Food & Wine
Author: Carey Jones
Date: Tuesday, April 29, 2014
"Don’t confuse yellow Chartreuse with green. The latter is delicious in its own way, but more aggressively flavored, less sweet and a good bit more alcoholic. It’s excellent in cocktails, too, but not in these recipes."
Score: 91 Points
Author: Kara Newman
Date: Wednesday, January 5, 2011
"Yellow, faintly tinged with green. The aroma is bright, mild and lime-lollipop sweet, although the flavor is more herbal, with hints of mint and anise, and a pronounced licorice finish and alcohol sting. Thick, syrupy and tongue-coating."
Date: Friday, October 2, 2009
“A milder and sweeter version of the herb-and-honey-flavored liqueur, has been enjoying some long-overdue attention at better bars and wine shops. Make that really long-overdue. An order of cloistered French monks has been brewing it since 1838 from a secret recipe of herbs, plants and flowers that lend each Chartreuse its natural color. Sip chilled.”
Grade: Hot trend
Date: Wednesday, September 17, 2008
“Intriguing notes of tarragon, black pepper, juniper, and cumin; smooth and thick but not cloying with a light finish of anise.”
The Washington Post
Date: Tuesday, September 11, 2007
Summary: If the traditional way to enjoy an absinthe—with a little water and sugar—doesn't appeal, try this cocktail, which dates from the early 20th century. Its anise, herbal and fruit notes will make you feel as if you're sitting on the Left Bank in a beret. If you can't get the real stuff, an absinthe substitute such as Absente or Pernod works just fine.
3/4 ounce absinthe (may substitute Absente or Pernod)
3/4 ounce yellow Chartreuse (do not use green)
3/4 ounce apricot brandy
1 orange slice, for garnish
Fill a mixing glass two-thirds full with ice. Add the absinthe, yellow Chartreuse and apricot brandy; stir vigorously. Strain into a chilled martini glass. Garnish with the orange slice.
Adapted from Patrick Gavin Duffy's "Official Mixer's Manual" (Alta, 1934).
Tested by Michael Taylor for The Washington Post.
Grade: 'This drink will make you feel as if you're sitting on the Left Bank in a beret...'
The Spirit World
Author: Robert Hess
Date: Friday, April 20, 2007
In the early days of distillation, it was common for the alcohol produced to be seen as more medicinal then it was intoxicating, or at least that’s what people often convinced themselves of. It was thus also common for the distilled spirits to be combined with a variety of botanicals which would be seen as increasing the supposed restorative properties. One of these products is Chartreuse.
As the story goes, Chartreuse started its life as a manuscript for a complex recipe simply entitled “Elixir of Long Life”. This manuscript was presented to the Charthusian monks at Vauvert in 1605, and eventually was delivered to the Grande Chartreuse monastery in Voiron. There, the manuscript was carefully studied and attempts were made at trying to decipher its complex process. Brother Jerome Maubec, who ran the apothecary at the monastery, worked carefully at attempting to recreate the original product as described in the manuscript, but the task was so complex he wasn’t able to finish before his death. He passed his efforts on to his successor, Brother Antoine.
It was Brother Antoine who finally succeeded in translating the manuscript, and in 1737 began producing Chartreuse.
This already complex saga, continues its dramatic pace as the Carthusian monks were expelled from France in 1793, to return several years later and resumed production. Only to be expelled again in 1903 by French decree, losing not only their monastery, but their distillery as well, which were confiscated by the government.
The manuscript, and the precious recipe for Chartreuse however stayed safely in the hands of the monks who took refuge in Tarragona, Spain and were soon producing Chartreuse again. During this time, the French attempted to produce their own version of the recipe, but were never able to replicate the success of the monks. Eventually this business began to fail. Some local businessmen, seeing an opportunity bought up all of the shares of this almost bankrupt business, and sent them to the outcast monks in Tarragona as a gift.
The monks, once again in possession of their monastery and distillery, began once again to product their cherished product in France, where it continues to be produced to this day.
There are several different Chartreuse products, besides the green version which is most common; there is also a yellow which is of slightly lower proof, and not quite as intense in flavor. Chartreuse VEP is a higher end version, which has been aged in oak, and also comes in both green and yellow. These four products can be essentially used interchangeably, although there will be a noticeable difference in taste.
