Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Ask Voodoomama: How NOT to Ask Voodoo Mama a Question

In case you don't follow my other blog Ask Voodoo Mama, I just posted a discussion about the kinds of questions I get that I really shouldn't be getting. That old saying "There is no such thing as a stupid question" is a downright lie. Check it out and tell me if you agree.

Ask Voodoomama: How NOT to Ask Voodoo Mama a Question

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Who Skinned the Black Cat? Online Botanica sells the Face of a Black Cat as Good Luck Curio




I want to know, since when was a black cat face used for good luck?

I don't quite remember how I stumbled upon this page the other day, all I know is that I did.  I normally like to peruse Papa Jim's Botanica site because he carries stuff I don't carry. However, this is one item I won't be purchasing from him or anyone else, and I certainly won't be aspiring to carry it.

The website says "Black Cat Face. Place in your home or business for Good Luck, Protection From Evil."

"This product was added to our catalog on Thursday 24 February, 2011."

Now, I am all for  the rare and hard to find curios and I will climb a mountain or mountains (literally) to get them. But a black cat face?

I don't even know where to begin with this one.

Well, I posted a link to it on my Facebook page and got a lot of responses, which is why I thought I would blog about it and do a little scientific examination of the evidence. And, being the scientist that I am, I have an inquiring mind and I want to know, who skinned the black cat?

Any research begins with a question. We want to find out something, so we research it. We form a hypothesis and develop a theory, collect our data and then methodically go about proving or disproving the hypothesis. The results may or may not support the hypothesis. Either way, if we can confirm one way or another it's good research, even if we don't confirm the initial hypothesis because at least we have accurate information about the issue at hand and draw a conclusion or conclusions based on facts. We end up with more information than we had in the beginning of the research so we add to a specific body of knowledge that everyone can draw from. Not only do we benefit the scientific community with new found knowledge, we also benefit society at large.

Research also begins with something the researcher is passionate about. When I saw this image and the accompanying advertisement, I was appalled. And I am  not alone. Here are a couple of the comments that supported my initial reaction:

Sorcha Puridai Isn't there some law against that? It should be reported. If it originates from outside the country, it's illegal to import - or export if its inside. There should be a way to shut this down. More education is needed because there are superstitious and impressionable people out there who support this kind of trade ...

Fred Cislo Jr Okay that is just wrong! I would be pissed if somebody told me they bought that!

And there were more. but then, there was this post:

Willa Wylde im betting its not a cat face at all but a fox, you can buy them from various leather places like Tandy, i used to use them to make dream catches and such it even looks like the fox shape...just saying

It's always good to have different opinions about things. Sometimes we can't see the other side of Exu's hat because we can't stand on both sides of the street at one time. But, if we are open-minded and don't jump to conclusions, we can discover the truth based on the evidence at hand.

After reading Willa's comment, I questioned whether or not it was in fact a fox and not a cat. I am not convinced either way...yet.

Now I am writing an article about black cat sacrifice in Volume 2 of Hoodoo and Conjure Quarterly so I don't want to repeat that here, but I do want to give a little contextual background for our informal study of this alleged black cat face. There is no doubt that the use of black cats in magick has a long history in Europe and in hoodoo. Cats played a large role in ancient Egyptian society, for example, as they were used for pest control and were deified (i.e. Bast, Mafdet). In fact, cats  were afforded the same mummification and burial as people were. In ancient Greece, cats were revered and if one was found hurting or killing a cat, even accidentally, the punishment was death.

In New Orleans Voodoo, black cats have been the subject of controversial sacrifice  in the past, particularly with regards to finding the one bone in the body that is all powerful.

Thanks to Robert Tallant and other writers who focused on specific excerpts of his mostly inaccurate and sensationalized account of New Orleans Voodoo, the urban legend of the black cat as THE sacrificial lamb of New Orleans Voodoo has become an undisputed historical fact. He even has a chapter in his book Voodoo in New Orleans called Skin a Black Cat with your Teeth. According to Tallant, “ Sacrifice and the drinking of blood were integral parts of all Voodoo ceremonies. Usually it was the blood of a kid that was used, but often it was that of a black cat”(Tallant, p. 15). The prevalence and inaccuracy of such accounts is something I discuss in the article in HCQ. One thing I have not been able to find, whether truth or fiction, is the use of a black cat face specifically, for good luck.

