In Absinthia Title
Absinthe makes the tart grow fonder. - Dowson
Michael likes Kubler in Corpse Revivers

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Absinthe Cocktails Book
There is a Spoon!

Bleu, Blanche et Verte
Posted by Jonathan
on 02/22/07

There are two "colors" of absinthes, green and clear. While there are other disturbing colors for sale out there (red and black come to mind), these are really the only two "colors" you will see from any absinthe with a claim to authenticity. The greens range from a pale green tint, to a bright green radioactive color, while the clear ones are usually just that - perfectly clear. It all has to do with the recipe used to make the absinthe.

The famous color is, of course, green or verte, which leads to all kinds green imagery, unabashedly used even here at In Absinthia. La fee verte is the green fairy, a muse reputedly seen by many of the more bohemian authors. An important facet to any green absinthe, the shade can often be an excellent indicator to the final quality of the absinthe. Original color (ie, before louching) is an important part of the Fee Verte grading system, as a natural color is much preferable to a nuclear, artificial green. The green color comes from the last stage of making absinthe, where the final distillate is soaked once again in a mixture of green herbs like petite absinthe and hyssop. As it adds an important dimension to the taste of a good absinthe, those manufacturers that artificially color their absinthes are missing the point!

A clear absinthe comes about due using a different recipe, which generates a very clear, crystalline liquor. Most famous as the result of the Swiss process of making absinthe, it generally results in a slightly less alcoholic absinthe (around 55%, instead of the 65% or more for verte). These clear, Swiss, absinthes are often called La Bleue, for the beautiful blue-tinged louche you get from the better labels. Clear French absinthes are also known as blanche, which is more literally white.

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