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Absinthe Herbs

Below is a list of common herbs that can be used to make absinthe. The principal herbs or botanicals are grande wormwood, green anise, and fennel. Botanicals such as petite wormwood, hyssop and melissa give absinthe its green color. Many of the herbs used to make absinthe can be cultivated in climates that are similar to that of the Mediterranean.




Latin: Artemisia absinthium. It is a member of the daisey family Compositae (Asteraceae).

Is is also called grande wormwood or common wormwood.

Use: Source of thujone and absinthe's bitterness.

This herb is easily obtainable at local nurseries and very easy to grow as an ornamental. Growing wormwood from seed is easy and inexpensive.

Green Anise

Latin: Pimpinella anisum. It is a member of the Apiaceae family.

It is also called aniseed.

Use: Gives absinthe its licorice flavor. Counters absinthe bitterness. Helps to promote the absinthe louche.

Even though aniseed is eary to grow, it is more practical to purchase organic aniseed for making absinthe.

Fennel
Latin: Foeniculum vulgare. It is a member of the Apiaceae (Umbelliferae) family.

Use: Give absinthe its fennel and licorice flavor. Helps to counters absinthe bitterness. Helps promote the absinthe louche.

The plant thrives in Mediterranean climates and the flowers are similar to those of the carrot, a flat "umbel". Fennel is easy to grow, but it is more practical to purcahse organic fennel seed for making absinthe. You can also use Florence Fennel Seeds ("Foeniculum vulgare var. dulce"), also called Finocchio. Florence Fennel Seeds are more aromatic and sweeter than common fennel. Florence Fennel Seeds are hard to find and are very expensive.

Coriander
Latin: Coriandrum sativum - It is an annual herb in the Apiaceae family.

Use: Gives absinthe a citrus spiciness.

The plant has been grown as a carrot-like perrenial.

Angelica
Latin: Angelica archangelica (or A. litoralis) It is a member of the Apiaceae (Umbelliferae) family.

Use: Counters absinthe bitterness.

It is found from the lands as far north as Finland and extends beyond the Mediterranean.

Hyssop
Latin: Hyssopus officinalis - It is a member of the Lamiaceae (Mint) family.

Use: Adds freshness, and produces the green color common in most absinthe.

As with most members of the Mint family hyssop is very aromatic and is easily grown in the garden.

Licorice
Latin: Glycyrrhiza glabra - It is a member of the Fabaceae (bean) family.

Use: Counters absinthe bitterness.

It is grown extensively in Russia, Spain, Iran and India. It is one of the most widely consumed herb in the world.

Star Anise
Latin: Illicuim verum (also Illicuim floridanum and several other species) - It is a member of the magnolia family, Magnoiliaceae (also Illiaceae).

Use: Counters absinthe bitterness, enhances the louche.

The plant is highly ornamental perennial and has showy white flowers that become the ornamental seed pod.

PepperMint
Latin: Mentha x piperita - It is a member of the Lamiaceae (Mint) family.

Use: Adds minty freshness, and produces a vibrant green color if used to color absinthe.

Very easy groundcover to cultivate. It can become quite invasive in the garden if left alone.

Elecampane

Latin: Inula Heleniumis - It is a perennial composite plant common in many parts of Great Britain.

It is also called horse-heal or marchalan.

Use: It adds a camphoraceous aroma and adds a pungent and bitter taste to adsinthe.

Dittany
Latin: Origanum dictamnus - It is a member of the Lamiaceae (Mint) family

Use: Provides a sweet-herbal taste with hints of sage and peppermint.

Easy to grow, the same genus as oregano.

 

Herbs typically used in the secondary maceration to color absinthe green.

Petite Wormwood

Latin: Artemisia pontica.

Also known as Roman Wormwood or small wormwood.

Use: Wormwood aromatic, mild bitterness and for coloring absinthe green.

Easy to grow in Mediteranian climates.

Hyssop
Latin: Hyssopus officinalis - It is a member of the Lamiaceae (Mint) family.

Use: Adds freshness. Typically used for coloring absinthe green.

As with most members of the Mint family hyssop is very aromatic and is easily grown in the garden.

Lemon Balm
Latin: Melissa officinalis - It is a member of the Lamiaceae (Mint) family.

Use: Used to add a lemon/citrus flavor and for coloring absinthe green.

Easy to grow as an ornamental ground cover.

 

Find here a list of examples of absinthe recipe.

 
Absinthe Buyers Guide