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The Surreal and Savory Experience of Louisiana's Absinthe Bars

submitted on 16 May 2023 by foodndrink.org
There comes a time in every man's life when he must step away from the ordinary and dive headfirst into the surreal, the unknown, and the downright delectable. It is in this moment that one finds themselves teetering on the edge of sanity, peering curiously into the abyss of temptation and desire. And, my friends, there is perhaps no greater temptation than the alluring green fairy that dances playfully within the hallowed halls of Louisiana's absinthe bars.

A Brief History of the Green Fairy

For the uninitiated, allow me to provide a brief introduction to this enchanting elixir. Absinthe, a potent and storied spirit, has been known to induce hallucinations, inspire creativity, and even spark madness in those who partake. Born from a bizarre union of botanicals (including the notorious wormwood), this mystical green liquid has a history steeped in controversy and myth. Banned for nearly a century in the United States due to its alleged mind-altering properties, absinthe was re-embraced by the masses in 2007 when the ban was lifted, and a new generation of imbibers was introduced to its mysterious allure. Like moths to a flame, we were drawn to this forbidden fruit, this intoxicating nectar, and we have never looked back.

Where the Green Fairy Resides

But where, you might ask, can one find such a delight in the great state of Louisiana? Fear not, dear reader, for I have ventured into the belly of the beast and returned with tales of these elusive watering holes. Read on, if you dare, and discover the bewitching world of Louisiana's absinthe bars.

The Old Absinthe House - New Orleans

We begin our journey in the hallowed streets of New Orleans, a city that has long been synonymous with indulgence and debauchery. It is here, on the corner of Bourbon and Bienville, that one finds the Old Absinthe House - a veritable temple dedicated to the worship of our green muse. Established in 1806, this historic establishment has played host to a menagerie of colorful characters over the years, from pirates and politicians to writers and artists, all seeking solace and inspiration in the loving embrace of the green fairy. The atmosphere is one of dark, smoky decadence - a fitting tribute to the spirit that has captivated so many.
  • The Absinthe Ritual: Patrons of the Old Absinthe House are treated to an authentic absinthe experience, complete with ornate glasses, slotted spoons, and sugar cubes. The ritual involves placing the sugar cube atop the spoon, drizzling ice-cold water over the sugar until it dissolves, and then watching in awe as the green liquid below transforms into a milky, opalescent potion. To partake in this ritual is to travel back in time and touch the very essence of absinthe's mystique.

Pirate's Alley Café - New Orleans

Just a short stumble from the Old Absinthe House, hidden within the winding labyrinth of the French Quarter, lies Pirate's Alley Café. This clandestine hideaway, nestled between the towering St. Louis Cathedral and the historic Cabildo, offers a more intimate and whimsical approach to absinthe consumption. With its eclectic décor, featuring walls adorned with trinkets and treasures from around the globe, and a robust menu of absinthe offerings, Pirate's Alley Café is a haven for those seeking a more casual dalliance with the green goddess. The outdoor courtyard, draped in Spanish moss and lit by flickering candles, provides the perfect setting for a rendezvous with the green fairy beneath the stars.
  • Try the Absinthe Frappé: A frosty, minty concoction designed to beat the sweltering Louisiana heat, the Absinthe Frappé is to be sipped slowly, allowing the cool, refreshing flavors to wash over your palate and summon the green fairy from her slumber.

Revel Café & Bar - Shreveport

Our final destination on this whirlwind tour of Louisiana absinthe bars is Revel Café & Bar, located in the heart of Shreveport. A relative newcomer to the scene, Revel has quickly established itself as a premier destination for absinthe enthusiasts, boasting an impressive selection of both traditional and modern absinthe cocktails. The bar's sleek, modern design, complete with gleaming copper accents and plush seating, serves as a stark contrast to the more traditional establishments we've explored thus far. The atmosphere is one of sophistication and elegance, as patrons are encouraged to sip and savor their absinthe creations with a discerning eye and a refined palate.
  • Experience the Absinthe Suissesse: A delightful marriage of absinthe, orgeat, egg white, and cream, the Absinthe Suissesse is a frothy, indulgent treat that begs to be savored slowly, with each sip revealing a new layer of complexity and intrigue.
And so, dear reader, I leave you with this: a glimpse into the beguiling world of Louisiana's absinthe bars, where the green fairy reigns supreme and the ordinary gives way to the extraordinary. Venture forth, and may you find solace and inspiration in her hallowed embrace.


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