What to say about Jade Nouvelle Orleans? As far as I can tell, this is as good as Absinthe gets, and I'm just not sure how to improve on it-- whether this is an expression of my inexperience (9 real absinthes and counting), or it's really that good-- we'll see... Special occasions, any time I feel like taking the challenge of taking lots of time and truly appreciating a great absinthe-- this is what I'll reach for unless/until I actually find something even better.
Appearance: It's beautiful, jewel-like, as green as truly naturally colored absinthe probably gets-- perfectly transparent lovely green... if it weren't real, it would be my dream of what Absinthe should look like.
Louche: Let's see-- "defined, highly opalescent, three-dimensional" - check. Translucent, lovely, great highlights... I've got a good imagination, but I still can't imagine it getting better as I'm looking at the fully-louched glass.
Aroma: I'm torn between giving it a 5 or a 4.5, but I'm not a good enough judge of scent to tell what's perfect or not-- and if there's any area that's great but not quite perfect, this is probably it.
Flavor/Mouthfeel: best absinthe I've ever tasted. Need I say more?
Finish: No burn, no bitter, just delightfully lasting great taste.
Overall: Again, I think I've got a pretty good imagination... but if Jade N.O. weren't real, it would be the absinthe of my dreams...
In closing-- as I commented on another review, there will still be plenty of days that I'm the mood for "Jade Light" (aka Lucid) instead of the full Jade... but when I'm in the mood & have the time for the full serious drink, this is now my top go-to. I love it.
As others have noted - this is an absinthe unique amoung the Jade line. The core of the absinthe holds many similarities to its sisters... but that is where the similarities end. Incredibly floral in aroma and taste with a neat color which is much greener than most. Overall - it as an absolutely bright and delicious offering with a wonderful mouthfeel that I'd be happy to have any time.
Color: Greener side of peridot. Very clean, clear, natural and bright. As with most Jades this is a very nice color.
Louche: Very pretty louche. The Jades seem to be excelling in this area quite well. The pacing is great and the clouds roll into existence. Thick but still translucent louche at the final ratio. Really well done.
Aroma: A big display of the main three with subtle hints of lemon balm and others just around the corner. Sweet smelling with an earthy thickness.
Flavor: Wonderful thick and rich taste. The flavor easily put this absinthe in my favorites. Starts sweet with the big three again and reveals more herbs just afterwards. It plays well on all parts of the tongue and is even more complex than it smells. Amazing!
Finish: The other herbs display here quite a bit. The original taste is left over and sticks with the finish while other flavors dance on top. Starts and ends sweet but both beginning and end are a different flavor. Really cool effect and one of the best finishes I've experienced so far.
Overall: Absolutely fantastic absinthe. Just a dip outside the norm and very well done. I may have to keep a bottle of this on hand at all times despite the cost. A good showcase of knowledge and creativity. A taste that is right up my alley and a finish that is out of this world!
Louche: Really nice swirling oils, slowly building thicker and more opaque from the bottom of the glass. Once louched, it's a luminous moonlight green, with fiery oranges. Absolutely lovely.
Aroma: I'm first hit with sugar, anise and alcohol...a hint of the outdoors after rain. Sweet and bright, then wormwood and lemon balm.
Flavor: Feels very icy and silky, and has many light and soft flavors that blend together wonderfully, along with what I can only describe as an essence of "bayou" that is in no way bothersome.
Finish: Warm and spiced, happy and tingly, with a chalky sugar taste/feel.
Overall: This absinthe feels a lot less like something that is just drank, and more of an experience to drink. I like absinthes that attempt to do something different while still remaining clearly absinthe-flavored, and I feel this absinthe has done that well, without the uniqueness of it being too distracting. I greatly enjoy this absinthe.
Color: A bright, attractive peridot green. A slight blue tinge appears when louched.
Louche: Pretty thick and opaque. Attractive. I wouldn't say it gets there too quick by any means but it could build slower.
Aroma: Very complex and interesting. There are so many things going on in there it's hard to isolate them. It has a noticeable fragrant wormwood presence along with of course the anise. Right up there along with them are unique notes I struggle to put a finger on. I think I can detect sea salt and a mustard-like tang in there, along with other spices reminiscent of a Christmas ale (I'm not the only one to draw this comparison). Not sure I'd call it room filling (it may depend on the size of the room), but you can be several feet away and still take it all in. Extremely delightful.
Flavor: Naturally everything I spoke of regarding the aroma is reflected in the flavor. It's very complex while balanced. Nothing overpowers the other allowing the wide variety of unique characteristics to take their turn on your taste buds. The wormwood presence is forward. Herbaceous, earthy and spicy. Again I'm getting that mustard tang and the Christmas spice, though they are more subdued in the palate than they are on the nose. Delicious.
Finish: Long and satisfying.
Overall: My favorite Jade and one of my favorite absinthe's period. This is something I'd like to have on hand at all times. It is very idiosyncratic and won't appeal to everybody, but to those it does appeal to it can become quite an addicting beverage.