Now that the semester is finally over, I should be able to get back to more frequent postings.
For months now whenever the subject of alcohol has come up, my sister and I have both wanted to try absinthe. On friday night, I bought a bottle, and send her a txt message to let her know. She promptly replied that she'd just bought one too. And we're not even twins.
Absinthe is a very strong aniseed flavoured spirit. In addition to being anywhere from 65%-90% alcohol, it was widely reputed to have hallucinogenic properties derived from wormwood. It was banned around Europe 100 years ago after a man murdered his wife and children after drinking two glasses of absinthe. Somehow everyone disregarded the five litres of wine, six glasses of cognac, two creme de menthes and two coffees laced with brandy that he also consumed and blamed the murders solely on the absinthe.
The proper preparation of absinthe involves diluting it 3:1 or 5:1 with ice cold water. The water is poured through a sugar cube held on a slotted spoon above the absinthe. Some of the non-water soluble elements come out of solution and cloud the drink, turning it a milky white colour. It also brings out some of the other flavours that are overpowered by the anise when drunk straight.
We also tried it straight just to see what it was like. The one I bought is 90% alcohol, so it was damn strong. You can feel it evaporate on your lips as you drink it, and you can certainly feel the burn when you drink it. The anise flavour is overpowering.
I highly recommend it if you like aniseed.