Absinthe is perhaps the world's most misunderstood spirit.
The anise-flavored, herb-infused liquor was banned in countries around the world soon after the turn of the 20th century, due to the supposedly hallucinogenic effects of wormwood, one of its ingredients.
While the elixir may not actually be psychotropic, we do find it quite delicious. And five years ago this week, it once again became legal to sell in the United States.
Honor that momentous occasion by enjoying some absinthe this weekend. While you can drink it with just water and sugar in a traditional Absinthe Drip, it also makes an intriguing cocktail ingredient. Check out the gallery below for some of our favorite absinthe tipples.
Like the Corpse Reviver No. 2, this New Orleans classic uses only enough absinthe to coat the inside of the glass, but that tiny amount completely changes this combo of rye whiskey, sugar and bitters. The rye is in fact a relatively modern addition; mix up The Original Sazerac to try the older, cognac-based version. View recipe: Sazerac
Despite its name, this absinthe punch is actually quite simple to fix and contains just five ingredients. Our recipe makes just one serving, but you can easily adapt it to serve a large party; for a whole (750-mL) bottle of absinthe, multiply everything else by 25. View recipe: The Green Beast
Ernest Hemingway was a famously prodigious drinker; what's less well-known is his bartending skill. Papa himself claimed to have invented this combination of absinthe and Champagne. View recipe: Death in the Afternoon
Besides a couple French ingredients, this refreshing punch doesn't have much connection to the Parisian radicals for whom it's named. The sweet-and-fruity concoction is the perfect beverage for an outdoor party. View recipe: Sans-Culottes
This quaffable drink pairs absinthe's signature anise flavor with a range of citrus ingredients: orange juice, triple sec and fizzy lemon-lime soda. View recipe: Orange Poppy
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