Absinthe never was as popular in the United States as it had been in Europe, but Absinthe USA was popular within the French portion of the city New Orleans which even had specialized Absinthe bars servicing the Green Fairy.
Absinthe is a liquor which was first created as being an elixir or tonic by a doctor in Switzerland throughout the late eighteenth century. It was made from herbs such as grande wormwood, or artemisia absinthium, fennel and aniseed. Absinthe is traditionally green in color, besides the Swiss La Bleue clear types, hence absinthesoldinusa the nickname “The Green Fairy” or, in French, “La Fee Verte”. It is actually dished up in a unique Absinthe glass using a sugar cube resting on a unique slotted spoon. Iced water is poured over the sugar to dilute the Absinthe.
Drinkers of Absinthe claim that the drink gives them a strange “clear headed” drunkenness which might be due to its curious recipe of herbs, many of which are sedatives and a few that happen to be stimulants. The essential oils of these herbs cause Absinthe to louche, or go cloudy, when water is included. The oils are soluble in alcohol but not in water. Absinthe is a very strong spirit, approximately about 75% alcohol by volume, that’s about twice the potency of whisky or vodka.
Absinthe USA and also the Absinthe Ban
Absinthe was famously banned in many countries during the 1900s and Absinthe USA was prohibited in 1912. The French prohibition movement professed that the thujone in Absinthe (the chemical in wormwood) was psychoactive and triggered psychedelic effects. Absinthe has also been connected to the loose morals of the Moulin Rouge and Montmartre featuring its courtesans, artists and writers, and, when an Absinthe drinker murdered his family, it had been just the excuse the prohibition movement wanted to get the French government to ban Absinthe. A lot of countries, such as the United States followed suit.
Absinthe and drinks that contains any plants from the artemisia family were banned in the USA plus it became illegal to get or sell Absinthe. Americans were made to buy bootleg Absinthe, make their own personal, buy Absinthe substitutes, just like Pastis, or go to countries like the Czech Republic where Absinthe remained legal as well as on sale in Absinthe bars.
Ted Breaux and Absinthe USA
Ted Breaux, from New Orleans, is surely an Absinthe distiller in France. His Jade collection of Absinthes has won several awards.
It was always his dream to be able to sell his Absinthe in his native country but the laws outlawed him in completing this task. Breaux had labored hard at re-creating Absinthe from pre-ban recipes and had actually been in a position to analyze some classic bottles of Absinthe. As he analyzed the vintage Absinthe, he discovered that it actually only comprised minute quantities of thujone – contrary to the belief of the US government.
Breaux and his lawyer buddy, Gared Gurfein, were able to meet with the US Alcohol, Tobacco, Tax and Trade Bureau and let them know about “Lucid”, an Absinthe that Breaux had created specifically for the American market which only includes trace levels of thujone. In 2007 Lucid went on sale in the US and subsequently a couple of other brands have also been allowed to go on sale in the USA. These Absinthes are available online or in bars.
It is great news that Americans can taste real vintage, and legal, Absinthe in their home country the very first time since 1912 – Absinthe USA!