I was pleasantly surprised by Angelique, especially after reading other opinions on this singular green offering from the distiller of Clandestine (my favourite blanche/bleue). I was expecting a detonation of bitter wormwood on the tongue, but instead was assailed by a bouquet of fragrances. It contains a perfume-like, incredibly distinctive floral aroma which sets it apart from its counterparts, which I surmise to be part of the Angelica-forward profile.
Those who dislike wormwood on the attack (such as most of the EPs) should find Angelique a treat, which in my opinion boasts, quite unquestionably, a sweeter, more complex flavour profile than the Roquette or Authentique for example. The addition of sugar really opens it up, so I'd advise not skipping this step, but rather sugaring to taste. I took points off due to my detection of an inferior quality alcohol, probably grain based instead of marc spirit, which had a noticeable chemical taste (like most other spirits, I may add) and left me feeling the buzz rather quickly. I cannot recommend this absinthe more: it is fairly priced and extremely delicious - drinkable everyday.
Appearance: Very green, almost emerald.
Aroma: Complex sweet bouquet
Flavour: Smooth, silky, complex, with very little spiciness obscuring the herb profile
Finish: Ordinary and fleeting
Color is a very, very pale green. Pretty - but lighter than most vertes I've had. Smell is familiar and very traditional. I find that with absinthe, the aroma is one of the best characteristics to judge since it is often indicative of the taste and finish to come. It louche with lots of billowing clouds - forms quite quickly to a thick and quite pale color as expected from initial appearances. Almost white. Flavor is solid - traditional and balanced. No complaints from me. Wonderful!
Appearance: A very natural, light, and fresh olive green. It's clear and very clean in appearance.
Louche: Slightly thick but an attractive color. The edges are sky blue with a green tinted hue and highlights of orange in the body.
Aroma: Very anise and hyssop forward. There is a wormwood scent and a slight fennel note as well. Fresh and clean but also a bit light and weak in the aroma.
Flavor: A surprising balance of wormwood, anise, and hyssop compliment a smooth and somewhat weighty mouthfeel. A tad basic in flavor and light as well but very well done. The wormwood piques on the back palate in a curious way indicating grande wormwood taking a more prominent role than usually.
Finish: The spice and bitter tone of the wormwood ramp up at first and numb the tounge a decent amount. The finish is very long and ends with some pleasing citrus notes.
Overall: This is a very nice and crisp absinthe. It is simple but very enjoyable. The wormwood use is a nice surprise as well. The only downside I can see is the lightness of its character.
*Received as sample in absinthe explore set from absinthes.com
Appearance - Beautiful, clear green. Nothing spectacular, but correct, natural, and attractive.
Louche - Very nice to watch, but a little opaque in comparison to some other offerings.
Aroma - Good balance of herbal notes and anise, but there is something else there that is more difficult to identify. It is definitely a floral scent, but not sure what it is - it seems strangely similar to an artificial citrus (lemon/lime) like that found in sports drinks.
Flavor - While some herbal-centric absinthes seem highly complex and balanced, this one seems a little "off." The wormwood is upfront, but has no direct complements from the other herbs and very little anise (again, this was from a sample, so I'm not sure if the different versions may be coming into play).
Finish - There didn't seem to be much of a finish with this absinthe. First you taste it, then you don't. It goes away very quickly.
Overall - Of the ten sampled absinthes, this fell in the bottom two. While I can see the appeal of a strong wormwood flavor, this one doesn't really do it well in comparison to other, more complex absinthes.
*Edit: Angelique now has far less wormwood being used in its coloration, hence the huge difference in my impressions on bitterness, and those in the other review. It is a vast improvement according to those who have had both.
I have to say, this is quite delicious. It does require sugar for me, as there is a slight bitterness, but it is not objectionable. It is in fact, a welcomed, powerful presence. Prepared at 4:1 with 1 sugar.
Appearance: a natural pretty light green with a tiny touch of gold. The color and thickness after the louche is very pretty as well.
Louche: Even forming, thick without being milky, and frankly, perfect.
Aroma: Clean, fresh and crisp. Plenty of strong Wormwood, fennel and anise; in fact, it reminded me of being in Claude-Alain's distillery. I opened the bottle, and was taken back to Boveresse. The simple, true absinthe aroma was undeniable, and very welcome.
Flavor: Clean, crisp, balanced, and delicious. There is a slightly bitter and in your face wormwood, but it is quality, and I didn't mind at all. The fennel is sweet and grabs you, and the superb anise is perfectly in the mix. With one sugar, it all came together, with a candy-like personality. I likely would have not enjoyed it as much without the sugar. I did not find an excessive bitterness that overwhelmed in any way.
Finish: Quite nice; complex, tingly, layered. The mouthfeel is rich and velvety without being too thick. A modest but appropriate linger. There is a tiny bit of tongue numbing in the finish, but it is not objectionable.