Zoup! vs. Absinthe: A Texas Next-Morning Cage Match of Flavor

Sometimes it takes a spicy bone broth to cure how you’ve ailed yourself

I totally blame Violet Crown Distillery for this post.

The winner and still champion.

Because I wasn’t about to mention the Zoup! brand again, even though they’ve just released this new Spicy Chicken Bone Broth, because I’d certainly given enough column inches to those fine savory-fluidmongers earlier this summer.

For that matter, hell, I wasn’t planning on mentioning Violet Crown Distillery again so soon, either. But they do make the first absinthe legally produced in the Lone Star State, those Violet Crownies, and I reported on the company just last month, and a couple nights ago I finally got around to … actually sampling that flagship spirit of theirs.

“Sampling,” see, that’s the operative word here.

“Sampling,” right?

Oh boy.

Because I, having thrown caution to the proverbial wind, having gone all devil-may-care cavalier about things in general, thanks to Dem Ol’ Pandemic Blues, I went ahead and sampled my way through three or four glasses too many – why, hello there, Green Fairy – and directly into the most delightful little hangover the next day.

[Note: Violet Crown makes a hella fine absinthe, friend. But: Moderation! Moderation is key!]

And what’s the best cure for a hangover? I wondered this as I shuffled, in mild agony, through my kitchen the next morning. (Okay, so it was a little before 1pm; in some cases, that’s the morning.) And, as if in answer, my eyes were visited by a glorious sight: That bottle of Spicy Chicken Bone Broth I’d gotten from Zoup!, sitting there, waiting, near the fruit bowl on the counter.

They say that Zoup! stuff is so good you can drink it straight from the jar, you know – and they’re not lying. But, still, I rallied my forces and chose to be fully civilized. I rallied my forces – I marshaled my strength – I made what seemed like, at the time, an excruciatingly Herculean effort and I opened that jar of broth and I poured it into a pot and I set it to simmering on the stove.

Then I ransacked the refrigerator for the two chicken breasts that I knew were left over, wrapped lovingly in tin foil, from the weekend’s big dinner. I chopped those already-baked breasts – gently, gently chopping – and tossed them into the bubbling bone broth. I grabbed a handful of baby carrots from the bag in the veggie crisper and added those to the pot. I dared to chop again – the few green onions remaining from last week’s grocery run – and in they went as well.

Half an hour later, I scooped myself up a bowl of what could have been the tastiest elixir vitae ever imagined by history’s most aspirational alchemists. I greedily supped my fill from a vessel brimming with flavor and nutrients and hot, succoring, chickeny love. And my hangover, however slightly, abated. And ahhhhhhh: I felt, again, almost human.

Because those Zoup! broths – as I’ve mentioned – are so good in general. And this new Spicy Chicken Bone Broth is spicy enough, has just enough kick to it, to help banish the absinthian cobwebs from a grizzled old journo’s morning mind. Besides being a fine thing to enjoy any old time, yes.

Just so you know, friend, just so you know.

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