Saturday, February 25, 2017

Weeks 44 and 45: Golan Heights Revisited [52 Whispers From The Muse]




Snow Fairy batch #5/Mon Jardin
Overall Rating: 3.7/3.7
Appearance: 4.0/4.0
Louche: 3.5/3.5
Aroma: 3.5/3.5
Flavor/Mouthfeel: 3.5/3.5
Finish: 3.5/4.0
Overall: 4.0/4.0


Style: Blanche
ABV: 53%/72%.
Country: Israel
Distillery: Golan Heights Distillery

Appearance: Both are perfectly clear with no sediment or discoloration.
Louche: Both louched well, clouding up easily. I'd say that it seemed that Snow Fairy filled out more quickly but on rewatching a poorly shot video that I'm not going to post, it may have been because the fountain drip on that side was way heavier.
Aroma: I opened the Snow Fairy first which immediately started to bloom. Opening the Mon Jardin only filled the room more fully with the unique scent of this Absinthe. Similar to batch #1 but definitely more forthcoming. 
Flavor/Mouthfeel: Very unique, significant floral and Anise without being sweet and Wormwood without being too bitter. Coriander is quite noticeable along with a significant Calamus. The Mon Jardin is bolder but that is to be expected with equal parts of water/absinthe between the 2. 
Finish: I guess I shouldn't be surprised at the slightly different flavor profile between these 2 as dilution greatly affects what flavors are brought out in an Absinthe. The lighter Snow Fairy is a bit more floral while the Mon Jardin has more bite and a bit of tongue numbing.
Overall: Definite, significant improvements from batch #1, more detailed and complex. Although the scores were quite similar, the edge, for me, goes to the Mon Jardin. I just tend to prefer higher proof blanches.


David Zibel of Golan Heights Distillery in Israel was gracious enough to send me an updated version of His Snow Fairy Absinthe Blanche as well as it's 72% AVB undiluted sister, Mon Jardin. While I did enjoy the originality of the first batch, it was very monochromatic. This updated version keeps the similarly unique flavor but with more complexity that you can now start sorting out a quick parade of flavors.

According to David, Snow Fairy and Mon Jardin consist of Artemisia Absinthium, Anise Seed, Fennel, Coriander, Lavender, Calamus, Elecampane Root, Sassafras, Cardamom, Chamomile, Angelica, and Star Anise. I'm not familiar with Elecampane Root at all or, I'm ashamed to admit, Sassafras outside of Yosemite Sam. I was really trying to find another brand this was similar to by aroma, but I really couldn't and that's certainly not a bad thing at all. I do like different.

I was hoping to get a good video in the snow but it was an unseasonably warm February week here in New England so I'll go with the pics I took when it did actually snow. I've been sitting on this review for too long waiting for the next snow and it's been a while since my last review. I was nine short of getting all 52 done last year but that's no reason to not keep going and then going past 52. There are so many more Absinthes to try and I already have over a dozen more bottles on hand, but more on that on National Absinthe Day...