Barnaby Conrad's book (which is full of factual errors ...) [Note 1 -- M] lists... six herbs in the recipe for Pernod Fils: Grand wormwood, green anise, melissa (lemon balm), fennel, ... petite wormwood and hyssop in the coloring step....These six herbs, then, and the wine base, constitute the ingredients of most legitimate absinthes according to your source.
If you wish to argue seriously from sources, please don't filter them rhetorically but take them entire (as good handlers of factual data do). Mention that Conrad, also, earlier in his book, attributes ingredients to early absinthe maker Dr. Ordinaire including dittany, sweet flag, and/or coriander, veronica, camomile, parsley, "and even spinach." And later in the book, reports an 1889 medical study of ingredients used in absinthes: hyssop, wormwood [sic], fennel, anise, angelica, oregano, Melissa, and mint. Baggott 1997 (cited earlier today) quotes from Simon and Schulter's Guide to Herbs and Spices
an Henri-Louis Pernod recipe with "aniseed, fennel, hyssop, and lemonbalm along with lesser amounts of angelica, star anise, dittany, juniper, nutmeg, and veronica" and that other makers sometimes included "nutmeg and calamus."
All that informed my December-29 point: absinthe makers mixed herbs to taste,
drawing sometimes from a wide palette. (If anyone took this to assert that mint, star anise etc. were always included, I apologize: that wasn't my intent.)
Compare this list of ingredients to the list of those found in St. George: Star anise, mint, wormwood (no specific type listed) [Note 2 --M], lemon balm, hyssop, meadowsweet, basil, fennel, tarragon, and stinging nettles, with brandy as the base spirit. / This dissimilarity in the herb bill is, I think, the reason why many people, including FG... find the St. George to taste like another drink entirely.
I don't dispute your opinion about that (or anyone's tasting notes -- the more the better!). For what it's worth, in my anecdotal contact with tasting appraisals, St.-George vs. widely available modern absinthes (in broad food-drink fora and in person), many people, like FG above, enjoyed the St.-George, whether or not it conforms to a current standard absinthe profile. My specific point, about its ingredients
being unexotic in full historical context, stands. Note 1: As with ingredient details, such offhand appraisal would gain weight were it less selective and rhetorical, mentioning also the vast accurate and valuable content present in Conrad's book.
Note 2: Not to belabor it, but: Dozens of different plants have common names containing "wormwood," an ancient folk term. Many in genus Artemisia, including so-called petit or Roman wormwood, A. pontica, also called green ginger. Some "wormwoods" are even outside the large parent family Asteraceae (formerly Compositae). I find "Roman wormwood" applied informally to some far-removed species, and you can too if you read up on it. Yet, overwhelmingly among respected modern sources in English, "wormwood" is understood clearly to mean Artemisia absinthium. Upthread I mentioned 16 examples of standard modern references on food, drinks, chemistry, pharmacy, language, and absinthe itself, that acknowledge this convention. Knowing most of those, and many other mentions of "wormwood," before the numbers of absinthe hobbyists swelled hugely a few years ago, I'm surprised to see some of them raise an issue now, as if "wormwood" were ambiguous in general writing, which it is not, and I urge wider reading, to anyone who has not yet picked that up. It's true that in some special absinthe-discussion contexts, multiple wormwoods can cause confusion and there the language is critical, and universally clarified via the Latin names.