Larsand

Sepulchritude Forum: The Absinthe Forum Archives Thru July 2001: Topics Archived thru March 2001:Larsand
By Guillermo on Saturday, June 30, 2001 - 02:49 pm: Edit

Toulouse,

I just did a keyword search for Campari, and came up with your post. Tell me about Pimms -- I've been reluctant to spring the $16 for sth I'd never tasted, but am interested (given that I love Campari).

William.

By Wolfgang on Friday, March 30, 2001 - 07:34 am: Edit

Fine, thanks you for the review. Now where can we buy it at a reasonable price ?

By Artemis on Friday, March 30, 2001 - 06:25 am: Edit

Excellent review, Lautrec. Some comments:

"as I recall from a recent post by Admin"

You can't go wrong referring to the administrator as Kallisti, because she is.

"the term, "medicinal," which is maybe somewhat loaded"

I've used it myself and meant nothing negative by it, but I agree, since most medicine probably tastes nasty. I believe we are ourselves creating the vocabulary future absinthe reviewers will use. I believe Ted has a project in the works to make the effort more coherent and consistent.

By Tlautrec on Friday, March 30, 2001 - 12:19 am: Edit

I know some of you have the inclination to diss Betina, but she did me a great favor by obtaining a bottle of Larsand from Andorra. I guess that puts me in the pro-Betina camp, but enough of that particular topic, which has been exhaustively (too exhaustively, one might say) rehashed on this forum. Let's talk, rather, about the product.

Larsand is a distilled absinthe, as opposed to the macerated Huguet, also from Andorra, which, as I recall from a recent post by Admin, was somewhat yucky, as one would expect macerated absinthes to be. However, let me assure you, Larsand is most assuredly not yucky. In fact, I like it very much.

The first good thing I can say about Larsand is that it is not as sweetened as the various Spanish products I've tried. Thus, when drunk without sugar but with water, it is dry to the palate, almost like a good gin that has been somewhat diluted. Side by side with an unsweetened Spanish (MM 70 in this case), the Spanish is distinctly sweeter and less complex.

The color is olive-ish green, and it louches very nicely to a pale grey-olive. It has none of the candy-like flavor that I now find somewhat annoying in Deva; rather, it's pleasantly astringent. Even with some sugar, the bitterness of the artemisia absinthum comes through clearly, yet without being in any way unpalatable. It leaves a fresh-tasting, dry tingle on my tongue and in the front of my mouth. Some of you might call this "medicinal" and compare it to mouthwash, but let me tell you kids, there are some mighty fine tasting mouthwashes out there. (Try Astring-o-Sol, for example, which contains myrrh, and which I find to be quite yummy.)

Perhaps I exaggerate in using the term, "medicinal," which is maybe somewhat loaded. It would be more accurate to say that Larsand has a fresh, straightforward, herbal taste, more like that of other bitter herb-based drinks I love, such as Campari, Pimms or Becherovka, than like pastis. Also, I can't detect much, if any, of the dreaded star anise in it. Indeed, the very slight hint of a licorice taste in it seems to be regular anise and fennel, or both.

Perhaps it's not the most complex absinthe (I haven't yet had the pleasure of trying Ted and Don's creations), but it's eminently drinkable, and to my palate, Larsand has no negative qualities at all. I can't say what a French-style absinthe is, except for La Fée, but Larsand seems to me to be more like La Fée than like any of the Spanish absinthes I've tried, but without the slight oiliness and artificiality I detect in La Fée.

For several minutes after sipping it, the Larsand leaves a delightful residual dry, slightly bitter sensation on my upper palate. I would certainly recommend it to anyone looking to experience the full range of exquisite taste sensations which absinthe can offer.

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