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WikdWaze
09-04-2004, 06:31 PM
What fruits could you use to get a green melomel? I happened across an absinthe site and thought the color was almost magical. Absinthe gets it's color from the chlorophyll of all the distilled herbs in it, not very practical for a mead.

dogglebe
09-04-2004, 10:16 PM
I don't think there's any green fruit. You may want to try a kiwi melomel and add a little food coloring. It's deceitful, I know....


Phil

Oskaar
09-04-2004, 11:15 PM
Absinthe link in case you're feeling froggy:

http://www.deadflesh.org/fear/absinthe.html

Green fleshed fruits:

Fantasy Seedless Grapes
Thompson Seedless Grapes
Honey Dew Melon
Earli Dew Melon
Mediterranean Melon
Galia Melon
Haogen Melon (This one looks really cool)
Crenshaw Melon (some varieties)
Santa Claus Melon (Ho Ho Ho)
Marseilles (Italian Honey Fig)
Avocado
Watermelon (Citrullus lanatus in West and Southern Africa) also called Tsamma

I think that maybe a mixture of melon, cucumber, kiwi and some grapes might give you a pale greenish color. Then you could add some mint to bring it up a bit.

Good luck,

Oskaar

JoeM
09-05-2004, 12:04 AM
I was looking to purchase a bottle of absinthe when i was england last summer and to my surprise there was about 8 different brands of the stuff on the shelf. i began to read the labels in an attempt to try and pick one and noticed that every single one of them contained artificial color. somewhat of a dissapointment i suppose.

Oskaar
09-05-2004, 12:14 AM
Ya know,

I never checked the bottle that closely! I usually drink Pernod Absinthe when I'm in Europe, but, I never really thought that there would be coloring. I'll have to check it out.

Oskaar

WikdWaze
09-05-2004, 05:14 AM
I researched a bit on absinthe, trying to find the source of the color. Originally the color came from the chlorophyll of all the distilled herbs. Of course, cheaper versions came along which used all sorts of things to imitate the color of the real thing. It was these cheap imitations that ended up causing the bad reputation of absinthe and helping to get it banned. From what I can gather, few, if any, modern absinthe makers actually adhere to the original methods or recipe. Almost all of them follow the path of the imitators of old, except they at least have the decency to use non-toxic ingredients.

I just like the color, I think it'd make a popular drink. I'm wondering now if adding a small amount of blue fruit wouldn't combine with the amber of the honey to create a green tint. It'd be a weak melomel, probably little fruit flavor. If I can't find a fruit/veggie/herb combination to create the color I won't bother with it. I don't like artificial flavors and colors. It's not that I think they're "wrong", I just think they're cheating.

dogglebe
09-05-2004, 08:31 AM
I would imagine that, if you were to add enough blue fruiit (blueberries) to make the batch green, you'd have a poor-tasting blueberry melomel.


Phil

JoeM
09-05-2004, 10:55 AM
i'm curious as to what blue fruits there are. Blueberries actually turn mead purple.

dogglebe
09-05-2004, 11:15 AM
Reading your response reminded of the George Carlin bit on how there isn't any blue food.

Phil

Oskaar
09-05-2004, 01:03 PM
George Carlin always cracked me up. The seven words you can't say on TV were one of my all time favorites!

I wonder if George ever drinks mead?! I kinda think he does because of the Hippy Dippy Weatherman!

Oskaar

dogglebe
09-05-2004, 08:24 PM
I don't think it was mead that inspired the Hippy Dippy Weatherman....


Phil

ScottS
09-06-2004, 07:02 PM
Absinthe recipes:
http://homedistiller.org/vodka.htm#absinthe

Scroll down a ways to
"If you wish to have a traditionally colored drink, add to the litre or so of liquor the following:"

That should get you the color you want.

Derf
09-07-2004, 01:23 AM
Of course, cheaper versions came along which used all sorts of things to imitate the color of the real thing. It was these cheap imitations that ended up causing the bad reputation of absinthe and helping to get it banned. From what I can gather, few, if any, modern absinthe makers actually adhere to the original methods or recipe. Almost all of them follow the path of the imitators of old, except they at least have the decency to use non-toxic ingredients.

It's my understanding that absinthe was banned because the herb that gives the drink it's name has psychoactive--some would say toxic--properties. A similar flavour can be achieved using other herbs from the same family, but if you aren't drinking a hallucinogen, you aren't drinking the real thing.

Wormwood = absinthe: Hallucinogenic.
Southern wormwood = petit absinthe: Not quite as interesting.

