Thursday, December 27, 2007


The word on the street is that Absinthe doesn’t really cause madness, that it’s a rumor spread by French doctors a century ago. Well, you can’t prove it by us.

As you may have heard, Absinthe has recently been cleared for sale in the United States, and it has set off a frenzy. First there was the madness to get any at all, and then there were articles in the New York Times and the front page of the San Francisco Chronicle, touting the Absinthe that was going to be released by Alameda’s St. George Spirits. Nothing like a little publicity to get things stirred up.

The release date was announced as December 21st and we were named as a retail source for this elixir. This is just what a retail store needs just before Christmas—a whole bunch of people calling up trying to buy something that isn’t for sale yet. We did what we could—we took names and numbers and promised to call people when it got to us. We got only 56 bottles from St. George and they were gone within 24 hours.

We did open one bottle for ourselves, and is a truly fascinating drink. We found that the St. George Spirits Absinthe Vert certainly didn’t need any help from a sugar cube, although water gave it the signature creamy louche and opened up the flavors. The herbs wafted from the glass, with anise and licorice leading (it was reminiscent of Good and Plenty candy, really, and one of our tasters kept wondering out loud, “Why am I thinking of my childhood?”). For all that, we didn’t drink enough to see any green fairies, although we had to be careful with this 120 proof cocktail.

We still have the French Lucid Absinthe in stock, and we’re looking forward to the next batch from St. George, due in February. Hopefully, the world will have calmed down just a bit by then.