New tastes arrived, newbie reviews follow

Sepulchritude Forum: The Absinthe Forum Thru December 2001: New tastes arrived, newbie reviews follow
By Petermarc on Monday, September 24, 2001 - 10:16 am: Edit

looking forward to it!

By Absinthedrinker on Monday, September 24, 2001 - 06:47 am: Edit

All the herbs (there are around 20) are steeped except (I think) the star anise which may be an oil. The distillation process was rather unusual for a spirit but you'll have to wait for the full story...

By Aion on Monday, September 24, 2001 - 06:42 am: Edit

Did you see how it is made?
Mixed from oils??

By Absinthedrinker on Monday, September 24, 2001 - 05:44 am: Edit

Versinthe is absinthe in as much as it contains Artemisia absinthium in all markets where this is allowed. So the French version is absinthe (absinthe has been legal in France since late 1999 - yes really!) but the US version uses mugwort, and has a different label. I visited the Versinthe distillery last week and will be posting an account with pictures when I get time later this week.

By Simonsuisse on Monday, September 17, 2001 - 10:21 am: Edit

As much as i wish Versinthe was absinthe i don't believe it is. If it was, then why is it sold in shops all over France.
Ps thanks to the person who gave the Ponsec site. I have been trying to get this for a while. Had it in switzerland, but not since. -great taste.

By Aion on Monday, September 17, 2001 - 03:12 am: Edit

if you are interesed to buy PA (ponsec only) + Oxygenee:

By Aion on Monday, September 17, 2001 - 02:35 am: Edit

I ordered from Narbey 2 times.
Very friendly and helpful. Speaks French only
(I do not), but there were no problems.
Ponsec is with sugar added (not too sweet though),
Á l´ancienne is without sugar, that´s the only difference. As for flexibility and personal taste I would suggest to order the Á l´ancienne
I guess Narbey does not ship outside Europe!

By Etienne on Sunday, September 16, 2001 - 06:09 pm: Edit

Has anyone seen the spoons or fountains? Any idea of the quality?

By Heiko on Sunday, September 16, 2001 - 04:45 pm: Edit

Thanks for the link! I wanted to order Pontarlier anis recently but didn't know this site

btw. what is the difference between the two brands ponsec and à l'ancienne?

By Bob_Chong on Sunday, September 16, 2001 - 01:42 pm: Edit

BTW--they're selling spoons with their own design for about $14 and repro fountains from $425 (4-taps) to $500 (6-taps).


By Bob_Chong on Sunday, September 16, 2001 - 01:39 pm: Edit

Has anyone ordered from here:

Sorry if this has been posted before.

And here's a link to the Musee site:


By Tabreaux on Sunday, September 16, 2001 - 12:34 pm: Edit

To offer a contrasting opinion, neither L'Amesinthe nor Versinthe taste like old absinthe to me. While both are pleasant tasting, aromatic liqueurs d'anis, like other modern liqueurs d'anis, pastis, etc., both contain a syrupy high sugar content which makes them very much different from the absinthes of old, regardless of what they are (or claim to be).

By Heiko on Sunday, September 16, 2001 - 09:23 am: Edit

How can you be so sure? Would the maker tell Wolfgang in an email "we are using art. absinthium for Versinthe but make another Versinthe for the US" if this was totally untrue?

Are you saying they are obviously lying? Can you prove it?

By Simonsuisse on Sunday, September 16, 2001 - 06:06 am: Edit

Neither Versinthe or L'amersinthe are absinthe. They do not contain any Artimisia absinthium what so ever. They are merely a complex pastis with a difference. Made to taste of what the long gone absinthe actually did taste like (Well closer than any other drink i've tried).
By the way, those into cool antiques should check out the Musee de pontarlier absinthe site. You can buy replica full size fountains,labels and spoons. Can't remember the site though. Just search and write in: L'absinthe Pontarlier and their site should be there.

By Heiko on Thursday, September 13, 2001 - 06:27 am: Edit

Tlautrec, this is Wolfgangs post from a former thread ('Versinthe different?')


Look at that! This the email I just got from La Liquoristerie de Provence :

Oui versinthe est elaborée avec des plantes de grande absinthe.Toutefois
nous respectons la legislation européenne et donc les normes Toutefois aux
etats unis versinthe est faites avec des armoises pou respecter la
legislation locale. Le gout est toutefois identique.
Au quebec le produit versinthe est arrivée Il subit toutefois des analyses
avant sa commercialisation qui ne saurait tarder.


In short, that means Versinthe is made with artemisia absinthium BUT, for you, unlucky Americans, The Liquoristerie have made a special version without it.

By Absinthedrinker on Thursday, September 13, 2001 - 04:16 am: Edit

Tlautrec - I am planning to visit their distillery with Phil next week so I will try and get the low-down on this.

By Tlautrec on Wednesday, September 12, 2001 - 11:31 pm: Edit


I checked the liquoristerie site that you highlighted, and I couldn't find any indication in the French version that the Versinthe sold in the US is any different than the Versinthe sold anywhere else. If the company has confirmed this fact to you privately, I'd love to see their confirmation (and based on this, possibly order some Versinthe from SC - the American version is pretty good stuff as it is). However, the description of l'Amesinthe on that website was much more absinthe-oriented than the Versinthe write-up. Also, l'Amesinthe seems to be unobtainable here, so I was wondering whether maybe it's their l'Amesinthe (which also copies the old Absinthe Robette design on its label) that's more of a real absinthe.

