Absinthe, also referred to as the Green Fairy, is a herbal alcoholic beverage with an anise flavor. It was the drink of La Belle Epoque time history and of the Bohemian culture of Paris, particularly Montmartre. Absinthe fans – Van Gogh, Pablo Picasso, Oscar Wilde and Ernest Hemingway reported that the drink was accountable for their genius and that it gave them ideas – the Green Fairy was their muse. But, what is in Absinthe?
What is in Absinthe?
Henri-Louis Pernod’s Absinthe with the early nineteenth century was created utilizing a wine based alcohol that has been distilled with natural herbs. It is stated that his Absinthe recipe was made using the plant common wormwood (Artemisia Absinthium) and other herbs including Florence fennel, green aniseed, hyssop, lemon balm, dittany, star anise, angelica, veronica, nutmeg as well as juniper. Some of these herbs were utilized at the beginning of the procedure and others were used at the end to offer the Absinthe its classic green or verte color.
Wormwood offered Absinthe its name (from Absinthium) as well as its somewhat bitter taste. Roman or petite wormwood (artemisia pontica) is additionally sometimes employed in Absinthe production.
Wormwood contains a substance called thujone. Thujones are monoterpenes and ketones which are present in several other plants too – sage, cypress and tansy. Thujones act about the GABA receptors in the brain and may result in convulsions and muscle spasms when consumed in big amounts. They can even be toxic to organs including the liver and brain. Thujone was believed to be comparable to THC in the drug cannabis creating psychedelic effects like hallucinations but research has shown this to generally be false.
Wormwood, or thujone, was answerable for the banning of Absinthe in early 1900s. The medical career of the time claimed that drinking Absinthe resulted in Absinthe addiction, Absinthism whose signs or symptoms were:-
– Hyper excitability
– Decline of the intellect
– Brain damage
These claims have now been proved false and appear to be just part of the mass hysteria promoted by the prohibition movement of that time. Absinthe, even pre ban Absinthe, only contains very tiny levels of thujone and it would be impossible to take in enough thujone to get harmful – you would die of alcohol poisoning first! There is much more thujone in sage and no one hallucinates after eating a casserole flavored with sage!
All good Absinthe is made up of wormwood and other essential oils. These oils enable the Absinthe to louche when water is included Absinthe preparation and present it its wonderful anise flavor. Make sure that you purchase a quality Absinthe or make your own Absinthe using a top-quality essence from AbsintheKit.com. See AbsintheKit.com for details and help regarding Absinthe products.
Absinthe also contains alcohol and contains an extremely high alcohol by volume, approximately 75% ABV. Care should be taken when drinking Absinthe, not because it will make you hallucinate but because it’s so easy to get drunk on Absinthe specifically if you are mixing it with other alcohol in cocktails.
I hope that this data has answered the question “What is in Absinthe?”. Enjoy observing the Green Fairy!