Absinthe’s Revival in Popular Culture
Absinthe is back, offering those looking for something with more class a tasteful alternative or interested in its long history an exciting beverage to experience. Enjoyed either traditionally (the sugar cube dripped over an absinthe spoon before being set ablaze), or by simply pouring over ice and adding drops of water gradually until louche (cloudy) effects appear, absinthe has something for everyone – do your research if planning on trying it!
One of the best places to experience absinthe is at an absinthe-centric bar like Maison Premiere in Brooklyn, offering 10 brands including pre-ban style Pernod and Jade Nouvelle Orleans absinthes as well as serving unique cocktails like an anise twist Martini or highball made with absinthe and pineapple soda.
Absinthe’s revival can be attributed to two factors. First, it has never been banned officially in the US although many European countries did ban it at one time (see our article on absinthe bans). Second, BBH Spirits recognized there were no UK laws prohibiting its sale so began selling Hill’s Absinthe (which technically isn’t absinthe).
Absinthe is made from Artemisia absinthium wormwood and has anywhere between 60%-75% alcohol by volume, originally made using either copper or zinc stills and then filtered through either an indigo plant filter. It typically appears clear or very green in appearance; over time this may fade to brown over time and should be stored in cool, dark places to retain its color and flavor. Absinthe can be an intensely bitter experience for some but many find it delicious; in some cases even leading them to hallucinations!