‘Le Fee Verte’ might be a nickname which conjures up images of cute forest critters, but the truth is, Absinthe has an infamous reputation in history.
Historically made in Switzerland and France by distilling wormwood, fennel and star anise, the flavour is comparable to the herbal notes of liquorice and boasts a hefty AVB which can be anywhere between 45 and 75%.
Known for its strength and its ability to cause hallucinations, Absinthe is pretty strong stuff which had its heyday in the Victorian era. Emerald Green in colour, the spirit was associated with illicit behaviour, violence and general debauchery. It was even banned in many countries in the early 19th century.
Just one glass is enough to make you feel a tad tiddly and it was even too much for famous writer Oscar Wilde despite his rambunctious and sometimes scandalous lifestyle:
“After the first glass you see things as you wish they were.
After the second, you see things as they are not.
Finally you see things as they really are, and that is the most horrible thing in the world.”
But in recent years, we have started to leave the exuberant wives tales behind and begin to appreciate the fine taste and quality of this delicious French spirit.
Absinthe is no longer a misunderstood drink and we see it cropping up in the trendy and cutting edge cocktail bars of London, Paris and New York more and more.
One of these bars is The Daisy – a Parisian inspired subterranean cocktail bar hidden away in the heart of the NQ. With the effortless sophistication of French drinking culture at its very core, the inclusion of Absinthe on the menu is very much on-brand with the bar and harks back to the romantic hedonism of a time gone by.
The Daisy is campaigning for the resurgence of this beautiful spirit and not only can you find it in a cocktail or two, but they also have three brands available by the glass; Absinthe Jade 1901 (68%), La Fee Parisienne (68%) and Liqoristerie De Provence Versinthe (45%).
All of these will be served the traditional way in a beautiful glass fountain which drips iced water over a sugar cube to dilute your drink and provide a bit of theatre before you can take a long sip of the cool, aromatic flavours of Absinthe.
This is just one delicious example of the fine spirits you will find on the menu at The Daisy, but if you like strong liquor, elegant drinks, and trying something new, then you should get yourself down at your earliest convenience and see if you can chase the Green Fairy…
The Daisy, 44 Tib St, Manchester M4 1LA