Absinthe Review: Most important facts
- ALANDIA Verte is a naturally green colored Absinthe.
- This Absinthe is made with real wormwood (artemisia absinthium) from France.
- The taste is balanced and smooth with only a little bitterness.
What is actually original Absinthe?
ALANDIA Verte is an original Absinthe made by ALANDIA Spirits. The design of the bottle looks vintage, the label also reads “Absinthe Supérieure” so maybe you ask yourself, what is actually original Absinthe?
Original Absinthe means that it is close to the 19th century originals. First and foremost this means that the brand in question is made with wormwood (artemisia absinthium). If this is not the case, you have a Pastis or Anise, both spirits are made with fennel and aniseed but no wormwood. Original means as well, that the Absinthe is naturally colored with coloring herbs. No artificial colorings should be used. The latter is often the case for mass-marketed Absinthes, as artificial coloring is less complex and of course cheaper. Artificially green colored Absinthes are as well stable in color, meaning that you can put the bottle into direct sunlight and nothing will happen. This is often a retailer requirement to guarantee a long shelf life.
In comparison, natural green Absinthe can loose its green color, as sunlight is harmful for the green chlorophyll coloration. But it is imporant to know, that this does not affect the quality. It is just a natural process. The color turns from green to a brown tone, called “feuilles morte”, the color of a fallen leaf. A naturally colored Absinthe is how a green Absinthe should be made, because wisely chosen the coloring herbs add the finishing touch to the distillate.
As ALANDIA Verte is naturally colored every bottle is wrapped in paper to protect the natural green color from direct sunlight. After opening you should rewrap the bottle and store it in a dark place to keep its natural green color as long as possible.
ALANDIA Verte: Original Absinthe label design
ALANDIA Verte’s label is inspired by a vintage original: Absinthe R. Large from the 19th century. Nevertheless, the design was only used as a template, unique elements were added, that describe what ALANDIA Verte is about. For example you can see two silver lions in a blue and red shield at the top of the label. This emblem is the city emblem of Fougerolles, the city where ALANDIA Verte is distilled.
Fougerolles was already during the peak of the Absinthe era known for producing high-quality Absinthes. Together with Pontarlier it was the “capitol” of Absinthe. Many distilleries were located here, one of them was the Devoille distillery where ALANDIA Verte is distilled. To be precise, the Devoille distillery was founded in 1859 by Paul Devoille. Therefore it can look back on a long company heritage.
On the ALANDIA Verte (and R. Large label) you can also spot a wormwood leaf in the background. It is present, because ALANDIA Verte uses high-quality wormwood from Fougerolles. The Devoille distillery has its own wormwood fields and cultivates Absinthes famous herb like in the old days: Every year in July the tall wormwood plants are harvested by hand and dried in the so called “séchoir”, a wooden hut. It was done like this 150 years ago. The whole process guarantees a very aromatic quality, which is quite important, as original Absinthe should have the distinctive floral though slightly bitter taste of wormwood.
ALANDIA Verte: Smell, color, louche, mouthfeel, taste
If you want to review an Absinthe you should first smell at the opened bottle and have a closer look at the undiluted color once it is in the Absinthe glass. ALANDIA Verte has a fresh and herbal aroma with sweet notes of anise. No harsh or sharp notes of the alcohol are present (although the spirit has 65% alcohol by volume). The green tones are bright and clear, reflecting lights in a magical way. Once ice cold water is added ALANDIA Verte louches to a dense opalescent white. Green tones are still detectable but overall the louche looks innocent und pure.
After you have completely diluted the Absinthe you should smell another time at the glass. Did the initial aromas change? For ALANDIA Verte you still have this irresistible floral scent, but it is now smoother, as the liquor is diluted with water. It reminds a bit of herbal milk, somehow fresh but creamy and slightly sweet…
Once you take the first sip the fresh and herbal taste of anise and fennel hit your taste buds. Enough room is left for the other herbs reducing the “licorice” taste. Slightly grassy tones of genepi follow (genepi is another wormwood specie that is part of the recipe) and finish in a complex and floral taste of wormwood.
Below you can see a video how ALANDIA Verte should be prepared. The traditional way with ice cold water and 1 sugar cube is recommended. You can also skip the sugar if you like, as anise and fennel already give this Absinthe a natural sweet taste.
Overall impression of ALANDIA Verte Absinthe
Intentionally, ALANDIA Verte is not the most complex Absinthe. The focus is set on the floral notes of wormwood, which we really love. As this Absinthe is so smooth and balanced you want to drink more than just one glass. This sets this Verte apart from heavier wine alcohol based Absinthes, which you really have to drink slowly, sip by sip.
We recommend ALANDIA Verte to first-timers and connoisseurs alike. Beginners will most likely appreciate the fresh taste of this Absinthe, not overpowering on fennel therefore reducing the “licorice” taste. The latter can detect the individual components: Fresh notes of green anise, balanced out with slightly grassy tones of genepi finishing in a complex and floral taste of wormwood.
We hope that you enjoyed this article. If you already have tested ALANDIA Verte please let us know, what you think about this Absinthe and leave a comment on this page. If you want to buy a bottle of ALANDIA Verte just visit our online store.
Green greetings from the world of Absinthe,
Mike from the ALANDIA-Team