Vermouth, Benedictine and Chartreuse...

Sepulchritude Forum: The Absinthe Forum Archives Thru July 2001: Topics Archived Thru Nov 2000:Vermouth, Benedictine and Chartreuse...
By Petermarc on Wednesday, November 15, 2000 - 02:34 am: Edit

is that sarcasm? brutal...;-)

By Marc on Wednesday, November 15, 2000 - 01:51 am: Edit


you have always been ahead of your time.

By Petermarc on Wednesday, November 15, 2000 - 12:16 am: Edit

it brought up this subject one month ago and i gave it it's own thread, it is amusing that no one seemed interested in discussing it then...i like it, but it is not like drinking absinthe...

By Marc on Tuesday, November 14, 2000 - 10:58 pm: Edit


it tastes like Chartreuse. Not at all like absinthe. I actually like it. It tastes of gentian (bitter), angelica, fennel and anise. Call me a philistine, but I think I prefer it to Chartreuse.
I will have to try it again.

By Tabreaux on Tuesday, November 14, 2000 - 08:32 pm: Edit

Funny that this was mentioned, as I was looking at the box of that product this evening. What is amusing is his use of a taxonomical name for star anise that I have never seen, and his incorrect picture of another herb.

By Don_walsh on Tuesday, November 14, 2000 - 08:21 pm: Edit

Dear Marc

So how does the stuff taste? Like Chartreuse or like absinthe?

By Marc on Tuesday, November 14, 2000 - 07:46 pm: Edit


I've bought a bottle of Elixir Vegetal. According to the little pamphlet that comes with it, the Elixir contains about 18 herbs. The pamphlet names all of the herbs, but I threw it away and forgot what they were.

By Don_walsh on Tuesday, November 14, 2000 - 06:18 pm: Edit

I dunno, I haven't been able to buy any as yet. But I'd guess so.

By Black_rabbit on Tuesday, November 14, 2000 - 04:07 pm: Edit

Don, Does teh Elixer Vegital taste so much of the Angelica? I am with Ted on this one...

By Don_walsh on Tuesday, November 14, 2000 - 12:30 pm: Edit

The original Chartreuse recipe (now replicated only by Elixir Vegetal in little bottles) contains, purportedly, 130 herbs.

Both 'regular' Chartreuse liqueurs (yellow and green) are much simplified from that, and are predominantly angelica based, but are still a lot more complex than absinthe. I am quite fond of Chartreuse, esp verte, while Ted doesn't like that much angelica and won't go near Chartreuse.

By Tabreaux on Tuesday, November 14, 2000 - 12:14 pm: Edit

Chartreuse apparently uses very small concentrations of many, many herbs.

By Grimbergen on Tuesday, November 14, 2000 - 11:02 am: Edit

My guess is that Chartreuse does have wormwood. Here is a little experiment to try. Buy a bottle of absinthe, a bottle of german woodruff syrup (they use it to mix with berlinerweiss) and a bottle of green Chartreuse. Mix the absinthe and woodruff together (have to experiment with proportions) and then compare that mixture to the Chartreuse. The two will be different, but you will probably also be surprised by the similarity.

(FYI: the absinthe I used for this comparison wasn't commercial. The predominant flavors in it are the wormwood, anis and mint. The three are well balanced.)


By Midas on Tuesday, November 14, 2000 - 07:47 am: Edit

Thanks, Don. I suspected as much. And Petermarc, thanks also. I'm especially interested in Vermouth. I thought it would be comparatively easy to find out if A.absinthium is used in it's production, but guess what...
The reason I ask is because the Australian food code is up for revision soon (very soon), and if all goes well, myself and a partner (hi Jonathan) may be joining the ranks of BEI, BE, GB etc. I don't want to say too much, for fear of jinxing myself, but the new regulation on wormwood in spirits would be roughly equal to the UK, and I want to find out about Vermouth, Benedictine, Chartreuse etc., so we have some legal ammunition if we need it regarding the use of A.absinthium in currently available spirits.
Oh well, more hunting to do.

By Don_walsh on Tuesday, November 14, 2000 - 07:01 am: Edit

Dear Midas

All I know is that 'anecdotal' recipes found on the Web for Chartreuse do contain A.Absinthium. Whether or not Chartreuse as produced today by the Carthusians does or not, they ain' telling. However, the French government went to the trouble to exempt the Carthusians from the ban on all herbal liqueurs, and then from the more specific ban on A.absinthium-containing liqueurs, so that ought to be a clue. An educated guess (shared by myself and Absintheur) is that common Chartreuse has the least absinthium, FEP has more and 'elixir vegetal' has the most. But as I said -- it's just an educated guess.

About Benedictine I have much less information.

By Petermarc on Tuesday, November 14, 2000 - 06:37 am: Edit

it would be very difficult to know exactly what are the ingredients for benedictine and chartreuse, since these products have "secret" recipes which are not released (well, god knows,since they are made by his/her representatives but see if he/she will be any help)...vermouth has many recipes, i imagine, as there are many producers...good luck...

By Midas on Tuesday, November 14, 2000 - 05:54 am: Edit

It's been stated that all of the above include wormwood to some degree in their ingredients. Does anyone know if it is actually A.Absinthium, or Roman wormwood, or some other variety?
This is not just out of curiosity. I need to know for a reason.
Ta much.

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