How To Drink And Enjoy Real Absinthe
History of real Absinthe
Real Absinthe, one of the most mysterious and misunderstood spirits often nicknamed Green Fairy or La Fée Verte due to its emerald green color. Talking of color, some absinthes can be very colorful. While there are colorless Blanche absinthes, there are also many verte absinthes with wormwood in all shades of green that, upon aging, will turn to a yellow, orange or brown color (Feuille morte). A very limited number of pink, red, or rouge absinthes also exist. Let’s also find out how to drink real absinthe.
You may have already learned a lot about absinthe so now let’s have a look at the fascinating Absinthe Ritual. We will give you advice on how to drink Absinthe traditionally and we’ll also explain the reason behind the absinthe ritual. It is often called the traditional, French, or Swiss ritual. Since absinthe was invented in Switzerland, the first real ritual originated there.
How do we Drink It?
First of all, you need to know that strong absinthe is always diluted with water, we don’t drink it straight. It’s too strong, usually between 45 – 70% abv. (90 – 140 proof) and most aromas only develop when iced water is added! Also, we use an absinthe: water ratio of roughly 1:3, meaning one part absinthe, and three parts water.
First you need to add about 3-4cl of absinthe into your glass. Then, you use a carafe or an absinthe fountain to slowly drip the ice-cold water into the absinthe, allowing it to turn cloudy (this color changing process is called louche) and develop aromas. Once you reach a ratio of 1:3, your drink is ready to be enjoyed.
What is the Absinthe Ritual?
As most of you know, the sugar is also a big part of the drinking ritual, no matter which one you choose to use. So, do you need to take sugar with it? And why is absinthe often pictured with a slotted absinthe spoon and sugar? When it was becoming popular during the 19th century, people loved sweet things. Those days nobody was warried about low-carb or any other modern diets, they simply consumed what they loved and enjoyed. Sugar was like a candy, people loved it. Additionally, absinthe is quite a strong spirit and sugar can mask the high alcoholic volume as well as a bitter taste, resulting of the wormwood plant. All in all, people often drank absinthe with lots of sugar, much more than we actually use today!
We suggest to drink it without sugar and experienced absintheurs often skip the sugar. They do it, because they want to enjoy the pure drink without the masquerade of sweetness. There are also some very pleasant absinthe brands, that are easier to drink without sugar. One of them is definitely Absinthe Innocent with lower alcohol contents but still very pronounced taste and 35 mg of psychoactive thujone. If you’re new to this spirit, we strongly suggest you give this brand a try!
You can also say, the lower the alcoholic volume of the specific brand, the more you should try the Absinthes without adding sugar cubes. Additionally, whole range of Absinthe Original uses much less of anise (which gives the absinthe a sweet note), therefore if you don’t have a sweet tongue, it is definitely your choice No# 1!
How can you mix it with?
Absinthe is not only enjoyable with water, it is also great a base for cocktails, the most famous being Death in The Afternoon or Sazerac that was created by a New Orleans pharmacy in the early 19th century to ward off tropical malaise! We have a novel twist on a classic recipe called Long Island Iced Green Tea:
Make up as for a Long Island Iced tea but substitute 1/2 a measure of absinthe for the Tequila. Absinthe cocktail
- 1 measure rum
- 1 measure triple sec
- 1 measure vodka
- 1 measure gin
- 1/2 measure absinthe original
- juice of 1 small lemon
over ice, shake and serve in a tall glass over ice. Add a dash of coke and garnish with a lemon slice.