"EXTRA BLANC" ?

Sepulchritude Forum: The Absinthe Forum Archives Thru July 2001: Topics Archived Thru Nov 2000:"EXTRA BLANC" ?
By Bob_chong on Friday, November 03, 2000 - 03:30 pm: Edit

Yes, mead is great. A local place here makes some. Also, my buddy made a special batch for his wedding reception (a year in advance for proper aging). I've never brewed any myself, though. Always wanted to.

BC

By Lordhobgoblin on Friday, November 03, 2000 - 01:39 pm: Edit

Bob,

I'll gladly stick to the "Sugar In Absinthe Or Not" debate, I've had enough acid in the stomach (and not the hallucinogenic type) on this forum in the last few weeks I'd rather not have any more.

Do yourself a favour try some Mead, fabulous stuff :-)

Hobgoblin

By Bob_chong on Friday, November 03, 2000 - 11:47 am: Edit

Hob:

I know you were being funny.

That said, I guess we have different ideas as to what the word "distribute" means. (To me, it implies that someone is doing the giving out of the shares. And since you're an atheist, I can't figure out who you think that controlling entity would be.) I've never heard it used the way you are using it, so I plead ignorance. Maybe it has socialist connotations or you Brits have your own special meanings for the Latin roots. I dunno.

But I didn't want to get into the socialism vs. whatever debate. Sorry. You can go back to your sugar and absinthe. ;-)

BC

By Lordhobgoblin on Friday, November 03, 2000 - 10:52 am: Edit

Bob,

Wealth is an artificial representation of the resources of our planet, money is simply the exchange value of that resource, money or wealth cannot simply be generated or manufactured. The resources of the planet are distributed and therefore can be redistributed.

You may by all means disagree with me about how the resources of our planet should be distributed, but to say they have never been distributed is nonsense, (even if all the wealth is in the hands of one person it is still distributed). If you're going to disagree with me then think your position through first.

Hobgoblin

Anyway, the post was intended to be a humourous dig at Don :-)

By Bob_chong on Friday, November 03, 2000 - 10:07 am: Edit

Hobgoblin:

Contrary to your socialist dogma, wealth is earned. It was never "distributed" and therefore cannot be redistributed.

K

BC

By Lordhobgoblin on Friday, November 03, 2000 - 09:24 am: Edit

Don,

"...the French government appropriated (nationalized = stole) the Carthusian monastery near Grenoble..."

Surely you mean

"the French government appropriated (nationalized = redistributed part of the vast wealth of the Church back to People) the Carthusian monastery near Grenoble"

;-)

Hobgoblin

By Absinthedrinker on Friday, November 03, 2000 - 08:39 am: Edit

I once saw a loose tea spoon (the ones that allowed you to shake off the powder through the holes and retain the quality leaf) being sold as an absinthe spoon on ebay. I'd have been interested to see how it fitted on a glass...

By Petermarc on Friday, November 03, 2000 - 08:06 am: Edit

so is your absinthe spoon really an absinthe
spoon or not?...by the way, the spoons being sold
on e-bay which claim to be "for the wealthy or
5-star restaurants"(which is pretty fancy since
michelin only goes up to 3)are NOT absinthe spoons
but were used to sprinkle powdered chocolate or
sugar on desserts...you can sometimes see them in sets with the matching knife, fork and spatula...
maybe someone might have used one for absinthe, they do look nice and do the trick, but i have never been told they were for that, and have asked several times...try to find one on delahaye's list(at least the old one for now)i will happily be corrected since i have seen many
and will sell them with my $100 sugar tablets...
;-)

By Absintheur on Friday, November 03, 2000 - 07:42 am: Edit

In a recent newsletter of the European Society of the Studies of Gentianacées there is an interesting article on Amer Picon: "the drink, which refreshes without intoxicating" (great slogan) -- it's actually a lengthy retraction of an inaccurate piece they ran last year, but it's interesting nonetheless.

Contrary to other sources, the European Society of the Studies of Gentianacées asserts that Picon was developed in Algeria in 1836 under the name of African Amer. They claim that Gaëtan Picon then moved the company to Phillipeville, then again to Marseilles, in 1872, when it changed it's name to Amer Picon.

They also assert that the beverage, originally made with quinine and orange peel, was sold as an absinthe (hey barkeep, why is my absinthe orange?) -- and was thus positioned as France's second most popular beverage at the time of the ban.