Oskaar
09-07-2004, 03:02 AM
Here's a good article from Maxim on Absinthe with some taste tests. This was originally printed in the August 2003 issue, featuring Anna Kournakova on the cover.

I don't know why I mentioned that, other than, it would be nice to be swilling some high end Absinthe with a high-end looker like her!

http://www.maximonline.com/grit/articles/article_5372.html

Cheers,

Oskaar

PS I have personal experience with Pernod, Vert-Suisse 65, Emile 68, and La Fee. I would put the Vert-Suisse first, followed by La Fee, Emile and Pernod respectively. Pernod is the easiest to find while in Europe from my experience.

WikdWaze
09-07-2004, 03:02 AM
It's my understanding that absinthe was banned because the herb that gives the drink it's name has psychoactive--some would say toxic--properties. A similar flavour can be achieved using other herbs from the same family, but if you aren't drinking a hallucinogen, you aren't drinking the real thing.

Wormwood = absinthe: Hallucinogenic.
Southern wormwood = petit absinthe: Not quite as interesting.

That was one of the reasons given, but turns out to be largely false. The item in question is thujone, found in wormwood. It has a similar structure to THC although it behaves completely differently. And it is toxic, but it appears in such trace amounts that you would succumb to alcohol poisoning long before you drank enough to die from thujone toxicity. Even at the height of absinthe's popularity there was dispute about the secondary effects of the elixir. Some claimed it had mind-altering capabilities beyond it's alcohol content, others saw no such effect. In a country used to drinking wine, I imagine a 140 proof drink would be quite an experience.


Absinthe recipes:
http://homedistiller.org/vodka.htm#absinthe

Scroll down a ways to
"If you wish to have a traditionally colored drink, add to the litre or so of liquor the following:"

That should get you the color you want. Very helpful. They even offer several options to replace the wormwood. When it comes time to try it I'll have to find a pale honey, then throw a quantity of those four ingredients into the secondary and see what happens ;D

Derf
09-07-2004, 03:55 AM
Near the top of the absinthe section on the homedistilers.org site, it points out that, "Pernod is Absinthe without the wormwood for legal reasons." Much drug policy doesn't make any sence, but it seems that regardless of wormwood's actually toxicity, it is the reason that genuine absinthe is band.

I have a bottle of absinthe that I was able to purchase here in Nova Scotia. Brand name is Absente. It uses southern wormwood instead of common wormwood to get around the leagal problems.

WikdWaze
09-07-2004, 04:09 AM
The ban, at least here in the States, was on any alcoholic beverage containing wormwood. Oddly enough, the only such drink at the time was absinthe. http://www.gumbopages.com/food/beverages/absinthe.html

Lots of info there, and some links.

dogglebe
09-07-2004, 06:04 AM
Absinthe can easily be ordered via the internet from Europe; they don't have a problem shipping to the USA.


Phil

JoeM
09-07-2004, 09:49 AM
the funny thing is that although drinks containing wormwood are illegal, wormwood itself is not and can be purchased in many homebrew supply stores.

WikdWaze
09-07-2004, 03:30 PM
the funny thing is that although drinks containing wormwood are illegal, wormwood itself is not and can be purchased in many homebrew supply stores.That's government for you. Wormwood is not a controlled substance, the FDA banned it's use in beverages destined to be sold. The ATF and DEA won't come knocking on your door if you mix up a batch. Interestingly enough, the same holds true for humble root beer. There is a compound found in the sassafrass root which is a known carcinogen. The FDA has banned the use of pure sassafrass extract because of this. You can still use sassafrass and wormwood in drinks if you can provide proof that you have removed 100% of the banned compound. Who would have thought that genuine root beer was illegal in the USA?

ScottS
09-07-2004, 06:35 PM
What drives me nuts is that sassafrass was determined to be a carcinogen by giving megadoses of it to rats. Well geez, table salt is a carcinogen too, in huge quantities. ::) Makes me wonder if the whole thing is a ploy by the soft drink industry to eliminate competition. Lucky for me, I just have to go down the street and dig up some sassafrass. ;)

WikdWaze
09-08-2004, 02:35 AM
Hate to say it, but no government ban has ever been based on anything other than some industry's economic ambitions.

Marijuana was banned because the hemp industry threatened the forestry/paper industry.

The recent ban on ephedra because 150 deaths over a period of a couple decades posed an "unacceptable risk" ??? Meanwhile thousand die each year from smoking, but the FDA considers that an acceptable risk ??? Somehow the logic eludes me. I guess the supplement industry hasn't lined enough pockets yet.