Absinthia — formally known as Absinthia’s Bottled Spirits — is a woman-owned absinthe producer based in Oakland, California (though the product is produced in Fresno). What else could the owner, with a name like J. Absinthia Vermut, produce but an American take on the green fairy?
Absinthia uses vintage Swiss recipes, natural ingredients, and no sugar to produce its two expressions, a blanche (clear) absinthe and a more traditional verte (green) offering.
Says Vermut of the blanche offering: “We start with a neutral spirit made from biodynamic grapes from California, and distilled that with organic herbs – fresh wormwood (artemesia absinthium), star anise, fennel seed, and coriander seed – from an organic farm in Oregon.” To create the Verte expression, Absinthia distills the Blanche with organic artemisia pontica, anise hyssop, and lemon balm.
Both expressions are 110 proof. We tried them both, so let’s dig in.
Absinthia Absinthe Superieure Blanche – Served neat, a pure essence of sweet licorice candy dominates from start to finish here, both on nose and palate. A hint of lemon zest adds some needed nuance, but water doesn’t do much for the spirit, merely dulling its otherwise powerful (yet entirely straightforward) impact. Louches moderately with water and sugar. B
Absinthia Absinthe Superieure Verte – A somewhat yellow-tinted green, it’s fair to say there’s more going on with this absinthe, which drinks neat with a more aggressive note of earthy forest floor and some bitter, almost amaro-like punchiness. The notes of lemon peel from the Blanche follow over on this expression, and given time the finish exudes exotic, jasmine-scented floral notes. Louches rather weakly, but its herbal elements shine well with some water and a pop of sugar. B+
each $45 per 375ml bottle / absinthia.com