Two names describe Absinthe “Green Fairy” or “La Fee Verte” Absinthe.

The Green Fairy Absinthe is an alcoholic beverage that rivals wine in its appeal and popularity. Developed as tonic to aid digetsion in the 18th century it has become the most contorversial and famous drinks of all times.

Absinthe is strong as it has between 45 to 75% alcohol by volume it is also ansie flavored. The name “Green Fairy” in English or “La Fee Verte” in french is because of its emerald green color. Herbs are used to make this distilled liquor. The most important herbs are wormwood or Artemisia Absinthium, Fennel and green aniseed. The first person to commercially distill Absinthe was Henri-Louis Pernod of the Pernod Absinthe recipe fame, he used herbs such as hyssop, star anise, nutmeg, veronica, dittany, juniper and lemon balm to prepare the recipe. Some manufacturers also used other herbs like calamus along with wormwood and nutmeg all these were thought to be psychoactive. Essential oils in the herbs that are the ingredients of Absinthe are not water soluble and hence you see the louche effect when water is poured over the sugar on the Absinthe spoon. The oils are not water soluble and so cause the Absinthe to cloud or louche.

The Green Fairy Absinthe

Absinthe or the Green Fairy and the Creative World

Absinthe is responsible for the great works of the artists and writers associated with Bohemian culture and Montmartre area of Paris. Several greats like Vincent Van Gough, Pablo Picasso, Paul Gauguin, Charles Baudelaire, Edgar Degas, Ernest Hemingway and Oscar Wilde loved their Absinthe. Writers and Artists were convinced that their genius and inspiration came from Absinthe. Great Painters like Van Gogh and Pabalo Picasso even featured Absinthe and Absinthe drinkers in their paintings.

To ban Absinthe prohibition campaigners needed an excuse and they found it in Absinthe’s association with Bohemian Sect, Moulin Rouge and old Montmartre. By 1915 prohibition campaigners had linked Absinthe to marital problems, murders, family problems this resulted in the sale of Absinthe being made illegal and it was finally banned. Almost all countries banned it with the exception of the Czech Republic, Portugal, Spain and the UK where it enjoyed legal status.

Drinking the Green Fairy caused psychedelic effects and thujone, a chemical present in wormwood was blamed for it. THC in cannabis was likened to Thujone. Thujone, however is present in very minute quantity as Absinthe mainly contains ethanol and alcohol. Thujone in Absinthe is not dangerous and research has proven that the drink is as safe as any strong liquor, the danger if any is due to the high alcohol content. The subject has had many articles written on it. For pleasure drink it in moderation as it is twice as strong as whisky and vodka.

Prohibition had little effect on the Czech Republic which had Absinthe bars that were decorated with vintage Absinthe posters and served Absinthe in large classic Absinthe glasses, people enjoyed buying and drinking absinthe here. Thankfully now in 2008, absinthe is legal in most countries. However, the European Union still controlls the thujone levels and the US only allows absinthe with trace amounts of thujone to be sold or bought.

Visit AbsintheKit to buy absinthe bottle or absinthe essence online.com) to make your own Absinthe or the Green Fairy to bottle at home. Real Absinthe and Absinthe essences contain the vital ingredient wormwood but some new Absinthes, produced for the US market, do not contain thujone.

Green Fairy Absinthe cocktails can use this spirit to prepare a fantastic drink – just mix this delicious spirit with champagne!

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