Van Gogh, Pablo Picasso, Oscar Wilde, Ernest Hemingway, Gauguin, Baudelaire, Verlaine, Degas are among the famous artists and writers who enjoyed drinking Absinthe.
Absinthe is a strong alcoholic beveragedistilled at high proof but generally served diluted with iced water or in cocktails. Absinthe liquor is usually produced from a wine alcohol base and is flavored with herbs and essential oils as well as wormwood (Artemisia Absinthium), fennel and aniseed. Absinthe is also prepared from other herbal ingredients like hyssop, lemon balm, star anise, angelica, juniper, nutmeg, dittany, calamus root and mint.
Information about Absinthe History
Absinthe has a very long and interesting history. There had been medicinal use of wormwood 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 a medicine.
During the 19th century, Henri-Louis Pernod was using the Absinthe recipe to distill Absinthe in Couvet and under the name of Pernod Fils in the French town of Pontarlier. The Pernod company used to manufacture upto 30,000 liters of Absinthe each day!
Absinthe was a popular drink in France, in La Belle Epoque, and also many other countries. Absinthe’s popularity affected wine producers as it overtook wine as the favorite drink of the French people. At the same time, there were concerns about health and the effects of Absinthe. The loose morals and artists and writers of the Bohemian culture were linked with the liquor. According to the people’s thought thujone was a psychoactive resulting in psychedelic effects, convulsions, insanity, brain damage and death.
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. Absinthe was banned both in the USA and in France. Buying and selling of Absinthe was also illegalized in other countries.
During the ban, people either drank Absinthe substitutes, such as Pernod Pastis, or bought bootleg Absinthe. Studies and research showed that the claims made about Absinthe were untrue.
Studies showed that effects of Absinthe was same as consuming other strong alcoholic beverages and the thujone content in Absinthe is not harmful for anyone.
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.One can get more information about Absinthe essences on AbsintheKit.com. They also sell replica Absinthe glasses and spoonslike a Pontarlier glass and Eiffel Tower spoon.