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Jade Blanchette

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Just got some Blanchette. It's not as yellow as I feared, just the slightest tint of straw. You kind of have to put another blanche next to it to notice the difference.

 

Smells like a wormwood bomb. Tastes like a wormwood bomb. It's actually crafted pretty well, no process problems are evident in the taste or aroma. I notice none of that "caramelized" thing some people are saying. It's somewhat creamy, and most floral notes come overwhelmingly from wormwood flowers. A LOT of wormwood flowers. I imagine the original version was taken with a lot of sugar. If you like wormwood, get this one. It isn't balanced, but it's an interesting take on a blanche.

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Perhaps it's one of those things that age takes care of. The tailsy and caramely tastes I noticed were very subtle, but the yellow was not. I did notice that by the end, it didn't seem as yellow as when I first opened it.

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Actually I suspect this may be from the 2nd bottling which may have been improved slightly. Didn't the initial release sell out pretty quickly but they got a 2nd batch in shortly thereafter, or am I making something up? In any case it's drinkable but it doesn't taste like you'd expect a blanche to taste.

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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:

I wonder why:

Rauschenberg_Monogram_Small.jpg

"Robert Rauschenberg's "Monogram" (1955-9) takes the abstract painting off the wall and puts it back on the horizontal. Then it puts a goat and a tire on top of the canvas. By doing this--by mixing the high heroism of Pollock's abstraction with a taxidermist's trophy and a piece of trash--he divests the painting of all its mystique. But not its mystery.'

 

The mystery is why this took four years to complete, and why someone would ruin a perfectly good goat.

(Sadly van der Rohe designed half of the MFA where I once worked, which didn't fit with the rest of the building)
His forté.
As for the Bauhaus, Kandinsky was intriguing, and I do like the Wagenfeld lamp...
It's entirely a matter of taste, but the lamp represents exactly what I don't like about the Bauhaus: designs that were originally intended for industrial use spilling over into the domestic. All those clean lines, simple geometry, lack of organic ornamentation... I used to think the International Movement killed the modern sense of design, but I see it gradually coming back. Fortunately it was just an unpleasant interlude, an intermission if you will, in the symphony of design, art and architecture.

 

 

I can't wait to try the Blanchette. There's a bottle on the way for the party this Saturday.

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Wow. I got mine yesterday from LdF, and had my first glass, and my second and third, last night. It was an education for me, because it had a very powerful presence of what has always been my favorite hint in other absinthes. I guess this means I'm a wormwood lover.

 

I just loved it, and now that little 50cl bottle is starting to look like a a sample bottle, a tease. I hope it lasts until the promised litre bottles come out. It could replace the FG as my nightly drink.

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I can't wait to try the Blanchette. There's a bottle on the way for the party this Saturday.

 

I wish I could be there, I could tell you stories about the Rauschenberg exhibit that would cause a Blanchette nasal douche.

 

QUOTE:(Sadly van der Rohe designed half of the MFA where I once worked, which didn't fit with the rest of the building)

 

His forté

 

Say No More.

 

The original 1924 building, and the Van der Rohe addition, grafted on to the ass end. :laf:

post-35-1142974314.jpg

post-35-1142974323.jpg

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I went home at lunch and had another glass of Blanchette just to make sure my tastebuds weren't all screwey last night (I had Thai food and sometimes that fucks up my palate).

 

Now I actually do taste that caramelized thing AT was talking about. Tastes kind of like Cracker Jacks, but not in a burnt way, more in a sweet butter popcorn way. I detect no hint of tails, empyreuma or other process flaw though. Not sure where that slight caramel thing comes from but it's not bad, just fucking weird in an absinthe.

 

I'm also going to take a stab at the back lable which mentions a secret ingredient and play "guess how many marbles are in the jar". Maybe one of the secret ingredients is Fenegreek? Either that or the wormwood is really a distinctive cultivar, as it has this metallic tinge to it at first taste which is a little bothersome. After that, though, it mellows out and is pretty drinkable. The back label also says there's fennel in it, and I don't taste any fennel, so what the hell do I know?

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Well, here it is eleven days later, and that Blanchette snuck up on me, and became my current favorite commercial absinthe. I don't know when it started happening, but I'm just going to go with it. I think that really, the wormwood is overbalanced, and I just happen to love it that way. I mean I don't claim it to be what "perfectly balanced absinthe should taste like". But right now, it's the haunting flavour I can't get out of my head.

 

I drink less absinthe, in general, than I used to drink of my bourbon. But as a bourbon drinker, I never felt myself actively missing the taste of my drink on days when I wasn't drinking. Many times during the day, I'll think about absinthe, and the memory of the taste washes across my senses. And right now, it tastes like the Blanchette.

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Yeah, I had a big glass last night and I actually really enjoyed it. Now that the bottle had a little time to breathe the wormwood is smoother and less strident than when I first opened it.

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If one tastes enough of any flavour, it will in time become so familiar that it begins to taste normal.

At that point, the other flavors one used to prefer, now taste wrong.

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Yeah, I had a big glass last night and I actually really enjoyed it.  Now that the bottle had a little time to breathe the wormwood is smoother and less strident than when I first opened it.

That happened with mine too. Bummer, because I really liked the in-your-face-wormwood. Still good though.

 

I'm having some in my coffee at the moment. I was surprised and delighted at the herbal cloud that wafted up when I added it to the hot coffee. This turned out to be a Good Idea™.

 

I don't taste the fennel either, which in this absinthe isn't a bad thing. I'm not going to play the guessing-game with the herbs, but I have some strong theories.

