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Absinthe Green Fairy

If there ever was a item steeped in controversy, it was the well-known emerald drink Absinthe. During the fantastic collective binge era in France (1880-1914), the drink became a symbol of inspiration and courage as pertaining to the artistic lifestyle. Such well-known artists as Van Gogh, Manet and Picasso featured absinthe green fairy in their paintings and fantastic poets such as Rimbaud, Verlaine and Baudelaire made it the subject of literary works.

The shady history of absinthe started in Switzerland during the late 1700′s. a French Dr. Pierre Ordinaire invented a licorice flavored tonic to administer to his patients. Dr. Ordinaire sold the recipe to the Pernod family who went on to make the first absinthe distillery. The drink was such a success that the Pernod family went on to open the most well-known Maison Pernod Fils distillery in France.

The next few decades absinthe became increasingly well loved and not just for it’s medicinal benefits. The Green Fairy slowly evolved from being the beneficial emerald tonic to the seductive green goddess of artistic inspiration, visions and dreams. When the 1860′s arrived absinthe had elevated to such a popularity that the hours between 5:00 and 7:00 became known as “l’heure verte” or the green hour. People would gather at their local hangouts to get a buzz before dinner. Many reckon this is the origins of our modern pleased hour.

Absinthe’s Controversy

At the very height of absinthe’s popularity, it was pegged as a dangerously addictive, psychoactive drug due to it’s thujone content. Thujone is a chemical similar in composition to THC, the active ingredient in Marijuana. Thujone is found in the herbs mugwort, sage and wormwood, grand wormwood being one of the key ingredients in absinthe. By 1915 it was banned in many European countries and the United States, even though there was no evidence that is was no more perilous than normal alcohol.

An Absinthe Resurgence

Due to the popularity of movies such as Moulin Rouge, Interview with a Vampire, and Van Helsing that have feature the emerald drink absinthe, It is making a comeback. Stars such as Johnny Depp, Tommy Lee, Marilyn Manson are adding to it’s popularity by openly discussing a like for the Green Goddess. Also it is a very well loved item in the gothic community due to it’s Renaissance allure.

What does absinthe taste like?

Absinthe is made by distilling alcohol steeped in various herbs, namely grand wormwood, green anise, fennel seeds, veronica, hyssop and a few others. The drink has a taste similar to black licorice due to the anise and fennel and slightly bitter due to the absinthin content. It is green in color because of the chlorophyl content in the herbs.

The ritual of absinthe

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