This absinthe was part of a limited edition, now sold out. The next edition of L'Ancienne will be available in 2015.
L'Ancienne is the result of years of research and experimentation with ancient techniques and herbs cultivars. It is distilled by Stefano Rossoni and Martin Zufanek at Zufanek's distillery, in micro-batches (under 100lt), using the finest custom-distilled wine alcohol, Pontarlier wormwood, selected Florence fennel, green anise, moldavian melissa, hyssop and petite absinthe. Every batch is intentionally unique with a different balance between the main aromatic notes.
Author of the book Absinthe Antiques, S.B. MacDonald had this to say - here is his review of Absinthe L'Ancienne:
L'Ancienne is a successful tribute to vintage absinthe, respectfully capturing the spirit of pre-ban. Its color neat is a natural rich amber/gold with hints of light olive. The louche develops evenly, and is thick and rich, with a well-defined layer on top. It ends in a creamy light green, with faint flashes of copper at the edges of the glass. Its aroma starts off powerfully, with strong earthy notes and the pleasant soft mustiness of wood and leather. This absinthe genuinely suggests the feeling of age. As water is added, the aroma softens, opening up with delicate floral and herbal elements, while still retaining its character.
L'Ancienne's flavor evokes a rich, sophisticated vintage absinthe; it is balanced, rounded, and complex. Wormwood and anise play well together, with the fruitiness of quality fennel softly tying it all together. Its finish unfolds gracefully with spice, pepper and citrus… all with gentleness and sophistication. A rich mouth-feel, slightly astringent, and a pleasant linger. I felt the finish was perfect for this absinthe's personality. The makers have created an absinthe that captures/mirrors time's effect on quality ingredients. It is delicious the day it arrives, but a bit of aging, and this absinthe will be stunningly good.
L’Ancienne is a carefully crafted homage to the absinthe of the Belle Époque that evokes a dimly lit Victorian sitting room, and reading a heavy leather-bound book by candlelight.
Stocks are very limited.
Martin decided to start producing absinthe in 2008, and created an absinthe which is the finest to come from the Czech Republic: Absinthe St. Antoine.
Pre-Ban vintage absinthe is unanimously acknowledged by absinthe experts as the gold standard for absinthe, thanks to its amazing room-filling aroma, creamy mouth-feel, astonishing complexity and the smoothness acquired with more than 100 years of aging.
Unfortunately, pre-ban absinthe bottles are extremely rare (their prices can reach several thousands of dollars) and for this reason they're a treat that few people can afford. Absinthe experts unanimously say that no modern absinthe has reached that level of oaky, leathery aroma/mouth-feel/smoothness. Not yet.
Other skilled absinthe distillers have already tried to reproduce how different brands of Pre-Ban absinthe tasted back in the 19th century, when they were a couple of years old and savored by absintheurs all around the world. Stefano Rossoni decided to push the envelope, trying to reproduce how pre-ban absinthe tastes NOW, after the more than 100 years of aging which has turned it into the "holy grail" everybody talks about.
- At first, savour your L'Ancienne with half a piece of sugar. Then, add more or less according to your taste.
- For one measure of absinthe (3cl), add 2 to 5 measures of fresh water.