Amer Picon nedded only cut the quinine from their recipe and increase the bitter orange peel to comply with the ban, and it became France's most popular bevarage following the prohibition of absinthe, in 1915. It remained the number one aperitif in France until 1930 and is still the most popular aperitif in the Alsace.

None of this speaks directly to the question of Picon Sucre, but it makes the notion that Amer Picon would have been served with water and sugar more plausible.

By Petermarc on Friday, November 03, 2000 - 05:06 am: Edit

just don't open a bottle of gentiane and absinthe
and expect anything similar...they are two completely different beasts...that goes for
elixir vegetal, too...but it is the closest thing
that the french have to legal absinthe...70° not
much sugar,natural green color, but doesn't go down like absinthe...keep for after a big dinner.

By Don_walsh on Friday, November 03, 2000 - 02:54 am: Edit

Dear ekmass

Chartreuse was quietly exempted from the ban (original blanket ban on herbal
liqueurs, and subsequent one on absinthium containing liqueurs). And I would
not assume that Chartreuse contains no absinthium. In particular, the elixir
vegetal probably contains quite a bit.

There are many published recipes purporting to be for Chartreuse and all the
ones I have seen contain wormwood, plus most or all of the other herbs
usually mentioned in absinthe recipes.

Just prior to the absinthe ban, the French government appropriated
(nationalized = stole) the Carthusian monastery near Grenoble, and the monks
fled to Spain and set up their distillery there. The French government
attempted to duplicate the Chartreuse process, and set up a company to
market an ersatz Chartreuse. The customers preferred the (now Spanish)
original, and the French usurper company went bankrupt. The people of the
locality bought the bankrupt company and gave it back to the Carthusians who
returned from their Spanish exile.

I suspect that the Benedictines were also exempted but am not sure.

Much of this is discussed on the official Chartreuse website, q.v. and we
have previously been through this matter on the Forum, thanks to Absintheur
for his generous input on the history.

By Don_walsh on Friday, November 03, 2000 - 02:54 am: Edit

A Gentian liqueur is made by Chartreuse but sold only in France. See their website.

Gentian making is the most usual pretext under which La Bleue makers buy their alcohol from the Swiss Alcohol Commission.

By Absinthedrinker on Friday, November 03, 2000 - 02:28 am: Edit

You learn so much here! Does anyone know what 'Chapal André' is? I have some spoons with that on the handle as well as Extra Blanc.

By Petermarc on Friday, November 03, 2000 - 02:21 am: Edit

please disregard the hiccop...

By Petermarc on Friday, November 03, 2000 - 02:18 am: Edit

sorry, it's the gentian that is taken short,
not the mont d'or cheese, but the cheese can almost be sipped from a glass too...

By Petermarc on Friday, November 03, 2000 - 02:16 am: Edit

sorry, it's the gentian that is taken short,
not the mont d'or cheese, but the cheese can almost be taken in a shot glass too...

By Petermarc on Friday, November 03, 2000 - 12:34 am: Edit

gentian is still being made as a distilled
digestif (like an eau-de-vie or unsugared schnapps) in france along with suze (suze has added sugar and is more of an apéritif and is
highly regarded as a natural product)...i had the opportunity to go on a root-dig for gentian when
i was in the mountains...it looks like ginseng
and can be huge (3 feet long)and had a very strong
scent...it is prized as a distilled after-dinner
drink and welcomed after homemade pine-smoked ham
wild mushrooms,frites and mont d'or cheese to excess(taken short, like a shot but sipped) and there are those in the region who will pay $50 or more a bottle for it, which is extremely expensive
for something like this, compared to the distilled fruit alcohols...it has an earthy,woody, mushroomy character and was about 60°. not for everyday...

By Absintheur on Thursday, November 02, 2000 - 07:10 pm: Edit

To the best of my knowledge Amer Picon and Picon Sucre are two totally different things, both produced by the company founded in Philippeville, Belgium in 1837 by Gaetan Picon.

Amer Picon is a very bitter orange cordial still widely available in France, and the United States (if you're interested you can order a bottle through Hi Time Wines in the guide). It's a astringently bitter 21% mascerated spirit made from orange whites. It is most frequently served in "the Italian style" in a cocktail glass with grenadine and seltzer.

Suze, by Pernod-Ricard, is actually a gentian wine (for those with an interest -- during the 19th century gentian spirits were sold as absinthe, and gentian was blamed for the same deliterious effects as wormwood...) available widely in France, and in a limited capacity in the United States (for an equally interesting gentian beverage, try Moxie Soda, available through http://www.PopSoda.com a Yahoo affiliated vendor).

