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Enigma Verte FDC, oak aged absinthe

ENIGMA VERTE FDC ABSINTHE

70 cl 69.2% abv

London IWSC 2013 - Bronze medal

Enigma Verte FDC (élevé en fût de chêne or raised in oak barrels) is an unfiltered premium absinthe made from grape-base alcohol and a combination of aromatic herbs and plants, including grande and petite wormwood, anise, fennel and hyssop. The absinthe has been carefully aged in 300 litre French oak barrels to give it a smooth creamy finish which conjures up the complexities of a pre-ban absinthe.

This absinthe will appeal to those looking to experience the complexities of a vintage pre-ban absinthe. Our Enigma Verte was rested in Tronçais oak casks for a carefully judged period of time to pick up just a hint of oak and vanilla. Tronçais oak barrels are used extensively for aging cognac and the top red wines of Bordeaux. The absinthe is bottled at cask strength which is slightly lower than the normal 72% abv, this is because some evaporation ocurrs during the storage, the ‘Angels’ share’. It has an olive green colour with golden yellow highlights, an aroma of toffee and caramel overlaying anise and wormwood. The louche is classic, forming swiftly with green tinges and the flavour is smooth and creamy with wormwood and anise to the fore. The finish is long and smooth. Overall the initial impression on the nose is redolent of a vintage absinthe, the herbal qualities of the Enigma verte have been softened and harmonised.

Colour: Barrel aging has taken the vibrant peridot green of the original and toned it down a bit, without creating a full fuille morte effect. Inviting.
Louche: as with the original, a nice build, leading to a well formed, deep louche with hints of yellow and white with touches of brown
Aroma: anise is still prominant with fennel, veronica, and wormwood as supporting players. I still get the tea aromas as well, but this time they are complimented by an underlying sweetness that is reminiscent of mallow flowers.
Flavour/Mouthfeel: Mouth coating and still not too thick. The wormwood has definitely been toned down by the barrel aging, an effect I’ve also noticed when making barrel aged bitters. It smooths it out, leaving the flavors without as much astringency.
Finish: wormwood and anise, but accompanied by a slight tannic dryness brought on by the barrels.
Overall: A very interesting riff on the original. Barrel aging can certainly play a decisive roll in rounding out flavors. Grab bottles (or samples) of both and experience the differences that wood can bring to the experience. I enjoyed it. Brian Robinson, Wormwood Society

International Wine & Spirit Competition Bronze Medal