There are a variety of cocktails which use Chartreuse, one that I recently came across, and that I find to provide a wonderful introduction to this amazing product, is the Cloister:
1 1/2 ounce gin
1/2 ounce Yellow Chartreuse
1/2 ounce grapefruit juice
1/4 ounce lemon juice
1/4 ounce simple syrup
Shake with ice. Strain into a cocktail glass. Garnish with a grapefruit twist.
While this recipe does specifically call for yellow Chartreuse, it is also excellent with green.
Grade: ‘Chartreuse and the Cloister Cocktail’
The Liquid Muse
Author: Natalie Bovine-Muse
Date: Friday, April 20, 2007
35ml Finladia Lime Fusion
15ml Yellow Chartreuse
25ml lime juice
15ml Agave syrup
1 dash Egg white
Put all ingredients into a boston glass add ice and shake vigorously. Double strain into a chilled glass. Garnish with lime zest.
Salt Lake City Weekly
Author: Ted Scheffler
Date: Thursday, March 15, 2007
“…If you’ve never tried Chartreuse—particularly the “green death” flavor—it’s probably best summed up by the folks who market Chartreuse: “It tastes weird. The color is unthinkable. It’s outrageously strong, and it’s made by three monks who don’t talk to each other
Chartreuse—a French liqueur whose origins date back to 1737—is probably best described as “medicinal” tasting. One friend says it’s reminiscent of furniture polish. And since it’s a secret blend of some 130 different herbs, roots and leaves, the aroma of Chartreuse is extremely complex, although the most powerful scent poking through all that complexity is certainly fennel/anise. It’s that yummy licorice smell that lures many, like me, to their first sips of this powerful elixir.
There are three varieties of Chartreuse. Yellow Chartreuse, first distilled in 1838, is 40 percent alcohol, the “mildest” of all Chartreuse. I don’t want to say that yellow Chartreuse is for yellowbellies, but the green Chartreuse is the traditional standard and weighs in at 55 percent alcohol. It’s not for the timid, and was a favorite beverage of the late, great Dr. Hunter S. Thompson. A small portion of Chartreuse is set aside for additional aging in oak casks… designated VEP: Viellissement Exceptionnellement Prolongé. Thankfully, Chartreuse can benefit from aging.
…Also, maybe not too surprising is that Chartreuse, made from a carefully guarded centuries-old secret recipe that only three monks know, is thought by many to contain wormwood, the active ingredient in absinthe. This may explain the somewhat narcotic effect that Chartreuse can produce. It’s a liqueur to be sipped in moderation. Even a little bit goes a long way. You might see little green men.
I don’t know if Chartreuse holds the answer to world peace. But I do know that, according to the monks of the Carthusian Order in France, ‘The search for God is universal, the search for peace is universal, and the desire for worldwide brotherhood is universal.’ It would be nice to think that a splash or two of Chartreuse might help get us there.”
Grade: 'Little Green Men'
Score: 90 Points
Author: F. Paul Pacult
Date: Tuesday, February 13, 2007
“The nosing passes pick up smells of aniseed, cardamom, licorice, hay, white pepper, floral/viny scents along with coriander, sage, and thyme. The palate entry is sweet, floral, peppery, and viny; the midpalate features fennel, rosemary, allspice, and bark. Ends up herbal sweet.”
Grade: Buying Guide
The Post Star
Author: Amanda Bensen
Date: Thursday, November 30, 2006
“Herbal liqueur puts the spring in this aromatic cocktail. Mix 1 ounce each of brandy and orange juice with a quarter-ounce of an herbal liqueur like yellow Chartreuse (a colorful, mild elixir developed by French monks), Benedictine (a sweet, fruity cognac also born in a French monastery), or Jagermeister (which is German, but the legend of its creation includes—surprise!—a monk). Shake with ice and serve chilled.”
Grade: Celebrate Spring With Cocktails
Author: Nicole Song
Date: Wednesday, November 29, 2006
Widow's Kiss and the Vessel 75
The place: Vessel, 1312 Fifth Ave. Seattle, 206-652-5222
The quote: “It's [the Widow's Kiss] just so great in its complexity. There's so much going on between the Benedictine and Chartreuse and bitters. Every time you take a sip you get something else out of it.”