Picon Sucre, on the other hand, was, to the best of my knowledge, a brand of sugar tablets produced by Picon in the later part of the 19th century (I believe that Delahaye transposed the two Picon products) -- around the time the company moved it's opperations to France. Amer Picon was never consumed with sugar and water, so dedicated spoons weren't strictly necessary. Picon Sucre, on the other hand was used with absinthe, and would therefore have been marketed on spoons.

By Ekmass on Thursday, November 02, 2000 - 03:23 pm: Edit

PS. thanks for the research on Picon. This is really quite an interesting place.

By Ekmass on Thursday, November 02, 2000 - 03:21 pm: Edit

"Bear in mind that all herbal spirits were banned including Absinthe, Kirche, the Watercress (sp?), Curacao Sec, Guinozet etc"

What about Chartreuse was that also banned? I was under the impression that this was an herbal spirit, a rather tasty one at that. Just wondering. Also does it not contain A. Absinthium

By Petermarc on Thursday, November 02, 2000 - 02:33 pm: Edit

picon still exists...it is now commonly mixed with
beer...they even have a premixed beer/picon...it
is not bad, but i haven't had the desire to really get to know the stuff...i saw an egg glass
that had a fishscale-like pattern on the bottom about dose-high, and was told that it was not an absinthe glass but for picon...

By Chrysippvs on Thursday, November 02, 2000 - 02:17 pm: Edit

I am not sure, although I am sure that Absintheur does...Bear in mind that all herbal spirits were banned including Absinthe, Kirche, the Watercress (sp?), Curacao Sec, Guinozet etc many of which never regained any popularity (including absinthe)

Sounds nasty to me....but that is what Picon and Cior made...I always thought it was a sugar maker too but did some reading and learned something!

- Justin

By Ekmass on Thursday, November 02, 2000 - 02:00 pm: Edit

Is this orange flavored concoction still around? And what was the spoon for then? Or is like that nasty drink Sauza, which should come w/ a spoon. Not even sugar could help that stuff

By Chrysippvs on Thursday, November 02, 2000 - 01:39 pm: Edit

Nah I looked it up..it is straight out of Delahaye p245 at the end of the spoons sections.

"PICON SUCRE- Il ne s'agissait pas d'absinthe mais d'un aperitif dit -amer- a base d'oranges."

This was also true of the spoon for CIOR...

By Ekmass on Thursday, November 02, 2000 - 01:24 pm: Edit

Picon sucre makes sense since it is an absinthe spoon. Is there currently a brand as such in france?

By Tabreaux on Thursday, November 02, 2000 - 01:19 pm: Edit

Unless we are talking about two different things, I think PICON was the name of a sugar maker (e.g. Picon Sucre).

By Chrysippvs on Thursday, November 02, 2000 - 12:53 pm: Edit

I think it wasn't absinthe at all, rather a aperitif based on Oranges or citrus one...

By Ekmass on Thursday, November 02, 2000 - 12:45 pm: Edit

speaking of spoons, I got a star spoon that has PICON written on the top of the handle. Was this a brand of Absinthe?

By Chrysippvs on Thursday, November 02, 2000 - 10:06 am: Edit

I have also seen some other items marked "Extra blanc" For instance the dome of Fountain I turned down recently was marked extra blanc and also an old syringe I was going to get was marked likewise...maybe we are both right....

By Tabreaux on Thursday, November 02, 2000 - 08:38 am: Edit

Yes, that is correct, but I don't think the spoon maker specified the type of the metal with an advertisement in the handle! I am pretty sure "Extra Blanc" was either the name of a product, referring to the 'grade'.

By Absinthedrinker on Thursday, November 02, 2000 - 04:48 am: Edit

According to Delahaye (p228) Metal Blanc and Metal Extra Blanc were synonyms for an alloy called Maillechort (named after the inventors) which comprised copper, zinc and nickel and was designed to imitate silver. This base may then have been silver plated.

By Tabreaux on Wednesday, November 01, 2000 - 09:56 pm: Edit

Actually, I think that may have been the name of a clear pastis at some point. Unless my memory is playing tricks, I think I recall seeing that in a photo or something.

By Chrysippvs on Wednesday, November 01, 2000 - 07:57 pm: Edit

It means it is silver plated...

By Domingo on Wednesday, November 01, 2000 - 07:44 pm: Edit

I recently obtained a spoon stamped "EXTRA BLANC". Can anyone tell me what this was or indicates.
Thanks,
Domingo

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