GSN Review: Mata Hari Absinthe

Mata Hari Website

It seems that there is a new absinthe on the market every month.  Mata Hari absinthe is somewhat of a misnomer, since it really falls into the herbal liqueur category.  Marketed for people who don’t like the strong anise character of traditional absinthe, Mata Hari has only a hint of anise.  Don’t get me wrong, there are plenty of herbal flavors going on here; but this is not your great grandfather’s absinthe.

The color is a light crystal green which louches into a milky white when cold water is added (as in an absinthe drip).   The nose is very unlike a traditional absinthe.  I picked up a strong herbal fennel like character, and hints of old world forest floor.   The first taste surprised me.   Absinthe is characteristically a high proof spirit, but this did not knock me off my feet.   It could be sipped without water.   Flavors include fennel, mint, cinnamon, roots, dried herbs, and only a hint of anise.   The bitterness of wormwood seems to be missing altogether.  This really reminded me of a distant cousin to Jagermeister.

My recommendation is that Mata Hari is a good introduction to herbal liqueurs, but for those using it for cocktail purposes should look elsewhere.  

Good Spirits Rating: ** (VS)

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