By Leela on Tuesday, September 11, 2001 - 09:27 am: Edit

So why did I try MM, in spite of the discussions on this forum? Because I am a completist and wanted to try them ALL!



(P.S. Hubby woke up, saw the tv, and sat down on the sofa and started drinking Segarra.)

By Heiko on Tuesday, September 11, 2001 - 08:40 am: Edit

I thought about 2 Segarra, too - but then it's going to be really expensive....

By Wolfgang on Tuesday, September 11, 2001 - 08:10 am: Edit

I will have the same order, except for the Deva (I will order 2 segarra instead)...Well...who cares.

By Heiko on Tuesday, September 11, 2001 - 07:37 am: Edit

I just remembered we already talked about that - only I had forgotten that they sold another version in the US.
I just had a look at their site and all the nice anisettes they make. Yummy, I'd really like to have a drink of all of them now. At least they look very good :-)

I think I'm going to have Versinthe with my next order, too. That makes one Segarra, one NS 70, one Serpis 65,one Versinthe, one Deva (haven't had Deva so long, I can't remember the taste anymore).
Uh oh, that's going to be an expensive one...

By Wolfgang on Tuesday, September 11, 2001 - 07:18 am: Edit

Ho by the way, it would be interesting to compare the US version with the SC version side by side, who's up for the test ?

By Wolfgang on Tuesday, September 11, 2001 - 07:08 am: Edit

According to the producer of Versinthe, The US version is pastis but the rest (including what's comming from SC) is absinthe. Look at the french version of their site at

I'm planning to buy a bottle with my next order.

By Bob_Chong on Tuesday, September 11, 2001 - 06:34 am: Edit

"Better than Hill's" is not much of a selling point, really. Maybe one would prefer a case of dysentery to a dose of the clap, but does that mean we should seek out dysentery?

By Heiko on Tuesday, September 11, 2001 - 05:23 am: Edit

Compared to the Neto Costa that I recently had, MM was just very good. Not especially absinthe-like, but good. Fluid black jellybeans with a nice green color and 70% alcohol. Very drinkable, nothing in its taste that makes you want to spit it out like Hills. With Hills, you're not sure "is it drinkable or is it meant to rinse your mouth with only?". Nothing like that with MM. One dimensional, ok, but not bad. Not worth the money, that's it.

What was that about Versinthe recently? Is it pastis, or maybe absinthe (Hobgoblin, I only mean that as a distinction between a drink that contains or contains not art. absinthium, nothing else). I have to try it anyways, I guess.

By Geoffk on Tuesday, September 11, 2001 - 02:07 am: Edit

Bob -

Read the buyer's Guide reiew of MM and then ask yourself why someone might try it. Yes, if you go into the forum and bring yourself up to date, you'd probably have a different opinion, but based on the advice on the front page of this very web site, you might well be tempted to try it. Supposedly, Hills and MM are the only two that are very easy to find in London, and it's certainly better than Hills.

Personally, I don't think it's terrible, it's just very one dimensional (i.e., it tastes like star anise and not much else). If you like the black jellybean taste, it's not so bad. It's not complex or authentic, but it's certainly drinkable (again, unlike Hills or most Portaguese brands).

-- Geoff K.

By Tlautrec on Tuesday, September 11, 2001 - 01:15 am: Edit


I'm with you on Versinthe, it's my favorite pastis along with Henri Bardouin. Moreover, you can buy it in the Bay Area - at Beltramo's in Menlo Park, as well as at this little Mom 'n' Pop liquor store close to Monterey Market on Hopkins (I think it is) in Berkeley

By Bob_Chong on Tuesday, September 11, 2001 - 12:59 am: Edit

Why anyone who posts here would ever try MM is beyond me. It reminds me of the Cheech y Chong (no relation) skit which ends with the line, "Aren't you glad we didn't step in it?" MM has been universally panned, but people keep trying it.

By Chevalier on Monday, September 10, 2001 - 04:15 pm: Edit

Leela and Hobgoblin are veering toward a happy threadmerge. Cheers!

By Simonsuisse on Monday, September 10, 2001 - 04:11 pm: Edit

Leela i agree with you. even though versinthe aswell as L'amersinthe are not absinthe. They are two of my favourite drinks to date. I would also say that taste wise, they have more in common with vintage absinthe than any absenta or La Bleue.

By Leela on Monday, September 10, 2001 - 03:21 pm: Edit

Hi, my latest shipment has arrived, containing Mari Mayans and Versinthe. I compared them against my favorite, NS.

The Mari Mayans was frightening, it looks like Hills and straight it tastes almost like Hills. It louched, and then tasted like thin black jellybeans afterwards. I do not plan to purchase this again.

The Versinthe was straw colored, not quite as carmel as Segarra but not quite as olive as NS. It smelled beautiful, like a boquet of herbs and flowers. It louched to a barely apricot color, and maintained its fragrant perfume. It tasted fresh and healthy, and didn't have the oil slick on top that NS has.

I know there's some debate as to whether Versinthe is Absinthe or not, and the truth is that I simply don't care. I like the taste the best of all the pastis and absinthes I've tried so far (Pernod, Absente, Ricard, Segarra, Serpis, Mari Mayans, NS, Deva). Versinthe is so much smoother than NS, my previous favorite. I've seen people post here about the "industrial" overtones to some of the Spanish brands, and now that I can compare the NS and the Versinthe side-by-side I see exactly what is meant.


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