In at least 20 articles I researched for the article in HCQ, absolute statements are made about the orgiastic parties led by Marie Laveau where the Voodoo worshippers danced around a cauldron filled with frogs and into which snakes and a black cat was tossed. Where did they get their information? Tallant of course, typically the only source cited for these statements. Since the sacred serpent, Li Grande Zombi, is our major Spirit in New Orleans, I hardly doubt anyone was throwing snakes into a cauldron. With such proliferation of unsubstantiated claims, it has become an almost iconic representation of New Orleans Voodoo, albeit completely biased and unfounded. It reminds me of a similar phenomenon that is prevalent on the internet today where people take one source, usually Wikipedia, and regurgitate the information without any critical analysis of the information and without any original authorship that contributes to the body of knowledge. YAWN....

Now the black cat bone is another issue, and it is seemingly supported by local lore and in various blues songs such as the one I have in this post. The truth is, however, the use of black cats in sacrifice didn't start with New Orleans Voodoo or hoodoo. For example, here is a description of the gruesome black cat bone ritual found in the book of St. Cyprian (O Antigo Livro de São Cipriano: Capa de Aço) first published in 1849:


Cook the body of a black cat in boiling water witH white seeds and wood from the willow until the meat is loosened from the bones. Strain the bones in a linen cloth and, in front of the mirror, place the bones, one by one in your mouth, until you find that you have the magic to make you become invisible. Keep the bone with the magic property and, if you want to go somewhere without being seen, place the bone in your mouth."


Do I have to say that a black cat bone, even the "one" alleged special bone will not make you invisible? Admittedly I have not tried it, but I would bet it just ain't so.

During the 17th century, a cat boiled in oil was believed to be excellent for dressing wounds (Russell, 1972). While the mental picture of this is reprehensible, there may have been some (unknown at the time) scientific merit to this, if it was a black cat that was used.

Researchers at the National Institutes of Health discovered the gene mutations associated with a black coat in three types of black cats: the domestic cat, jaguar and South American jaguarundi. Apparently, the mutations affect a gene in the same family as one that causes a resistance to HIV in humans. "There is a mutation in humans that knocks this gene out and causes complete resistance to HIV," O'Brien said. So it may be that the same gene responsible for a black coat may also provide resistance to diseases. You can read the whole article here.

In hoodoo and in New Orleans Voodoo, black cats are associated with good luck and have been advertised as such since the late 1930s. They are particularly good luck in sports and games of chance. The tail of a black cat when pointing upward was considered lucky, and if you stroke a cat's tail nine times before playing cards, it is said to give you a winning edge in card games.

There are many references to the various mystical attributes of black cats from numerous cultures - some positive and some negative. Most "superstitions" about black cats are positive, up until the Middle Ages, that is.

I was born and raised in New Orleans and lived there over thirty years, and I never heard of using the face of a black cat for good luck or anything else. That doesn't mean it never was, just that I never heard of it anecdotally. Even the folks I knew who practiced the darker arts never used the skin of black cats. And try as I might, I can't find reference to the use of a black cat face specifically as a good luck curio in any of the folkloric or anthropological literature. I searched the entire database of literature available through the American Anthropological Association, as well as the library at Walden University, through which I have access to hundreds of academic journals. Nothing...not even a hint. If anyone knows of a reference, please post it in the comments section because I would really love to know if I missed something.

However, my question, who skinned the black cat? is jumping the gun. I have to first prove there is indeed a black cat face on Papa Jim's website.

Research Question: Is Papa Jim's Botanica really selling a skinned black cat face on their website?

Or, is it the face of a fox? Let's examine the evidence, beginning with the obvious. Papa Jim's Botanica states: "BLACK CAT FACE... Place in your home or business for good luck, protection from evil."

Of course, you can't believe everything you read or see, so let's check out the photos and and see if we can differentiate the alleged black cat face from a black fox face.

