Mazarine Cordial

Saturday 2nd December 2006 - 12:33:49 PM
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img_1008.jpgA friend of ours found this bottle while cleaning out a house in Indiana. He had no idea what it was, but brought it home. We opened this bottle and sampled one of the most incredible flavors ever. A search of the internet has shown nothing. We have no idea if it is still made or imported. I assume not imported for sure. I had tasted nothing so wonderful in my life until we opened up a vintage bottle of Okolehao recently. That flavor was very close. We finished off this bottle and hated to see it empty.

Calling Virani! Do you know anything about this amazing cordial made in Paris? Does anyone out there?

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Update 7-21-2012: After searching for these last 6 years, and many dead ends, I just got another bottle of this magical elixir. It is far better than I recalled, and I must say that comparing it to okolehao is not accurate. It is far superior. Like nothing else. It has notes of curry, cinnamon, honey, licurice and an almost menthol, minty finish that is amazing.

UPDATE 8-25-16: THIS FRENCH SITE digs deep into Mazarine which is a fake version of Benedictine it seems. I would tend to agree as the closet I have come to re-creating it is to take 1 part Benedictine and 1 part B&B with 1/2 part Fernet.

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16 Comments »

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  1. virani

    Cusenier is a french brand that sell (I think they belong to Pernod-ricard now) anise liqueur and other aperitif.
    The Mazarine doesn’t exist anymore, that’s an excellent find, I never tasted it.

    I know Cusenier used to make the finest Absinthe. Does it taste like it ?
    Here is an ad for a bottle of absinthe of that brand :
    http://www.heureverte.com/images/stories/affiches/affiche-cusenier.jpg

    Comment left on December 3, 2006 @ 1:44 pm

  2. Mark Steel

    “Mazarine, an anise liquer, was originally made from a 1637 recipe by monks of the Argentine Abbey of Montbenoit.”

    Found quite a few references to it, including a Mazarine l’Orange and Mazarine Blue which are Anise & Cointreau and Anise & Curacao, respectively.

    Comment left on December 3, 2006 @ 3:42 pm

  3. Swanky

    Tasted nothing like Absinthe, or Anise. It has a very warm, spicy, woody taste. Not a liquorice taste at all.

    Comment left on December 3, 2006 @ 7:26 pm

  4. Terry Hebert

    I have in front of me a 4/5 quart bottle Mazarine cordial with the same placard as above, except the 4/5 and Buenos Aires, not Paris.
    Beneath the primary placard a string placard goes up to the top and covered below the lip with ..A. TAYLOR & C0. label as the U.S.A. agent. The string placard has a cross with two cross arms, the lower arm broader than the upper arm. Both ends of each cross arm and the top of the cross have what appears like the outer portion of the three rings of the Trinity symbol. Is this the cross of the Abbey of Montbenoit??

    To the side of the vertical string label is a rouge Grande Distillrie round label with a crown above a shield or coat of arms in the middle `and E. CUSENIER Flls Aine & Cie
    below.
    The bottle is triangular base with “Mazarine” and the cross below on the two sides opposite the placard third side. The bottom three edges has the three words CUSENIER, BUENOS AIRES, ARGENTINE, with the number3026 below cusenier.
    The bottle was still sealed U.S. revenue label over the shriveled cork. I had no idea how old or irreplaceable the cordial was when I tore open the label, lifted the shriveled cork smelling the fine fragrance and peered inside. I asked my wife and her sisters if I may keep it as we were sorting out the house hold goods of the last century of their aunts and grandparents home. They agreed to my request and I brought it home where I have enjoyed it to nearly the end.
    Only a very few friends have agreed to the quality and uniqueness I attribute to the cordial. The younger generation when offered a taste react like I gave them poison. Oh what is this world coming to!!

    Should we all come together and request the abbey to produce the cordial again??

    Comment left on February 10, 2007 @ 12:26 am

  5. Swanky

    The next best thing to this is the taste of Hawaiian okolehau. Oke is much easier to get, though not easy. I am crossing my fingers that oke will soon be available to purchase again and I can savor that taste any night I want. This Mazarine is a wonderful memory. I would love to have it again.

    Comment left on February 12, 2007 @ 9:50 am

  6. Slamman007

    My recently deceased grandfather purchased, a long time ago, a case of the Mazarine Cordial with BUENOS AIRES on the bottom. I have 10 unopened bottles and I am looking to find any information on their value. Can anyone offer any assistance?

    Comment left on June 17, 2007 @ 5:11 pm

  7. Wendy from Texas

    Hi I too have a bottle Mazarine Cordial with BUENOS AIRES on the bottom. I would like to find out the value and possibly sell it. I have no idea where to start. If anyone has any contact information of persons interested please let me know.
    Unfortunately most auction sites do not allow the sale of alcahol.

    Comment left on July 8, 2009 @ 5:20 pm

  8. Dave

    I collect Liqueurs and would be interested in purchasing a bottle of Mazarine.

    Comment left on October 8, 2009 @ 9:43 am

  9. Jean-Pascal from France

    South of France

    Hi everybody,

    I was doing a web research on ” Mazarine ” when I discovered your discussion. I bought this morning in a secondhand trade two very old triangular bottles with twice the word ” Mazarine ” and two crosses with three branches (in France, it’s the Lorraine country cross : I’m a Lorrain guy, that’s why I bought those bottles… South is far from north-east of France that sometimes deeply miss me – but Lorrain people are so strong that they never cry. Once a year, that’s all).

    I can give you now a few informations about that french “religious” alcohol.

