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The Fée Verte Absinthe Forum - The Oldest, Largest, Most Authoritative Absinthe Forum. > Absinthe & Absinthiana > Vintage Absinthe
Deluge
Yes, Yes, I have read that Absinthe was the "sage brush of the glaciers" and that it was the "Paregoric of second child hood" I've even read that it was as "Poetical as a sunset" but, what I really want to know is, are there any period tasting notes for any of the various brands of the Belle Epoch?
Absomphe
The whole "critiquing of alcoholic beverages (except perhaps for wine), is a relatively new concept.

While Oxygenee has graced this forum with evidence of extendedly aged absinthes in the pre-ban era, I don't believe that there were "absinthe critics" in those days, whose job it was to review various houses' absinthes, in the way that "Wine Spectator" magazine covers oenology today.

If such tasting notes exist, doubtless, our most precious historical garnerer, Oxy, can unearth them...I've also wondered about this for DECADES!

Oxy?....

Oxygenee
An interesting point. I think the type of tasting notes you're referring to are a modern phenomenon.

I've never seen a detailed contemporary "Wine Spectator type" note for any vintage absinthe (or any other spirit for that matter), other than puff pieces by the manufacturers themselves, general descriptions in distilling guides like Duplais, or poetical flights of fancy by inebriated authors.

There are very few really detailed descriptions of specific wines in the 19th century literature either. I'm not certain of the situation in French, but in English the modern way of describing a wine really originates from George Saintsbury's "Notes on a Cellar-Book", which was first published in 1921 (and which is still essential reading for anyone interested in the field).
Deluge
Thanks Oxy!

I knew it was going to be a long shot!
Hiram
You mean, in the old days people just shut the hell up, sat down and enjoyed their liquor? What a concept.

I posted a while back asking if anyone had ever put together an absinthe review form and the general consensus at the time was that it was a silly idea, although we all come on here and ask for and give reviews.

Oxy, I believe you are in a particularly good position to assemble such a form, aren't you?
I'd find it helpful and I think if enough experienced absintheurs used it and posted their comments, it would be incredibly helpful for those who are trying to decide which brand to try next. In fact, I'm considering a browser-based form that would work like a guestbook. There would be a page for each absinthe with comments boxes that could be filled in by each user.
Perruche_verte
That sounds like the consumer reviews one can find on Epinions or on Amazon.com, which allow people to assign a star rating as well.

The big problem, of course, is that these reviews can be easily and deliberately skewed. Nowhere do you find this more than in pro audio gear... a product will have an average 4-1/2 to 5 star rating, and then 10 one-star reviews will appear, all of them following the online wingnut style guidelines of all-caps typing and lots of exclamation points (THIS THING SUCKS SHIT!!! DIDN'T WORK RIGHT!!! SOUNDS TERRIBLE!!! SAVE YOUR MONEY!!!).

I think it would be a great idea to have open reviews on this site, but we would need to raise the bar a little bit. Either restrict them to the Absinthe Mafia or require a minimum of, say, 200-300 posts before a user could add to them.
Hiram
Good points. I had intended it for a members-only site for just that reason. I personally imagined Mr. Logan spamming the hell out of it.

Please tell me your sig line isn't actually part of PayPal's TOS.
Patlow
QUOTE (Hiram @ Mar 26 2004, 07:30 AM)
You mean, in the old days people just shut the hell up, sat down and enjoyed their liquor? What a concept.


if only it could be like that again...
Artemis
QUOTE
I posted a while back asking if anyone had ever put together an absinthe review form and the general consensus at the time was that it was a silly idea,


That's not true. It's a good idea, it's just not that easy to put into practice. In fact, until fairly recently, the lot of us didn't have enough experience to put meaningful input into such a thing. Ted was working on it, but he's a busy guy and it fell by the wayside (I assume). I found a sake tasting matrix that I think would work very well, and I offered to run it by Ted - he took me up on it, but then I couldn't find it. If it's really that important, I could have one ready in a few days. I probably should be compensated for my effort, so what do you have that I might want to drink?
Perruche_verte
"Please tell me your sig line isn't actually part of PayPal's TOS. "

I'm afraid it actually is.

