Absinthe, also referred to as the Green Fairy, is actually a herbal alcoholic beverage with an anise flavor. It was the drink of La Belle Epoque time period of history and of the Bohemian customs of Paris, especially Montmartre. Absinthe fans – Van Gogh, Pablo Picasso, Oscar Wilde as well as Ernest Hemingway reported that the drink was liable for their genius and that it gave them inspiration – the Green Fairy was their muse. But, what is in Absinthe?
What is in Absinthe?
Henri-Louis Pernod’s Absinthe with the early 19th century was developed using a wine based alcohol which was distilled with natural herbs. It is said that his Absinthe recipe was developed using the plant common wormwood (Artemisia Absinthium) and other herbs such as Florence fennel, green aniseed, hyssop, lemon balm, dittany, star anise, angelica, veronica, nutmeg and also juniper. Many of these herbs were utilized at the start of the process and others were utilized towards the end to give the Absinthe its classic green or verte color.
Wormwood offered Absinthe its name (from Absinthium) and its particular slightly bitter taste. Roman or petite wormwood (artemisia pontica) is additionally sometimes used in Absinthe creation.
Wormwood contains a chemical known as thujone. Thujones are monoterpenes and ketones that happen to be present in many other plants too – sage, cypress and tansy. Thujones act within the GABA receptors inside the brain and can cause convulsions as well as muscle spasms when consumed in big amounts. They can also be toxic to organs like the liver and brain. Thujone was thought to be a lot like THC in the drug cannabis causing psychedelic effects such as hallucinations but research has shown this to generally be false.
Wormwood, or thujone, was answerable for the banning of Absinthe during the early 1900s. The medical job of the time believed that drinking Absinthe resulted in Absinthe addiction, Absinthism whose signs and symptoms were:-
– Hyper excitability
– Weakening of the intellect
– Brain injury
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 period. Absinthe, even pre ban Absinthe, only includes very small levels of thujone and it would be impossible to consume enough thujone to become harmful – you will die of alcohol poisoning first! There is far more thujone in sage and no one hallucinates after enjoying a casserole flavored with sage!
All good Absinthe contains wormwood along with other essential oils. These oils enable the Absinthe to louche when water is added in Absinthe preparation and give it its wonderful anise flavor. Make sure that you obtain a quality Absinthe or create your own Absinthe by using a top-quality essence from AbsintheKit.com. See AbsintheKit.com for information and help regarding Absinthe products.
Absinthe also contains alcohol and features an extremely high alcohol by volume, as much as 75% ABV. Care ought to be taken when drinking Absinthe, not mainly because it will make you hallucinate but because it’s so easy to get drunk on Absinthe particularly if you are mixing it with other alcohol in cocktails.
I hope that this information has answered the question “What is in Absinthe?”. Enjoy learning the Green Fairy!