Vieux Carré Absinthe is produced by Philadelphia Distilling, but it takes its name from the New Orleans French Quarter. The first bottle of Vieux Carré Absinthe was released in December 2008, making it the first legal absinthe to be distilled, bottled and sold on the east coast in nearly 100 years.
Vieux Carré is batch-distilled in a custom copper pot still from ingredients like grand and petite wormwood, star anise, melissa, fennel and spearmint. The spirit is greenish-yellow and very aromatic, with aromas of fennel/anise, mint and citrus.
Absinthe is rarely consumed straight, but downing the 120 proof Vieux Carré neat douses your palate with sweet licorice notes and lots of heat. While drinkable, a proper dilution is preferable. Dissolving a sugar cube with cold water – about four parts water to one part absinthe – produces a murky, opaque louche. The flavors blend together in a nicely-balanced mix of sweet and herbal. Anise leads the way with some mint following, and the sweetness fades to dry on the finish.
All in all, Vieux Carré Absinthe is pretty good. Price wise, it’s a solid value for its category, and the decorative bottle makes a gorgeous addition to any liquor display.
- 60% Alcohol by Volume