Macedonian Mastika Reviewed

Sepulchritude Forum: The Absinthe Forum Archives Thru July 2001: Topics Archived thru April 2001:Macedonian Mastika Reviewed
By Absinthesque on Monday, April 23, 2001 - 09:23 am: Edit

I've heard something similar -- that back in the Vietnam era, the US military treated Ouzo like Absinthe.

I'm feeling a bit less jet-lagged this morning; I won't attribute my sloppy writing in the review to secondary effects. I did, however, dream more vividly than usual last night. . .so who knows?

By Heiko on Monday, April 23, 2001 - 09:14 am: Edit

I've heard that ouzo has, in the past, been prepared with wormwood as well (and was kind of absinthe). I forgot the source, but it said in some parts of greece where nobody has ever heard of a ban on absinthe, you might still get ouzo which is prepared according to the traditional way with a. absinthium.

I'm not sure if this is true.

By Martin on Monday, April 23, 2001 - 02:43 am: Edit

Yesss! Macedonian Swastika!

By Martin on Monday, April 23, 2001 - 02:40 am: Edit

Man, I need to get me some!!!

By Absinthesque on Sunday, April 22, 2001 - 05:15 pm: Edit

A friend in one of the former Yugoslavian states informed me that a Macedonian drink known as "Mastika" -- my transliteration of the Cyrillic -- is an Absinthe. In light of some recent discussions, it's interesting that she thinks of Ouzo, Mastika and Absinthe as essentially the same drink, with the same effects; she's not the only one I've heard express this opinion, and perhaps it's more than just a misunderstanding.

I was able to secure a liter bottle for $10 and am sipping a second glass now. . .I haven't had Ouzo in a long time, but I think Mastika is much closer to Ouzo than Absinthe. . .Anise is the predominant flavor, and I don't detect much herbal complexity. My wife tasted more herbs than I. It's been a long time since I've had Ouzo; if memory serves, this drink is not as sweet, but it still lacks the bitter finish of the better absinthes I've tried. I'm too jet-lagged to think about secondary effects.

Sipped neat, Anise is predominant in this clear drink. At 45% alcohol, it doesn't have the kick of most Absinthes. The louche is a little thin -- with a charming hint of purple in it. I don't know how this is done. My second glass is in warmer water, and the louche is less evident. Too much water also weakens the flavor considerably.

All in all, a pleasant drink and worth looking for if you find yourself in Eastern Europe, especially given its low price. It's undoubtedly hard to come by in the West.


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