinthes with alot of potential.

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For what its worth, I think I recall hearing it mentioned that this is technically not a Jade product but rather a Combier product that they did more or less on their own based on something that they produced years ago. Or something along those lines.

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It's advertised as a Jade.

 

. . .Like our other Jade absinthes, Blanchette is crafted entirely by hand in the antique copper absinthe stills in the Combier distillery.

 

Apparently, the pound to dollar converter they have linked to the website is not working. It will not allow the cost to be entered for conversion.

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Without meaning to be difficult, I have to say that the latitude of acceptablilty for absinthe strikes me as awfully narrow. What am I not getting?
I agree. In the end it's mostly about taste and aroma. Appearance—while an indicator of good production technique and usually, therefore, taste—is not enough alone to condemn an otherwise perfectly enjoyable absinthe.
It seems to me that ... is like saying that a four-star French restaurant renders pizza meaningless, or that Giotto negates Pollack.
Giotto does negate Pollack; but then so does just about anyone else who could actually paint. :devil:

 

On talc and the "baby powder" smell/taste: talc is an odorless and essentially tasteless mineral. The classic baby powder smell is a mixture of fragrances. My sense jury is still out on whether hyssop is responsible for that particular fragrance in absinthe.

 

On "absinthe seminars': that's a good idea and one which I've always thought would be a good thing to help people learn what they're tasting. I'll see if I can source some single herbal distillates for our future events.

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Ah, here it is. Earlier in this thread, no less.

 

label based on original; done, with advise given to, but without supervision, by the distillery.

 

Maybe they just associated it with the Jade name because of it coming from the same distillery or something?

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No, sir, you are not speaking greek. What I mean to say, is that while it is advertised as a Jade product, it is simply interesting to note that Combier produced this product more or less on their own. As to whether or not this has anything to do with the yellowish tint, or of its general quality, I don't know. However, the Blanchette thus could be the product of a slightly different distilling technique.

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Giotto does negate Pollack; but then so does just about anyone else who could actually paint. :devil:

Boldly put, chief! :harhar: You know what I'm saying.

 

When any line of talk sits too grandly in its chair (ankles crossed, white-gloved hands folded neatly in lap) I chafe. I'm all for excellence and good craftsmanship. I also think it's wise to stay loose in the joints.

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Giotto does negate Pollack; but then so does just about anyone else who could actually paint. :devil:

Boldly put, chief! :harhar: You know what I'm saying.

I do, but Pollack is a sore spot with me. So is Rauschenberg, Gropius, Mees van der Rohe, and all those other Bauhaus* bastards. *grumble*
When any line of talk sits too grandly in its chair (ankles crossed, white-gloved hands folded neatly in lap) I chafe. I'm all for excellence and good craftsmanship. I also think it's wise to stay loose in the joints.
Indeed.

 

 

 

 

 

*Not the band.

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The light yellow color : I received the very first bottles of Blanchette mid december for my shop. Blanchette was very clear and I didn't notice a yellow color.

Perhaps the yellow appeared after few weeks.

 

I had the same thing with 2 bottles of Blanche de Fougerolles, few weeks after opening : I had it cristal clear and now, it's as light yellow as Blanchette.

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I do, but Pollack is a sore spot with me.  So is Rauschenberg, Gropius, Mees van der Rohe, and all those other Bauhaus* bastards.  *grumble**Not the band.

 

 

Rauschenberg is another P.T. Barnum, we did one of his exhibits, and I never laughed so much in my life at the attendees. :laf: (Sadly van der Rohe designed half of the MFA where I once worked, which didn't fit with the rest of the building)

 

As for the Bauhaus, Kandinsky was intriguing, and I do like the Wagenfeld lamp...& the old fuckers in the similarly named band. (Since I'm edging into that elder territory) ;)

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label based on original; done, with advise given to, but without supervision, by the distillery.

Maybe they just associated it with the Jade name because of it coming from the same distillery or something?

What am I missing, I thought Peter was just saying that the label design was done by Combier, the juice inside is Jade, no?

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Finally tried the Blanchette. It's good, but there's definitely something odd there that I didn't notice with any other absinthe that I've tried. Something that tastes... not "off", but not quite right either.

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