How To Drink Absinthe: 5 Ways To Enjoy Green Fairy To The Fullest

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Three glasses of absinthe with absinthe spoon and sugar cubes

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Do you like absinthe but you’re not sure how to drink it well? We can help you with that!

Absinthe is a drink that has been enjoyed for over 200 years. How you drink absinthe can make it more or less enjoyable, so here are some tips on how to consume the green fairy to the fullest!

1. Traditional French Drip Method

An absinthe glass with an absinthe fountain

Because French absinthe is both potent and bitter, it is usually diluted and sweetened before drinking. 

This procedure is referred to as a "ritual" since it is intended to be performed slowly and methodically. It enables the drinker to enjoy the complete experience, including the visual change, rather than simply tasting the liquor.

If you don't have absinthe glasses and spoons available, you can use any short-stemmed glass and a large fork. It's simple and not as fancy, but it will do the trick.

What You'll Need

Directions

  1. Pour 1 oz. (30 ml) of absinthe into an absinthe glass.
  2. Place a slotted absinthe spoon on the rim of the glass.
  3. Place the sugar on the absinthe spoon.
  4. Pour a small amount of ice-cold, distilled water slowly onto the sugar cube to soak it. Wait for a few minutes until the sugar cube starts to dissolve.

    A dissolving sugar cube on top of an absinthe spoon

    5. Pour the remaining water over the sugar to completely dilute the absinthe and for the sugar to completely dissolve. The louche will whirl within the drink as the water strikes the liquor, producing a visual experience and releasing the herbal scent of the absinthe.

    6. Allow the louche to settle before stirring in any residual undissolved sugar with the spoon.

      Here’s a tutorial on how to do the traditional French Drip method:

      2. Contemporary Czech Flaming Method

      Czech method of serving absinthe

      This Czech way of preparing absinth (no 'e') includes setting fire to the sugar cube on the spoon. If you're using a sugar cube, use an Absinthe spoon. However, if you're using a lump of sugar, a regular spoon is the way to go.

      However, like with any flaming beverage, you must take caution. To avoid mishaps, pull back loose clothing or hair, mop up any alcohol spills, and keep a fire extinguisher ready or even just a glass of water close.

      What You'll Need

      Directions

      1. Pour 1 oz. (30 ml) of absinthe into an absinthe glass.
      2. Place the sugar on the absinthe spoon or regular spoon if you're using a lump of sugar.
      3. Dip the sugar into the absinthe or pour a small amount over the sugar until it is saturated.
      Pouring absinthe over the sugar4. Set the sugar on fire for about a minute to allow it caramelize. Be careful not to let the sugar burn.
      Flaming sugar cube on an absinthe spoon
          5. Douse the fire by pouring the ice-cold water over the sugar
          6. Stir in the residual sugar left on the spoon. Add some ice if necessary.

        Here’s how the Contemporary Czech Flaming Method is done:

        3. Glass in a Glass Method

        Glass In A Glass Method

        Glass In A Glass Method - Image by wikihow.com

        This method of serving absinthe is basically just diluting it with cold water. However, the technique of diluting is unusual and serves as a visual presentation in and of itself.

        What You'll Need

        Directions

        1. Place the shot glass inside the larger wide-rimmed glass.
        2. Fill the shot glass with the absinthe.
        3. Pour the cold water into the shot glass, purposefully overflowing the contents into the larger glass.
        4. After all the cold water is poured, the large glass will contain the absinthe and water mixture, while the shot glass will only contain water.
        5. Remove the shot glass with water inside.

        Here’s how to learn the Glass in a Glass Method of preparing absinthe:

        4. Backdraft Method

        Flaming absinthe shot

        It should be considered that if done incorrectly, this procedure can be hazardous. You're literally playing with fire by setting the absinthe on fire and then pressing your palm over the shot glass to quench the flame. 

        Do not attempt if you are unclear about the instructions or feel uneasy about following them. Know that this procedure entails drinking an absinthe shot straight, without dilution. Because absinthe can be a potent alcoholic beverage, this method is not suggested for light drinkers.

        What You'll Need

        Directions

        1. Fill about ¾ of the shot glass with absinthe. Ensure that the absinthe does not entirely fill the shot glass. Also, make sure your palm easily fits over the entire rim of the shot glass.
        2. Set the absinthe on fire with a match or lighter. Due to the alcohol level of absinthe, the flame will take quickly and burn easily. It is important not to let the absinthe burn for too long to prevent accidents.
        3. Raise the shot glass up to your nose, gradually breaking the suction, and inhale the alcohol vapor generated by the flame. Instead of removing your hand entirely at once, gently remove only a section of your palm from the shot glass.
        4. Sip or down the absinthe shot. You can savor it slowly at your own pace or drink it all at once.

        Watch this video tutorial on how to do the Backdraft method:

        5. In Cocktails

        Absinthe vodka martini

        It's an intelligent option to accustom your mouth first to the taste of a strong, unique flavor like absinthe when you're new to it. 

        Absinthe cocktails are an excellent start to introduce you to the liquor since they usually utilize a tiny portion and allow the other ingredients in the drink to come to the forefront.

        It lets the drinker have a minimal amount of absinthe to taste and be familiarized with its overall unusual flavor.

        Here’s a video showing how absinthe can be prepared by making cocktails:

        Conclusion

        If you’re looking to try absinthe for the first time or just want some more information on how it should be consumed, we hope these tips will help you get all of the enjoyment possible out of your next drink! 

        Have any of them helped you before? Let us know in the comments below.


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