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Gwydion Stone

Absinthe Marteau Verte Classique - Swiss Release

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... I want to see 20 people try and top him, and the public can decide who wins. Hiram, I think, would agree with that set-up.
I'm confident in my product, and believe it will do well, but if 20 makers top it, that means there's a lot of really good absinthe on the market; everybody wins. I can live with being in the top twenty-one.

Exactly my point. Everyone wins. Especially the consumer, in an open and free, lazzie faire society. Take note, Jaded Prol. The workers, the owner/designers, and the consumers ALL win here.

 

We consumers win (and salivate) the most though!

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Every product must stand or fall on it's own merits regardless of the maker.

 

Please keep your feral apostrophes at home. You've just infected a bunch of posts in this thread.

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Thanks Sixer, or maybe I should say thank's.

 

Especially the consumer, in an open and free, lazzie faire society

 

It's called craftsmanship and the competition for well-crafted products is good and not dependent on the so-called free market. What Capitalism does is to see that there is a market and pump out cheap artificially colored crap by the metric ton for the masses at a price real absinthe can't compete with. The best absinthe will always be a niche product just like the best Scotch. Craft defies Capitalism because you can't fake it on the cheap. The costs cannot be cut to increase profits and it can't be made well in sweatshops by disgruntled slaves. Many of us will get to taste them for free at fests -- some without even a cover charge.

 

I hope to see many new micro-distilleries coming out with good absinthes. No two will be the same and this competition is ridiculous. Let a hundred flowers bloom!

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Why do so many people feel justified in demanding proprietary info?

Czechsinth has muddied the water so much that phrases like "traditional french method" have little meaning. I know what you mean when you use that term but many others would not. There is a big difference between between giving general information and prorietary information. For example what would be the issue in stating somthing like the following:

"Made with (organtic) Grand Wormwood, Anise, Fennel and other herbs and spices. Distilled after maceration. All colouration derived from herbs."

There is no way anyone could reproduce a produsct from this information but a consumer could make a more informed choice.

 

Movak

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what would be the issue in stating somthing like the following:

"Made with (organtic) Grand Wormwood, Anise, Fennel and other herbs and spices. Distilled after maceration. All colouration derived from herbs."

You're right, but what was said above I believe was
There is a difference between knowing precisely what those ingredients are and knowing a proprietary recipe.
Emphasis mine. I was responding primarily to the FV thread that Marcel linked to in this post. I'd have no problem making a statement like yours there, but we'll have to wait for that. ;)

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That includes quality ingredients, aroma, looks and taste. There is a difference between knowing precisely what those ingredients are and knowing a proprietary recipe.
There is??? :blink: How do you figure? Ever hear of a secret ingredient? A maker can release as much information as he pleases, but isn't, and shouldn't be, required to give any.
Even given the same recipe, it is very doubtful that anyone else can duplicate a particular absinthe. Heck, it's hard enough for anyone to make the exact brew twice and everyone's equipment and techniques are individual.
That's beside the point. Tell it to Coca-Cola. :laf:

While I used the Coca-Cola example myself at FV, it is only fair to note that every can of Coke has all the ingredients listed. An ingredient list is not the same as a recipe.

 

There are no "secret ingredients" in Coke.

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If Pepsi (or any other major soda manufacturer) wanted to know what is in Coca-Cola, they would analize it ten ways from Sunday with GC, etc.

 

Eventually they Could make an identical product without the 'secret' recipe.

 

It is not so much the ingredients that are a secret, as the ratio of the ingredients. The proposed sale was not for the 'secret Ingredient', it was for the 'Recipe'.

 

It is the Recipe that is the Secret!

 

Same applies to Absinthe. With very few exceptions the ingredients are pretty straightforward. The exact proportions and the process (specific still and the operation, coloration process) are what make the absinthe unique.

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Certainly.

 

Which is why, in my opinion, the Coca-Cola 'Secret' is just a marketing ploy. Pepsi Co does not want to make a Coca-Cola clone. They want to compete with Coca-Cola with their own recipe and convince the world that it is better.

 

As far as Absinthe goes, look at how difficult a time Ted has had reproducting BE Absinthe. No discredit to him for his effort as he has made some fine products. However, even with GC analysis and all his experience he has not nailed the nuances of of PF products from near 100 years ago.

 

This is where GC analysis is not enough. Coca-Cola is a mixture of flavoring ingredients, no more.

 

Absinthe is a distilled product. Distillation filters some natural components while passing others and further modifying still others (chemical changes take place during distillation).

 

Recipes with the exact ratio of constituants are kept secret for good reason, however unlike making Soda, in making Absinthe the recipe is not sufficient to make a clone. So even there I'm not too sure that it is really necessary to guard the recipe.

 

Of course, there is always the possibility someone could take your recipe and do you one better.

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The chartreuse recipe is only known by 3 monks sworn to secrecy!

 

 

The example of Ted trying to clone Pernod fils is a good one. Even if he had the proprietary recipe, it would take years to come close because the exact herbs and their sources are not abvailable and there are lost techniques. Every maker has his style and Ted's absinthe can be identified in blind tasting against any and all others -- same for other makers.

