Many people do not know how to pour Absinthe properly and no, it’s not quite as simple as removing the lid, pouring it into a glass and drinking it! Absinthe should be served diluted with iced water and sweetened slightly with sugar. This method is called “The Ritual” or “La Louche” and is the way that Absinthe was prepared in its heyday in the 19th century and early 20th century.
The Ritual isn’t so much a recipe as a method to follow. Here are instructions on how to pour the perfect Green Fairy every time:-
You will need:-
– Absinthe – Use a quality Absinthe which contains wormwood. There are many fake Absinthes around without any thujone and therefore no wormwood.
– An Absinthe glass – This makes measuring the Absinthe really easy because you fill the bulge at the bottom or go up to the mark, depending on what style glass you have.
– A slotted Absinthe spoon (cuillere)
– Iced water
– A cube of white sugar
To make your Absinthe drink you need to pour a shot of Absinthe into the glass and rest the spoon on the rim of the glass.
Place the cube of sugar on the spoon and slowly drip the water over the sugar to make it dissolve into the Absinthe. Top up the Absinthe to taste, usually a ratio of between 3:1 and 5:1 water to Absinthe.
If you use a steady hand and drip the water slowly, you will be able to watch the Absinthe louche as it turns from a transparent bright green to an opalescent, pale, milky green. This is fascinating to watch.
Some Absinthe drinkers buy a special Absinthe fountain which you fill with water and ice cubes and then turn a tap to control the dripping of the water into the Absinthe – great if you are heavy handed. A fountain also allows you to make two drinks at the same time because many fountains have two taps.
Replicas of antique Absinthe spoons and glasses can be ordered online from AbsintheKit.com. The company also sell Absinthe essences on their webshop. You mix an essence with vodka or everclear to make your very own real wormwood Absinthe.
The Czech or Bohemian method differs slightly from the Ritual and is not a traditional method of preparing Absinthe. To make Absinthe this way you need to:-
– Pour a shot of Absinthe into a glass and then dip the cube of sugar into the alcohol.
– Place the cube of sugar onto the Absinthe spoon.
– Using a match or lighter, set the sugar alight.
– Watch the sugar caramelize and melt through the slots of the spoon and into the Absinthe.
– Carefully pour iced water into the Absinthe to dilute.
– Stir and enjoy.
Absinthe can also be mixed with other alcohol in cocktails. Look online for Absinthe cocktail recipes. Ernest Hemingway drank “Death in the Afternoon” – Absinthe mixed with champagne!
There you are, how to pour Absinthe using the Ritual and the more modern Bohemian method. Try them out and have fun with Absinthe.