Obsello Absenta 50° Review

Obsello Absenta 50°
Reviewed 15 Nov 2008
sans sucre


Note: This absinthe is sold internationally with two different labels, one which say ‘absinthe’ and the other which says ‘absenta’ (absinthe in Spanish). They are exactly the same product.

Aah, good old Spanish absenta… those were the days.

I remember a time, not that long ago, when Carfax and I would place an order to an online bottle shop in Spain, and sit in our respective living rooms for about two weeks clock-watching and praying that we would get a lazy customs person this time, or that they wouldn’t realise that the booze in their hand was illegal to import into Australia, or that they didn’t know what absinthe was. Just let it get through! Most of the time it did. Some of the time, however, it did not. It was the latter scenario which prompted us to investigate the prohibition on absinthe active in Australia at the time, and led to an interesting discovery… but that’s another story.

What I was getting at is that I have very fond memories of my first Spanish absinthe experiences, even though they were all oil mixes and of questionable connoisseurial value. Though I do still say that Serpis is one of my all-time favourites. It’s red, for f*cks sake.

Given the above, you can understand how excited I was when I found out that I was getting a bottle of Obsello, the first premium, distilled absinthe verte to be produced in Spain. If you are a crusty old fan of dodgy Spanish absinthe, and remember sitting by candlelight, listening to Bauhaus and waiting for the mailman to come – wait ’til you try this one.

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Obsello is an absinthe verte in the French tradition, and it is a distinctly francophile nose which hits you as soon as you open the bottle (which, speaking of bottles, is a dark green round shouldered champagne-style bottle with ornamental black wax and nice label art. The dark green glass is, obviously, good to protect against inadvertent or premature feuille mort colouring). The anise is definitely present, and I would go as far as to say that it is prominent in the first bloom of scent however it is soon matched by a fennel sweetness, which I tend to think is responsible for the ‘mint’ note people have mentioned in international reviews of Obsello.

The colour is a beautiful crystalline peridot which louches to a lovely, thick Impressionist sage green. The louche also amplifies the sweet floral character of the absinthe. Interestingly my Obsello passed the traditional absinthe nose test – I poured a glass, left the room and five minutes later I returned – and it has perfumed the entire room. Not bad, Pedro…

Obsello is distilled on a grape alcohol base, which supports the lighter, upper notes of fennel and hyssop, while the wormwood offers a nice counter-balance quite apparent in the finish and lingers for a good few minutes. The anethole is characteristic, however it’s not overpowering. I did get ‘dead man’s tongue’ as I like to call it (the distinctive numb tongue caused by the anethole. Go through half a bottle of Pernod and you’ll dig what I’m talking about), although it was very subtle, and rather enjoyable.

Obsello is for a fan of up-front French absinthes, and dirty old Goths who once loved their precious, rareified Spanish absenta. Only this is better.
Our Obsello was provided by the good people at Absinthesalon for the purposes of review.

Robert Dec 8th 2008 07:42 pm Absinthe brands,Absinthe Reviews,News,Reviews,Uncategorized No Comments yet Trackback URI

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