The first aspect of the images to compare is the shape of the faces. I found a couple of photos of black fox faces and compared them against the black cat face found on Papa Jim's Botanica website. To do this, I used Photoshop to remove the backgrounds of both photos and placed them side by side for comparison. And to be completely fair, I am aware of the variations of pelts and there are some fox faces that appear more rounded than pointed, so I did a side by side comparison of those  as well.

Sample 1:



Sample 2:




Next, I took the individual photos and superimposed them on top of each other, taking care to size them to equal sizes without distorting the ratio. Note that in the images, I made the cat face image into a colored graphic in order to clearly see any similarities or differences in the overall shape of the faces.

Sample 1: Cat face superimposed on fox face

 
Sample 2: Cat face superimposed on rounded fox face


Next, I examined the details of the photos, starting with the noses. The alleged cat face appears to have a smaller nose than the fox face, which appears to be a bit square. In addition, in both of the fox photos, the snouts are narrower than the alleged black cat photo, although the fox face with a rounded nose is not as elongated.

Another detail I noticed is the fur. The fur on the fox appears a bit coarser than the fur on the alleged black cat. And the ears...it looks as if the ears of the alleged black cat face are smaller  and more centrally located than the fox ears, which appear to be larger and laying to the sides.

So far, it's not looking good.

That said, my observations are extremely limited in both the photos and the lack of an ability to hold and feel both specimens firsthand. Further, it is difficult to see the details of either picture clearly.

Even if it is not a real black cat, shouldn't the consumer be told? Why would they say it is a black cat if it is not? It's not like they are asking hundreds of dollars for it. Is it worth selling a black cat face for $22.00?

What do you think?

I have chosen not to link to the site because I am already giving them free advertising as the subject of this blog post. No doubt, some freak will read this and want to buy it. That is on them, not me. If you want to see the ad, just google the words "black cat face" and it will come right up (unfortunately).

My first cat was a black cat named Moses. He was so sweet and I really miss him even though it has been over thirty years since he has passed. I can't imagine someone skinning a black cat and saving the face to sell on a website for good luck. That just can't be good karma.







Black Cat Ju Ju at Creole Moon
 

References

Tallant, R. (1946). Voodoo in New Orleans
California Folklore Society (1964). Western Folklore, Vol 23.



Copyright 2010-2012 Denise Alvarado, All rights reserved worldwide. Please ask if you would like to repost this article.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Black Hat Tactics in Clandestine Hoodoo Wars


The term black hat comes from the internet marketing field and refers to unethical and borderline illegal (if not illegal) tactics for garnering traffic and business. They employ methods for SEO (search engine optimization) that include spamming, link farms and article spinning (basically rewriting someone else's article via the use of special software). These are the messages you get in your emails that say "Long time no see" or "check this out" or "have you seen this yet?" and when you click on the link it takes you to those prescription drug sites or some other place you have no interest in. Where do they get your emails from? Well, a lot of places, but many find mine through my contact information at my websites. They email me as if placing an order or asking a question.

There are many underhanded tactics these folks use to achieve their goals; some are effective, many are actually counterintuitive. Eventually, these techniques get the attention of Google and other search engines who remove the Black Hatter’s sites from their indices. Their sites are no longer crawled by the spiders and no longer show up in search results.

I have spent years studying the techniques of the internet marketing gurus in an effort to learn how to market by business on the internet. I have spent time on hackers forums to learn how to keep people from hacking my sites and know how to fix vulnerabilities when it does happen (and it has). The other side of the coin are the legitimate, organic means of SEO, referred to as White Hat tactics. It’s like learning to be a two headed root woman, you need to know both sides of the coin to deal with any given condition that presents itself.
I was thinking about these Black Hat/White Hat tactics and how nicely the terms apply to the internet community of hoodoos.

For example, have you ever been to a blog and someone writes a nasty little comment  from “Anonymous?” I had a few of those here during the Alvarado vs Yronwode incident. Insults were hurled complete with name calling and slander. I deleted those.

For some reason, people get riled up about something, undoubtedly triggered by a blog entry, and then go off on a tangent that has little, if anything, to do with the blog post. They speak confidently and write fearlessly, stating their opinions and making accusations that may or may not be true, but their comments are not done with any integrity because they hide behind the “anonymous” signature. Black hat hoodoo…spreading negative energy on the downlow.

