SWM and SWF seek absinthe vendor for LTR.
September 19, 2008 7:38 AM   Subscribe

My good friend, a lover of all things herbal, has never tried absinthe. I'd love to give her the opportunity before she moves away in two weeks. Can you recommend an importer that can ship to the US in that time-frame and won't break my bank?

I'm looking to spend less than $100 (with shipping) for a 750ml or liter bottle of something authentic-ish and get it to Colorado before October 3.

I've only tried a few Czech varieties, and of those Thul Absinthium 1792 adequately works for our purposes: it louches and has a high anise/herbal flavor, a moderate to high thujone* content, and a high proof. However, if you have any other brand recommendations to go with the vendor recommendation, I'd appreciate your thoughts.

*I, too, am somewhat dubious of the psychotropic effects of thujone, but I'd still like to offer the party a drink with a high content of it to allow the guests decide for themselves. Of course, for me the experience will be reading revolutionary poetry by candlelight in my friend's now empty apartment.
posted by glibhamdreck to Food & Drink (13 answers total) 7 users marked this as a favorite
Are you opposed to the US-made absinthe? It is available through Bevmo, at least here in CA.
posted by gingerbeer at 7:52 AM on September 19, 2008

Three or four years ago I ordered from alandia.de a couple times. I can't remember exactly how long shipping took but it was around 2 weeks and I can vouche that they're legit. I can't remember the one I ordered and none of the picture are ringing and bells, nevertheless I didn't have any weird experiences, only drunkenness.

I just realized that it seems like I can remember much about my whole absinthe experience, maybe it really was hallucinogenic!
posted by wolfkult at 7:59 AM on September 19, 2008

The absinthe you can get commercially in the states is basically extremely potent green aniseed liquor.

If you want the real deal, you have to make it yourself.
posted by Freen at 8:09 AM on September 19, 2008

I spent way too much time on this absinthe buyer's guide before I made my purchase - it has ratings and descriptions and was definitely useful. I used absinthe.de for the actual buy, but I don't remember how long it took to ship.
posted by soma lkzx at 8:12 AM on September 19, 2008

We've had good luck in the past with Absinthe Classics, but the website seems to be down at the moment.

Which is not an encouraging sign.
posted by jquinby at 8:34 AM on September 19, 2008

Liquers de France. Only place you need. For a first time imbiber, I would go with the Verte de Fougerolles.
posted by kaseijin at 9:02 AM on September 19, 2008

I learned all I know from this thread. From that thread I went here. I ordered from them three times, each time got super fast delivery with the bottles packaged up very well. I highly recommend them.
posted by vito90 at 9:05 AM on September 19, 2008

Hey! Kasejin - and there's the member that dropped all the science in the thread I posted.
posted by vito90 at 9:05 AM on September 19, 2008

Also, this is patently false. There is plenty of literature online and in print (in addition to syringe samples from vintage bottles) that refutes this.

Fee Verte, for some good background information.
posted by kaseijin at 9:08 AM on September 19, 2008 [1 favorite]

Ah, I just saw the "less that $100" stipulation. With the US economy taking a battering, and LDF's ordering being tied to the British Pound... ordering from them may be out of the picture (though the Verte de Fougerolles may not be too too much of a stretch).

For a less expensive bottle, I would look around the States for a product called Lucid. It's made by Ted Breaux (the same chemist/distiller behind the highly touted Jade absinthes) for the US market, and it's a fairly quality product. It's the first true absinthe that's legally marketable in the US, though it doesn't pack the punch of its French cousins. Still - you pay in dollars and won't have to pony up for shipping.
posted by kaseijin at 9:20 AM on September 19, 2008

Absinthe is no longer banned in the US.

Kubler (should have an umlaut over the u) is a Swiss brand that's distributed in the US. There are other Swiss and French brands distributed here, in addition to the US-distilled brands. Check out the Real Absinthe Blog for more information.
posted by Sidhedevil at 9:36 AM on September 19, 2008

Integrity Spirit's(out of Portland, OR) Trillium Absinthe was quite nice. I'm not sure where it's distributed or how much a bottle is..but it's $10 a glass at the bar attached to the distillery.
posted by mnology at 9:38 AM on September 19, 2008

I've had Jade Liquors' Jade Verte Suisse 65, and it was delicious. It will run about $50-$75 more than your price range, but the shipping is fast and insured to arrive without any troubles from customs.

I've also herd good things about St. George's absinthe, but I haven't tried it yet. I've seen it selling for $75.

Czech absinthe is a joke*, and thujone's been pretty thoroughly discredited; high thujone content is a gimmick, nothing more. Traditional and pre-ban absinthes had a very low thujone content.

*Please, please don't take this personally in any way. It comes from my own experiences and reports from sources I trust.
posted by lekvar at 1:20 PM on September 19, 2008

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