Absinthe - François Guy
Distillerie GUY- Pontarlier, France
Absinthe François Guy
PROOF: 90 (45%)
TYPE: French, Clear (Blanche), 10 mg/kg Thujone, Distilled
PRICE: $60.00 1L (roughly) plus shipping
Note: This is a French Absinthe distilled in Pontarlier, which might qualify as the center of French Absinthe distillation in years past. Guy is an old historical brand and this absinthe is trying to tie into the history with the appearance of the bottle and label.
First Impression: Anise and mint - almost enough to curl your nose hairs, alcohol in background rather than foreground. Sweetish pastis/licorice, star anise smell overall.
Appearance: Clear, bright, ever so slight yellow/green cast to it which is Indicator of the use of dried wormwood - and no attempts to color or dope it with dyes which to me is a good thing. On swirling, leaves a thin coat on the glass with scalloping and very thin legs developing. Louche is decent but not awe inspiring (turns opalescent but no swirls, pools,etc.).
Taste: Not overly complex- mint hits you first, with star anise on its heel coating your tongue.Very pastis-like ending (think Pernod). Decently made, if a somewhat unorthodox taste to it.
Drinks: The French absinthe ritual involves water fountains, sugar, spoons, and you pour the absinthe in the glass then put the spoon over the glass put a sugar cube on it and drip water from a purpose built fountain over until it louches (opalesces, turns cloudy, etc.) and the right amount of dilution (to personal taste-variable) is reached.The Czech method is more fraught with danger (especially if you have had a few already) as it involves fire and highly combustible liquids. You put the spoon over an empty glass then place the sugar cube on the spoon, then pour the absinthe over the sugar,soaking it thoroughly and then torch the sugar cube, letting it burn down and caramelize the sugar, you then pour the water over the remains of the sugar cube and stir it in. Photos of this particular method are availableon www.absintheium.com . Caution must be exercised to avoid spilling the flaming liquid or having the glass shatter from the heat. 0-Frankly I find the Czech method showy, dangerous, and tedious, all at once.
Other: Due to the relatively low proof I reccomend a 3-1 max dilution (most are 6-1 dilution) -if you must add water.
Bottle: Green/brown glass wine bottle shape - much in the style its forebears with a old style label.cork closure and wood cap.
Final Thoughts: Pleasant enough, a trifle different taste. Distillation is good. A bit pricey for what it is, but not excessively so.
Excellent, quick-loading web page with attractive graphics, drinks recipes, and loads of information for the novice to expert. Highly recommend as a reference source for all things absinthe and great links.