The green fairy is no laughing matter. At a super-high proof with an intense herbal flavor, it’s no wonder some people still think absinthe has psychoactive effects. (Really, it’s only hallucinogenic when used in extreme excess.) Because of these finer qualities, absinthe is a fine addition to cocktails. Like bitters, it can add a finishing touch of aroma. Or it can take on a more pivotal role as a base spirit. And there are many more options in between. Start playing by trying out these five ways to use the green fairy.
Never thought you could shoot absinthe? Think again: The potent spirit often exceeds 50 percent alcohol. But when it’s just one element in the shot, absinthe can help get the job done a little faster. Try this: Tough to Hear
This is the classic way to drink absinthe. That doesn’t make it any less inventive. Dripping cold water onto a sugar cube sitting on an absinthe spoon, a process that dilutes and sweetens a measure of absinthe, allows you to dissect all of the different flavors of the devilish green fairy. Try this: Absinthe Drip
Swishing a little absinthe in a glass leaves a subtle hint of flavor and aroma. It’s a great option when any more absinthe would overpower the drink. Be real: Absinthe isn’t exactly lacking in personality. A little goes a long, boozy way. Try this: Black Barrel Sazerac
Punches have a reputation for causing bad decisions—oh, and being incredibly tasty. Adding absinthe increases both of those factors exponentially. Go on. Have a little fun. Try this: The Green Beast
Think you know the booze?
Let’s start with some basics.