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Absinthe Again

I guess you all like your mystic, mythic spirits with the green glow.

Because when I posted about my first experience tasting absinthe (St. George Spirits’ Absinthe Verte, to be exact), boy, did you guys have a lot to say about it.

Quite a few of you wrote in, touting yet another absinthe — this one with the irresistible name of Le Tourment Verte (“The Green Torment”).  Maybe we should nickname it the “absinthe to the stars.” After all, it’s made the rounds of Oscar parties, the Sundance Film Festival, and Virgin America flights.

With that kind of cache, I had to try it. And what better day to partake of the Green Fairy than on a day made for green — St. Patrick’s Day?

Le Tourment Verte was kind enough to send me two tiny (airline-size) samples to try, packaged in pretty etched bottles. The regular 750ml bottle retails for about $47.

The color really grabs you. Unlike the St. George one with its green tea-like color, Le Tourment Verte is a bold emerald green. It’s only when you pour the contents into a glass, though, that you realize the bottle is tinted dark green. And it’s only on closer inspection when you read the label that you see the spirit contains artificial coloring, too. Hmmm….

In a shot glass, this 100-proof spirit is almost the color of Scope mouthwash. My husband took a whiff and even declared that it smelled a little Aqua Velva-ish. Hmmm….

I tried it first just straight. It was definitely far sweeter than the St. George absinthe, so much so that I can’t even imagine adding a water-dripped-sugar-cube to it, which is the old-school method of enjoying absinthe. I don’t think I’d want it even sweeter than it already was.

The taste? Like licorice mixed with toothpaste. Yeah, not exactly a winning combination.

Next, I tried diluting it with a few ice cubes. The Le Tourment Verte turned a shade of seafoam green. Pretty if it were a summer frock. But a little odd for a beverage hue.

I’d like to say that the ice made the spirit more pleasing to the palate. But try as I might, I couldn’t bring myself to drink beyond one more sip.

Consider this one Green Fairy that was far from magical. Hmmph.