Absinthe Thujone

Absinthe thujone is the chemical found in Absinthe’s important ingredient, the plant called Common Wormwood, or Artemisia Absinthium to give it its organic name. The chemical thujone was partially responsible for Absinthe being banned during the early 1900s in lots of countries across the world and thujone is still tightly regulated nowadays, particularly in the United States (or states united).

Thujone was thought to be much like THC present in cannabis and Absinthe has been purported to be psychoactive and have psychedelic results causing hallucinations and insanity. Absinthe had been popular with the Bohemian set in Montmartre inside Paris and several artists as well as writers claimed that Absinthe, the Green Fairy, gave them inspiration and their genius. Famous Absinthe drinkers consist of Oscar Wilde, Ernest Hemingway, Van Gogh, Gauguin, Degas, Baudelaire and absinthethujone.com Verlaine. Some say that Van Gogh’s madness was caused by Absinthe and that he cut off his ear under its influence. Absinthe was even blamed for a man murdering his family, although he had ingested many other strong alcoholic beverages after the Absinthe.

Prohibition campaigners utilized news of the murder to campaign for the banning of Absinthe and blamed France’s growing problems of alcoholism on the emerald liquor.

Is Absinthe thujone Dangerous?

Today’s studies suggest that it was actually the alcohol (ethanol) content of Absinthe which was dangerous as opposed to the thujone. Absinthe is doubly strong as spirits like whisky and vodka and can be 75% alcohol. Care should therefore be taken any time consuming Absinthe. Thujone is merely obtained in minute quantities and must therefore trigger no major unwanted effects or even health problems. The EU stipulates that alcoholic beverages with an ABV {alcohol by volume) level over 25% may only contain a maximum of 10mg/kg of thujone, beverages classed as “bitters” may contain around 35mg/kg, it is not completely clear which class Absinthe suits but most brands of Absinthe have much lower than 35mg with many being beneath 10mg/kg. In the US it is simply legal to purchase or sell Absinthes with trace amounts of thujone.

High doses of thujone can be harmful causing convulsions but you would need to drink a large amount of Absinthe to take that volume of thujone and it would be impossible to drink that amount, you’d be comatose from alcohol until then!

Absinthe Elements

It is known that Henri-Louis Pernod, who owned the very first Absinthe distillery, employed the herbs wormwood, aniseed, fennel, lemon balm, hyssop, angelica root, dittany, star anise, nutmeg, juniper as well as veronica to make his famous Pernod Absinthe. The primary oil from all of these herbs is in charge of La Louche, the clouding which comes about when water is put into Absinthe. These herbs specially the aniseed and anise lead to the distinctive aniseed or licorice taste of Absinthe and wormwood is responsible for the particular bitter flavor. Absinthe is usually utilized as bitters in cocktails.

There are lots of brands of Absinthe or Absinthe replacements which were developed during the bar and therefore contain no Absinthe thujone or wormwood, but some would say that Absinthe isn’t Absinthe without Absinthe thujone and the bitter style of wormwood. If you would like real Absinthe look for brands made up of wormwood or Absinthe thujone.