 

Also, it seems like in every bottle of Jade I get, the "chocolate" smell/taste that I identified early on as a Jade "signature" and which I at first attributed to the base used, seems to become less and less distinct. I'd have to taste a recently bottled NO or VS65 to confirm further theories. At any rate, that's good news for me, since that smell/taste is about the only characteristic of the Jades I don't care for. There's less of it in the Blanchette than any of the others.

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Speaking of a slight yellow tinge, I recieved La Capricieuse today and it also has a very slight straw color to it. I guess this must not be so bad. Have yet to try it though.

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Wow! I’m encouraged. Just had the Blanchette last night, and if it’s a wormwood bomb, then my faith has been renewed. I had just about decided that the particular background flavor that I’d found distasteful in the Jades and HGs was due to the wormwood, which is ostensively significantly higher than the Bleues or the Eichelberger that I find to not have that particular taste. The Montmartre, in which I also don’t detect any, may also be from either a lower content or a stale source on the first run, I’m told. The implications, tho, were disturbing, in that I’d be more of a pastis/arak kind of guy than a true absintheur, unless the lower wormwood absinthes are a valid niche.

 

But I detected none of that in the Blanchette. The word that came immediately to mind was ‘juicy fruit’, and if that is what everyone is on about, then it may be just a question of wormwood source and cultivar. It may also be the inclusion of the flowers, altho I’m told that those impart more of a grapefruit/citrusy kind of flavor. But at any rate, I’ve been given a ray of hope here by the Blanchette.

 

So, unless it’s now fair game to add butterscotch syrup and such to COs to market a product, kazoos to Ted and Combier for making a tasty blanche with high wormwood content, especially if it’s from purely herbal content, be it cultivar or flowers or Fenugreek, as Gatsby mentioned above, with its maple type flavor.

 

I also didn’t detect any fennel as such, either, but I assume that’s because of being a French marketed product.

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Somehow, I doubt there's any actual "Juicy Fruit" wormwood in the Blanchette (unless Ted has had some kind absinthe epiphany), but the more I hear about the stuff, the more I'm tempted to order a bottle.

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I also didn’t detect any fennel as such, either, but I assume that’s because of being a French marketed product.

 

Urban legend alert.

 

You'll detect bucketloads of fennel in the Blanche de Fougerolles, even though it's a French product.

 

The amount of fenchone can be kept lower than 5.5 mg/l (the French limit) merely by selecting the fennel cultivar and origin² with care, without the need to tamper with the recipe.

 

--

² Mediterannean climates yields fennels with less fenchone; it's quite probable the historical Gard fennel was low in fenchone.

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I am amazed at all the accolades given to the Blanchette. I found it to be overcooked (distillation pushed too far). I could only finish half my glass before sinking it.

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I am amazed at all the accolades given to the Blanchette. I found it to be overcooked (distillation pushed too far). I could only finish half my glass before sinking it.

 

Must've had a different batch - I would have been able to say that for all the other Jades, but not the Blanchette.

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I am amazed at all the accolades given to the Blanchette. I found it to be overcooked (distillation pushed too far). I could only finish half my glass before sinking it.

 

Perhaps it's that overcooking that people are liking. It wasn't prominent enough to make my tastebuds go "blecch" and sink it, but there is something "off" in there, which I eventually got used to. Normally pushing it too far makes me cringe, whereas this made me scratch my head, but I ended up liking that weird taste.

 

Dr. Verte, do you know if your sample came from the first bottling? I think all the bottles have dates on them, I'm just wondering if there was a 2nd bottling made. Mine is yellow, but not as yellow as described by some. If the yellowing is decreasing from one batch to the next, that seems to suggest that it is overcooked, as opposed to being the previously hypothesized issue with the wormwood seeds.

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I've had two samples. One was sent to me by a friend from Europe, the other was supplied by our forum host here, so I cannot identify as to which batch they came from. The flaw, as I see it, could be due to over-cooking, the still not quite cleaned from whatever was distilled before, or the ingredients. It's all a mystery to me. All's I know is that I found it flawed, and didn't like it, from either sample.

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I think all the bottles have dates on them,

 

Mine doesn't. It also can hardly be called yellow (there is a yellow tinge visible in the bottle, but it's hard to see whether the glass for that bottle contributes; in a glass, it appears perfectly transparent, though a glass is obviously narrower).

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Somehow, I doubt there's any actual "Juicy Fruit" wormwood in the Blanchette (unless Ted has had some kind absinthe epiphany)...

Actually, the renowned 'juicy fruit' absinthe is an English cultivar, so Ted could very well have access to it.

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Somehow, I doubt there's any actual "Juicy Fruit" wormwood in the Blanchette (unless Ted has had some kind absinthe epiphany)...

Actually, the renowned 'juicy fruit' absinthe is an English cultivar, so Ted could very well have access to it.

 

Access, and a willingness to experiment, are two different critters.

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Why not? The Blanchette is not based on any belle epoque recipe I’m aware of. It’s not even part of the official Jade lineup. Did they have butterscotch confectionaire back then? ;)

 

The amount of fenchone can be kept lower than 5.5 mg/l (the French limit) merely by selecting the fennel cultivar and origin² with care, without the need to tamper with the recipe.

But that's how I've been distinguishing the fennel anethole from the anise, since fenchone makes me trip balz.

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Why not?  The Blanchette is not based on any belle epoque recipe I’m aware of.

 

 

 

True, and neither is the NO, so I guess anything is possible.

 

Unfortunately, burnt trumps fruity every time, so it's probably a moot point. :P

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