    First of all, Mazarine was a liquor made by the religious people of the Montbenoit abbey. Montbenoit is one part of Franche-Comté country in North East of France. It’s a famous country for its yellow wine, its”saucisse de morteau”, its cheese called Comté and… and for another magic and dangerous alcohol : “L’absinthe, la Fée Verte” ( in the city of Pontarlier not far from Montbenoit).

    Those Religious men invented that special drink, called “élixir Mazarine” because it had a good effect on health, during the year 1637 (France was living the Ten Years War). There was “Anis” herb in its making.

    And now, the story becomes very interesting.

    Cusenier, French Liquors specialist, made a deal with the Abbey in the beginning of 20th century. The familial firm registered the “Mazarine” mark (with the Lorraine Cross) in 1903. Have a look here ( http://www.legilux.public.lu/leg/a/annexes/1903/annexe_02/annexe_02.pdf ) and do a research using the “mazarine” keyword : you’ll find the registration ( number 1144) for… Luxembourg country and it will answer at many questions I’ve seen in the blog. First of all, You’ll recognize the label of your bottle. And you’ll find some explanations about the liquor and the abbey. Sorry, the document is in french that is the official language of Luxembourg Country (just find a translator like Reverso. That’s what I’m doing to give you the best understanding).

    Let’s talk now about the legend :

    According to an old book dating of about one century ( “La Nature” – 2nd of June 1894), the invention of the extract of absinthe would be due to a doctor witch name was “Usually” (Yes, “Ordinaire” in French). According to that same legend, the product would have been discovered by the monks of the abbey of Montbenoit and it would be possible very well whether it is of these last ones that Dr Ordinaire held the secret of the preparation of Absinthe.

    Amazing ! Is Mazarine The ancestor of the absinthe ?

    You know now all what I’ve found this afternoon on the web about the history of Mazarine liquor and of my two bottles which are very differents of yours. I think that mine are 19th century bottles (before Cusenier makes its business deal with the Montbenoit monks).

    To conclude, our biggest poets and French artists of the end of the 19th century abused some absinthe which drove crazy but made them so creative and brilliant. We praised it, we sang it, we painted it, we made it poems; it drove crazy and unchained the passions !

    Thanks Mazarine !

    Bye,

    J.P.

    P.S. : I don’t know how to add, if it is possible, photos on the blog. I would have liked to show you the very old bottles.

    Comment left on February 13, 2010 @ 12:34 pm

  10. Jean-Pascal from France

    Hi,

    I’ve a new information.

    It seems that French Montbenoit Abbey was closed in year 1773 ( 16 years before the French Révolution).

    Who made Mazarine between 1773 and 1903 (Cusenier trademark) ?

    Did the French Monks left France to live in Argentina ? And if so, did they found all the herbs to make Mazarine ?

    How is the Absinthe Legend of 1894 possible if Abbey was closed ? Did the monks stayed in France in another place ?

    Last thing, my bottle is triangular as the bottles of Terry who left a message on this blog three years ago…. but there are only the words “Mazarine” with Lorraine Cross in old letters on two faces. No Cusenier, no number. Strange.

    Here is a link to my photos space on Flickr where you’ll see one of my bottle : http://www.flickr.com/photos/viandox007/sets/72157623320915335/

    I’m gonna search.

    It’s mysterious.

    bye,

    J.P.

    Comment left on February 16, 2010 @ 2:07 am

  11. David cutler

    I recently found that 3 sided mazarine bottle in a 1920s landfil sight. It has mazarine on 2 sides with a double cross below the name on both panels. I will e at the Baltimore bottle show on 3/7/2010 and will have it with me if anyone is interested .

    Comment left on March 1, 2010 @ 7:06 pm

  12. JEAN-PASCAL FROM FRANCE

    Hi,

    This is a message for you, David, about your triangular bottle. It seems to me that the bottle could perharps be the same as mine.

    Is it possible for you to insert somewhere on the web a photo ? Or to send one at that adress : bullox[at]free.fr.

    It could help me because I’m still searching for informations about the age of that bottle.

    Thanks,

    See you (on the web or by mail),

    Jean-Pascal

    Comment left on March 11, 2010 @ 5:30 am

  13. Swanky

    I recant my previous statement about Anise. I just tasted it again for the first time in 6 years, and I have tasted Absinthe since. It does have an Anise flavor and it has a distinctive “menthol” like Absinthe. It is very minor. A lasting freshness in the nose like a vapor rub. We definitely tasted curry and cinnamon flavors and maybe honey.

    We were very glad to get this new bottle in the mail.

    Comment left on July 23, 2012 @ 9:36 am

  14. Marybeth

    I have had an opened 750 ml bottle of Cusenier Maraschino for 37 years. It is straw wrapped and 34cm tall. I was wondering if you knew if it is still any good, how old it really might be and if it perhaps this is the last one of these on the face of the earth. I cannot find any information on this and would live some health. Thank you. PS Love your blog!

    Comment left on April 11, 2013 @ 11:35 am

  15. Chris

    Hello,

    I have recently cleaned out a house in Indianapolis, IN and found a bottle of the Mazarine Cordial as described above from Argentine. It is unopened and I am still wondering what the price tag on this is. Do they still make this same type of alcohol? Not brand name obviously because they don’t exist anymore. But is there a market for an unopened bottle of it? Or if I opened it could anyone point me in a direction to get another sealed bottle of it? Thanks

    Comment left on November 6, 2015 @ 5:21 pm

  16. Paula Piccirillo

    I have an original, unopened bottle of this wonderful elixir that belonged to my grandfather. What is the estimated value?

    Comment left on March 31, 2016 @ 5:23 pm

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