–Jamie Boudreau, bar manager
The scene: If you're like me, it's easy to get swept away by the pretty details at downtown's Vessel. An acid-yellow staircase! Soda siphons on the bar! A Noguchi coffee table! Housed in a former shoe store with dramatically tall windows, the new bar is nestled among some serious luxury retail—St. John, Louis Vuitton—so of course it needs to keep up appearances. But all that surface stuff wouldn't matter so much if Vessel didn't back it up at the bar.
And Vessel makes a convincing case for being one of the city's top spots for cocktails. It's kind of hard to argue with a bar that lists provenance for each drink. Watch a bartender flame freshly grated cinnamon in your crystal cocktail glass, explain giant ice cubes to a fellow cocktail enthusiast and top your drink with maple-syrup foam.
The brains behind the menu, mixologist Jamie Boudreau, pushes palettes with period cocktails from the 1800s up until the 1940s, an era he considers a cocktail Renaissance. The menu always will have at least one cocktail topped with his specialty—and secret—foam. I was torn between historical and new, so I tried them all. Not really, but here are two of my favorites.
Widow's Kiss: This 1895 cocktail mixes herbal components like Yellow Chartreuse and Benedictine with apple-kissed brandy and Angostura bitters. It's the kind of cocktail that reveals itself with each sip, so be patient, let the elements play out and savor it.
Vessel 75: The bar's signature cocktail is reason enough to go. Boudreau calls it a "twisted version of the Sazerac with foam." I call it delicious. The foam adds a light sweetness to the bourbon-based cocktail and orange zest tops off the drink with a citrus note.”
2 ounces Calvados
½ ounce Benedictine
½ ounce Yellow Chartreuse
Two dashes Angostura bitters
Dash fresh lemon juice
Combine ingredients into pint glass with ice, shake. Strain twice into a cocktail glass.
3 ounces Woodford Reserve Bourbon
3 dashes Peychaud's bitters
1 bar-spoon simple syrup
Maple syrup foam (secret recipe)
Combine ingredients in pint glass filled with ice, stir until chilled, then strain into an old-fashioned glass. Top with orange zest and maple syrup foam—if you can wrestle the secret from Jamie Boudreau. We couldn't.
Author: F. Paul Pacult
Date: Wednesday, October 4, 2006
"The yellow/green color is different from the all-gold V.E.P. version but lovely all the same; ideal clarity. The first nosing passes pick up loads of botanical treasures, most prominently, seeds (aniseed, cardamom), licorice, hay, and white pepper; aeration time and swirling help floral/viny scents to emerge along with coriander, sage and thyme. The palate entry is sweet, floral, peppery, and viny; the midpalate profile features fennel, rosemary, allspice, and bark. Ends up regally and herbal sweet… Got it right eight years ago."
Grade: Highly Recommended-Four Stars
City Magazine (New York)
Author: Pameladevi Govinda
Date: Monday, December 12, 2005
"With a national cuisine of butter, cream, and cheese, it's not surprising that France has an herbal digestif or two. Formulated by Carthusian monks in the French Alps five hundred years ago, the syrupy green or yellow libation is made from more than 100 herbs, spices, and fruits and is served very cold, often over ice. The original green has a strong pine palate, while the yellow is more floral and fruit-driven."
- Pameladevi Govinda
Grade: 'The Bitter End'
Date: Thursday, August 29, 2002
Superb- Highly Recommended
According to Spirit Journal's 1991-2002 summary of USA and international liqueurs
Grade: FOUR STARS
Score: 95 Points
Date: Friday, October 20, 2000
Sunshine-yellow color with vivid green highlights. A delicate nose on the first whiff; the middle passes offer lovely sweet grass, spice and the botanical richness that Chartreuse is famous for. On palate,the entry is engagingly sweet, even mellow, as the herbal opulence blankets the tongue; the midpalate taste ranges from spicy to moderately intense in a foresty, woodsy manner; it's delicious, comforting, and regal in the mouth. The aftertaste is long, more sweet than spirity, more spicy than herbal. Gloriously lush. 90-95 points.
Grade: SUPERB/Highly Recommended
Date: Friday, October 20, 2000
Floral violet aromas, with hints of sweet lemon and intense spices; bitter leaf and licorice finish, with a softening, sweet character.
Grade: Annual Buying Guide 2001