NATIONAL ABSINTHE DAY
March 5th is also known as National Absinthe Day. This day is for those who are 21 years or older to celebrate a drink called absinthe.
Often mistaken for a liqueur, it is truly a spirit because it isn’t sweetened. It belongs with the vodkas, gins and whiskeys when categorizing absinthe.
The spirit is made by infusing wormwood, fennel, anise and other herbs into alcohol through distillation. The creation of absinthe is credited to Pierre Ordinaire, a French doctor. He developed and prescribed the elixir in the early 19th century as a cure for many illnesses.
It has a strong licorice flavor to it and has a high alcohol content. It is often served with ice, a sugar cube placed on a slotted spoon over the glass and water poured over the sugar.
Also known as The Green Fairy, The Green Goddess or The Green Lady, the drink was popular with artists and writers. It was rumored to have hallucinogenic effects. Just as it was gaining in popularity, as the century was coming to a close, its reputation took some severe blows.
The Green Lady was blamed for causing madness, seizures and low morality, among other ills of society. One of the final blows was a scandal in 1905 involving a French laborer who had spent the day drinking. His drink of choice was absinthe. He later murdered his children and pregnant wife.
The drink was banned in France and other countries soon followed. In the United States and around the world the ban has since been lifted.
Studies have proven there is nothing hallucinogenic about the drink. Absinthe does have a higher alcohol content than other spirits, so keeping that in mind is important to drink responsibly.
HOW TO OBSERVE
Have some absinthe (Remember always to drink responsibly and never to drink and drive) and use #NationalAbsintheDay to post on social media.
Why March 5th? It’s a nod to Pernod, and the day the approval of their final label for Pernod Fils Absinthe became official in 2013.
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