Absinthe had been the favorite drink of several popular artists and writers.
Absinthe is a strong alcoholic beveragedistilled at high proof but generally served diluted with iced water or in cocktails. The preparation of Absinthe liquor is done from a wine alcohol base and is flavored with herbs and essential oils together with wormwood, aniseed and fennel. Hyssop, lemon balm, star anise, angelica, juniper, nutmeg, dittany, calamus root and mint are the other herbal ingredients used in the manufacture of Absinthe.
Information about Absinthe History
Absinthe has a very long and interesting history. Wormwood has been used in medicine since ancient times. According to the legend Absinthe was created by a French doctor, Dr Pierre Ordinaire in the late 18th century, in the Swiss town of Couvet. Ordinaire used it on his patients, as an elixir, with miraculous results.
By the turn of the 19th century, Henri-Louis Pernod was using the Absinthe recipe to distill Absinthe in Couvet and then the French town of Pontarlier, under the name of Pernod Fils. Absinthe was produced upto 30,000 liters each day by the Pernod company!
Not only in France but also in several other nations Absinthe was a well known drink. Absinthe’s popularity affected wine producers as it overtook wine as the favorite drink of the French people. Contemporary there were concerns about health and the effects of Absinthe. The liquor was linked to the Bohemian culture of Montmartre with its loose morals and artists and writers. The psychedelic effects, convulsions, insanity, brain damage and death was believed to be the causes from thujone.
People believed that Absinthe was responsible for Van Gogh’s insanity and his suicide, for a man killing his family and for the rising rate of alcohol abuse in France. The USA and France restricted Absinthe in the year 1912 and 1915 respectively. Other countries also restricted Absinthe.
During the ban, people either drank Absinthe substitutes, such as Pernod Pastis, or bought bootleg Absinthe. Many people were convinced that the claims made about Absinthe were untrue and studies and research took place.
Studies showed that Absinthe was no more dangerous than consuming other strong alcoholic beverages, such as whisky and vodka, and that Absinthe contained only very small amounts of thujone – not enough to cause any harmful side effects.
In the late 20th century EU has legalized Absinthe with up to 10mg/kg of thujone and in 2007 USA has legalized certain brands of Absinthe that contained up to 10 ppm of thujone .
France, home of Pernod’s original Absinthestill has a ban on products labeled “Absinthe” and France also strictly regulates drinks containing fenchone, a chemical in fennel which is a key ingredient in Absinthe. One can get Absinthe with up to 5mg per liter of fenchone in France.
One can now get Absinthe from online or from a liquor shop.The website AbsintheKit.com provides all the information related to Absinthe essences. They also sell replica Absinthe glasses and spoonslike a Pontarlier glass and Eiffel Tower spoon.