Our old friend Philippe Fumoux has done something unimaginable even just a few years ago: started a completely new distillery, or rather, ‘absintherie,’ from scratch. Philippe’s passion for the green fairy is such that he is launching his new distillery – The Absintherie Bourbonnaise – with not one but five new absinthes!
Three of the absinthes take us back to some of the moments between the storming of the Bastille and the present day.
Absinthe Verte Napoléon III is absolutely unique, and unlike any other absinthe available today, perhaps due to the inclusion of some unusual herbs more commonly used back in 1857, when the recipe is from, than today. This absinthe is named in the honour of Napoléon III, who put Vichy, then a small spa town, on the map, transforming it into a place of impressive luxury attracting visitors from the world over. A train station, acres of landscaped gardens, opulant houses, and a stylish casino followed. Coming back to 2011, this is an absinthe that demands to be tried, simply because it’s so different!
Based on an even earlier handwritten recipe from the Swiss Jura mountains, Blanche Louis XVIII Absinthe is a floral, feminine absinthe, with wonderfully rich anise, notes of citrus and a subtle element of mint in the finish. The recipe includes some interesting additions not found in other absinthes today, including small quantities of sanicle, tansy, and varieties of plant from the wormwood family, artemisia, found growing in the alps.
The Verte IIIe République Absinthe is named after the period from which the recipe came. A replica of Absinthe Abel Bresson, a Belle Époque brand. The process and ingredients follow notes handwritten by the master distiller 100 years ago. It isn’t possible to know precisely how the original absinthe tasted back then, nobody alive today has tasted vintage Absinthe Abel Bresson, but the Verte IIIe République is certainly a success with grand wormwood, fennel and anise in perfect balance, with a bouquet suggesting fresh herbs and lemon balm while remaining pleasantly delicate, and achieving a beautifully perfect louche.
Boggy Absinthe was the result of a curious collaboration. While Monsieur Fumoux was setting up his new distillery, he was in regular contact with absintheur and amateur distiller Bogumil Rychlak, in Poland. The aim of the effort was to turn one of Bogumil’s small-batch absinthes inspired by a historical absinthe into a larger scale production, making it available for everyone to enjoy. The Boggy Absinthe (Boggy being an affectionate way of saying Bogumil) has a beautiful ‘feuille morte’ (dead-leaf) colour, as if it has already been aging for a century. The label, painted by Bogumil himself, depicts an a wise man out gathering wild wormwood from the mountains. The style is a tribute to the hand-painted labels found on Polish spirit bottles from the 1820s to the 1930s.
And finally, we have something unique. Unique not only because it has some very exotic botanicals, but because the recipe came from 1930s French Algeria, after the ban on absinthe! Absinthe de Vichy stays true to the precise original manuscript. Of course, the classic wormwood, anise and fennel are there, as they should be. What makes the Absinthe de Vichy interesting is the subtle quantities of other plants, including sassafras, lemon and cinnamon.
Philippe Fumoux says that this is a light and refreshing absinthe, “perfect for a spa town like Vichy”, where this absinthe is distilled, and its namesake! Due to its lighter than usual anise, the Absinthe de Vichy is an ideal introduction to the world of absinthe, while remaining authentic and respectable. The interesting botanicals will appeal to those more experienced with absinthe. Absinthes.com is the only major absinthe supplier with Absinthe de Vichy. Uniquely refreshing!
Try four of these absinthes today with our Absintherie Bourbonnaise set (and save yourself a rather decent 10% at the same time):
- 1 absinthe Verte IIIe République – 50 cl
- 1 absinthe Blanche Louis XVIII – 50 cl
- 1 absinthe Verte Napoléon III – 50 cl
- 1 absinthe Absinthe de Vichy – 50 cl