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This may be a poor example, but years ago I worked on a chocolate chip cookie recipe that won blue ribbons year after year. My friends occasionally asked me for the recipe which I gladly shared. Theirs never tasted like mine. It wasn't until I told my best friend exactly what kind of flour, sugar, etc that I used and how I baked them did they come out the same (and that was really weird). I can't even imagine how many variables there are in making absinthe, but I can guess it is a HELLUVA lot more difficult than making chocolate chip cookies!

 

I guess my point is, anyone can figure out the basics in a recipe, but the one who develops it has the option of divulging the tiny details...or not. And it is THEIR option.

 

Secret absinthe recipe...let me see, There is wormwood... :dry:

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As far as Absinthe goes, look at how difficult a time Ted has had reproducting BE Absinthe. No discredit to him for his effort as he has made some fine products. However, even with GC analysis and all his experience he has not nailed the nuances of of PF products from near 100 years ago.

 

No, but if you let Ted's stuff age for 100 years in the bottle, it might be pretty damn close. Aging is all about developing nuance.

 

The chartreuse recipe is only known by 3 monks sworn to secrecy!

 

It's just a marketing ploy ;)

 

The example of Ted trying to clone Pernod fils is a good one. Even if he had the proprietary recipe, it would take years to come close because the exact herbs and their sources are not abvailable and there are lost techniques.

 

Again, the vintage that we taste today is around 100 years old (sometimes younger, but I digress). When it was fresh outta the bottle after distillation, it may or may not have been just like what we drink now. There is no way to know unless you can find someone who was there and tried it fresh back in the day.

In regard to technique, you might be right, but it's not rocket science to macerate some herbs in a base and make a wash, and then distill it in an alembic. But I get what you're saying.

 

Edit: On rereading my post, it sounds like I am saying distilling is really easy. I'm not saying that at all. Like winemaking (which I know quite well), the basics are simple, but fine tuning them is difficult, and the more you magnify everything, the more complex it gets. What I meant was that the science has advanced some in the past 100 years and Ted is a good chemist and if anybody can replicate stuff, it's probably him.

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Again, the vintage that we taste today is around 100 years old (sometimes younger, but I digress).

Some samples taste as if they had been distilled two years ago. The "very green" Pernod Fils 1914 bottles do, to give just one example.

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Not to digress, but is there any way to check the actual age of the "very green" 1914? Perhaps, unbeknown to anyone, those particular bottles were indeed filled two years ago?

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Perhaps, unbeknown to anyone, those particular bottles were indeed filled two years ago?

 

Oxy has more integrity than that and I don't think anyone alive can produce absinthe that good -- yet. If so, there would be no competition possible. Maybe in a couple of years . . .

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Some samples taste as if they had been distilled two years ago. The "very green" Pernod Fils 1914 bottles do, to give just one example.

 

Some might seem like they were just distilled -- but they weren't. 100 years is a good bit o' aging. I'd say that there has to be a considerable amount of polymerization, oxidation, etc. that happens during that time.

 

Saw this @ LdF (not scientific, but still):

 

"Does absinthe age?

 

Yes, the best, distilled absinthes age very well...we have tasted several that are almost 100 years old and are outstanding. We are still researching what exactly happens to the plant distillates as they age in the alcohol solution. The aging process, though important for high-proof spirits directly after distillation, is not something normally taken into consideration once they have been bottled. It is commonly believed that almost all spirits stop aging once they are placed into glass bottles, but this is not the case with distilled absinthe and a close cousin, Chartreuse.

 

Will aging change the quality or the flavor?

 

The changes will be rather subtle over a short period of a few months - this time typically improves absinthe by mellowing the alcohol bite, eliminating the 'still-shock' which can hamper the aromas and flavours and allows the herbal components to integrate even more. The color will usually become a lighter green, in some cases, more yellow-green and very old absinthes can take on an amber tint with green reflections. Clear absinthes will not change color, however, there may be some white sediment found at the bottom of the bottle."

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Perhaps, unbeknown to anyone, those particular bottles were indeed filled two years ago?

 

Oxy has more integrity than that and I don't think anyone alive can produce absinthe that good -- yet. If so, there would be no competition possible. Maybe in a couple of years . . .

 

No, I wasn't implying anything about Oxy, I meant before his discovery of the bottles.

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The chartreuse recipe is only known by 3 monks sworn to secrecy!
Two now. One must have gotten fired. An interesting point as well: their claim is "Green Chartreuse is the only liqueur in the world with a completely natural green colour." And yet it's colorfast in clear bottles at relatively low proof. (remember, absinthe is not a liqueur ;) )
I can't even imagine how many variables there are in making absinthe, but I can guess it is a HELLUVA lot more difficult than making chocolate chip cookies!
Eh. It ain't rocket science. I don't mean to start the whole science/art debate, because both are obviously involved, but it's closer to cooking than is often implied.

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An interesting point as well: their claim is "Green Chartreuse is the only liqueur in the world with a completely natural green colour." And yet it's colorfast in clear bottles at relatively low proof.

Well, that means they absolutely have to be lying. Because it's utterly impossible to do that naturally. ;)

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