Hapsburg Red Label
what does this mean? click here!
or download the scoresheet.
Country of Origin: Bulgaria
Type: Mixed & Macerated
Alcohol Level: 85 %
Vendors: ♣ Absinthes.com
Description: Absinthe Hapsburg Red Label at Absinthes.com
Reviewed by Ari 10/06/2006
COLOR BEFORE WATER 3/10
Artificial green with a slight blue tint. Obviously the same as last review because Artificial color doesn't decay... if only it would.
LOUCHE ACTION 3/10
Weak louche. Lots of oil trails that reabsorb into the clear liquid. Becomes overall hazy at almost the end of the drip. Removed a point, I think I was over generous, although it does "louche" if you have a slightly frosty glass, you will miss it.
COLOR AFTER WATER 3/10
Thin and cyan colored. The blue dye appears to separate out a bit leaving the center greener than the edges. Again, I think I was over generous.
Before water, anise and surprisingly little heat. After water anise and a slight sweet smell I can't put my finger on, the best I can describe it is flowery honey. Although it really doesn't blossom. Interesting that I don't notice any difference in Aroma.
Thin like its louche. Only a small amount of tongue numbness. Some heat but surprisingly less than I was expecting at 85%.
This dropped a number of points. Anise and an industrial taste, I think this is what originally smelled like flowery honey. Now it makes it impossible to drink.
OVERALL IMPRESSION 3/10
I can no longer finish a glass, it goes good in rootbeer. Once I really noticed the industrial flavor it's hard to forget and hard to get down.
Adding more water (1:3.5-4) thins out the louche and the flavor but makes the heat undetectable. My biggest surprise was that it really doesn't feel like it has 10%+ more alcohol than other absinthe.
*A quick word of warning some people can have allergic reactions to dye E131 according to the ukfoodguide.
I couldn't find much info on the producers site. They write about absinthe but it is unclear if it's absinthe in general or Hapsburg. Since they speak about absinthe coming out of the distillery green and Hapsburg uses artificial coloring I am inclined to say they aren't speaking about hapsburg.
Ari scores Hapsburg 85% 31 out of 100
I received a sample of Hapsburg Absinthe today. The sample was graciously provided to me by Dale of Wine and Spirit International, London. They distribute several brands, including Hapsburg, Dedo, Trenet, etc. http://www.wineandspirit.com/ (Editor: for Wholesale Distribution Only)
The package arrived well packed and unhindered. Hapsburg Absinthe is made in Bulgaria, and comes in two different strengths, 72.5% and 85% alcohol. Both strengths come in a satin finish glass bottle, with the lower strength being a green label, the higher one being red. The back label lists the following ingredients: alcohol, water, natural 'aroma', wormwood infusion, sugar, and coloring E102-E131.
Apparently, coloring E102-E131 seems to be popular, as Hapsburg, Dedo, and Trenet all use it, and are all basically the same medium to light green color, with just the slightest bit of blue tint.
The aroma is mostly alcohol, with just the slightest hint of anise. Tasting the liqueur neat reveals a very mild anise flavor, with a mild bitterness behind it.
Adding water reveals a slight louche, and again, a mild anise (star anise) and mildly bitter flavor. There is not much I can say to further define the flavor, as it is simple and straightforward.
I find the flavor to be *very* similar to Tunel, and like Tunel, I grade this product as in the same general group as the Czech products, but with a more refined (albeit thin), drinkable light anise flavor. The bitterness is not obtrusive enough to warrant any sugar usage. Quite honestly, if you can bear the alcohol content, you could just drink it out of the bottle.