I shudder to imagine why and how this became policy.

(Didn't someone stage a fake eBay auction of Van Gogh's ear quite a while ago...?)
Conju
I know exactly how it happened, I beleive I actually know the person who was responsible for it, I've seen the paperwork and could possibly get a copy if you'd like

One of my buddies from my fraternity is well, unusually funny I guess would be the best way to put it. And I was drinking with him one time when he mentioned that one time he tried to sell his semen (that's right, his semen) on ebay. He had claimed that people were bidding on it left and right and there were even people from michigan willing to fly him out to impregnate his wife (from oregon mind you) and fly him back again. I told him I didn't believe him and he showed me the paperwork. I was absolutely shocked, to say the least, and wondered why I didn't think of it first). He then went on to tell me that since then, ebay has marked bodily fluids, body parts, and organs and whatnot as forbidden sales on ebay. The humans part is just common sense, as slavery is illegal.

I can understand if this story may seem a little far-fetched, and don't expect anybody to believe me. I just thought I'd share.
Hiram
Great. I was hoping to be able to pick up a Hand of Glory.
Absomphe
What a great application of the flaming ritual! w00t2.gif
I_B_Puffin
QUOTE (Perruche_verte @ Mar 26 2004, 11:10 AM)
I think it would be a great idea to have open reviews on this site, but we would need to raise the bar a little bit. Either restrict them to the Absinthe Mafia or require a minimum of, say, 200-300 posts before a user could add to them.

I do to, but I think it should be based on how long you've been a member, not how many posts you've made. Some members here can make 200 posts in a day.
Absomphe
Perhaps the variety of absinthes sampled, plus the ability to translate one's tasting experience into a coherent, serious review, should play an important role...one could conceivably have been a forum member for seven years, and still not detect the difference between, say, anise, and fennel.
Laurent

Well (with due respect to all) doesn't the point of reviews / tasting notes / etc. really just come down to whether it tastes/smells/looks "good?"

Wine tasting can get away with something as simple as appearance, bouquet, and taste; do we *really* need more than that for an herbal liqueur?

pirate2.gif



Deluge
Good point! abs-cheers.gif
dgT
Sure the tasting guide could be broken down to simple categories. However, if you are talking about tasting notes for vintage absinthe, I would sure like more than a simplified version. Perhaps a combination of both would make it easily accessible for everyone. Individual characteristics could carry a number rating, with a full review to follow.
Absomphe
Perhaps it could be a numbered rating system, with a section for tasting notes, which would allow for a description of unusual, complex flavors, that might not be covered in the standard taste profile.
Deluge
My question was asking if any tasting notes from the Belle Epoch still exist or if they had ever existed. I think when it comes to modern "CO" a basic format should work out ok. With "HG" on the other hand I think that a simple format would not do the drink justice. Tasting notes for vintage absinthe I hope would go beyond nice color, good, louche, nice bouquet, good taste! abs-cheers.gif
cleanpower
Well, perhaps length of time on site would be more fair for those of us who are limited "talkers." fart.gif
Conju
Time on site, and perhaps personal interviews. Either way, head and kallisti hold the keys to the castle, and it's at their discrepency really.
musicgeek
Why not just let everybody submit their reviews and let Head and Kallisti choose which ones to post...or just read the forum as every new product gets reviewed on here eventually anyway.

Deluge
Thats what the Modern Brand Reviews and News section is for!
I_B_Puffin
Those are scattered, intermixed with non-reviews, and get archived. I think someone wanted individual reviews posted under each brand.
Deluge
Like Harmony-central but for absinthe. Hmm. blink.gif That might be kinda cool!
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