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Country of Origin: Sweden
Alcohol Level: 68 %
Description: First modern Swedish distilled absinthe. Distilled at Sankta Annas Bränneri, a small batch distillery located in an old church in Lindesberg, Sweden.
Reviewed by Hartsmar 12/29/2011
COLOR BEFORE WATER 8/10
A nice clear green color. The only thing that could be better is if it was just a bit deeper. Clearly natural and certainly no flaws.
LOUCHE ACTION 6/10
The louche is very quick and very thick. There's definitely nothing wrong with the louche itself but it's clearly the result of star anise, which I would say is what lowers the Louche Action slightly as it is a bit too instant.
COLOR AFTER WATER 8/10
A nice light green, milky thick and not much to complain about really.
The initial aroma is very fresh and minty. It reveals some tempting floral notes lingering behind this mintiness along with a clear wormwood scent. It is slightly disturbed by a lemony touch that is so often found in the Spanish absentas. That combined with the mintiness is overpowering the rest which really would benefit from being let out into full bloom. There is so much promise hiding in there. My guess is that this is due to the star anise which is obviously used.
If the amount of star anise would be toned down, the full body of the absinthe would be let out.
The Valkyria has a very creamy and rich mouth-feel but would benefit from less of the toungue-numbing star anise. That would balance the mouth-feel wonderfully.
The taste of the Valkyria is definitely not bad - however, the star anise takes away some of what I can tell could've been there. Valkyria Absinthe holds so much inside. There are so many flavours and scents just waiting to come out. If you really take your time you will find many underlying flavours, just as with the aroma, wanting to burst out. The one thing stopping it is the star anise lending its minty profile all over the place.
It is those underlying flavours that actually lift the entire taste part of the Valkyria. If it wasn't for all that goodness hiding in there, it would've been a rather uninteresting drink. But as it is now, it shows so much promise.
OVERALL IMPRESSION 7/10
All in all I think the Valkyria is a nice absinthe. I have no problem drinking it and I certainly will buy more of it. It reminds a lot of a better Spanish absenta and as the first Swedish absinthe in modern times it's a very good product.
Personally I would love to see it with less star anise. That would enable the full potential of the drink which I can clearly tell is there in the background.
Hartsmar scores Absinthe Valkyria 74 out of 100