How about this one: private messaging members of a forum, carefully sidestepping the forum owner, sporting their wares and promoting their business. This is usually done under an alias so they are not easily identified by the forum owner. Black hat hoodoo…advertising on someone else’s dime.

Here’s another one: writing disparaging reviews on Amazon.com that stick out like a sore thumb. This only applies if you are an author, but it’s pretty obvious when a review is an actual “critical review” as opposed to a criticism of the author fueled by some underlying jealousy or whatever. As an author, I don’t expect to get 100% positive reviews. I shouldn’t be in the business if I have unrealistic expectations like that. But, it is easy to tell when someone has a chip on their shoulder as opposed to someone who actually has some good feedback for you. I have noticed this has happened to several authors, usually by the same group of people. I even had someone write a negative review of one of my books and they admitted they never even read the book! Still, their little rating goes a long way in the overall ranking of the book. Whatever, Black Hat hoodoo… taking unfair and unprofessional pot shots with no foundation on a competitor.

Here’s a good one: links on your Facebook page by a competitor. This is a real pet peeve of mine. Post on your own damn wall, and if you don’t have enough friends and fans, then spend a few years like the rest of us staying up and working fiendishly all night, studying, marketing, and creating good products and information. Build relationships with people, learn how to network… get in the game or get out.

Here’s one that really gets my goat: the person who joins my forum and steals my content and ideas. The content is copied and pasted to another site without permission or attribution. Since I have devoted a couple of posts going off on that tangent, I will spare you another rant. I’m just sayin’…it falls into the category of Black hat hoodoo.

Okay, I have one more thing on that note and then I will move on…there is one such person on my forum who has ordered from me and copied the design and labeling of some of my products and has them for sale on their site (you know who you are). Now that’s Black Hat hoodoo with extremely LARGE huevos!

So far, the examples I have given are annoying and rude tactics, but not really dangerous. I mean, if I offer a good quality service and products then I don’t have anything to really worry about…except for the time that it takes to get these folks off of my junk.

Oh, there is one other thing I have to worry about - being banned from Google for duplicate content. Not that I am duplicating content, but that my content is copied by someone else and Google, whose behavior is shaped by algorithms, can’t tell where the original content came from. All it knows is that it is a duplication and one site has to go. Just pray it ain’t mine.

Now, there are other tactics used that are dangerous and anyone who is in the business of conjure should be aware of some of these. For example, so-called “friends” who only show up at “special” times. I call these folks the Spy Boys of hoodoo. This is a term borrowed from the Mardi Gras Indian tradition in New Orleans. On Mardi Gras and St. Joseph's night, one member of a gang - the Spy Boy - runs reconnaissance missions around his gang's path, looking for feathers and listening for chants of rival gangs. They are the scouts for the Chief. In hoodoo, these are the spies of a jealous competitor, someone who has it out for you and who is doing a work or planning a work on you. They get off on their underground alliance and report to their “chief” who needs information and wants to know what you are up to. They want to know where your vulnerabilities are. And since we are all human and the internet consists of social networking, we often post personal information about ourselves and experiences we go through. The Spy Boy, who could be female as well as male, is the snitch and reports to their “leader” and is an active participant in the Black Hat tactic.

Have you ever belonged to a forum and noticed  that if you disagree with someone or post information about something (let’s use our new magazine journal Hoodoo & Conjure Quarterly as an example), say you want to tell everyone about his great new hoodoo mag, and your comment is deleted or you are reprimanded by the forum administrator or moderator? What is that about? In this case, the Black Hat tactic is a defensive measure, designed to squelch the success of another.

Then, you notice that because you are a friend of the person who posted the discussion, all of a sudden you start experiencing a streak of “bad luck” And, that bad luck gets worse and worse until something downright dangerous happens. Maybe your children and pets have even suffered… you wonder what’s going on. You don’t want to be paranoid so maybe you talk about it to a few people you trust, and find out you are not alone. Similar things are happening to other people who have similar associations. It seems to be too much of a coincidence to BE a coincidence. So then you have a divination done and see what that might reveal and your suspicions are confirmed. This is Black Hat hoodoo at its lowest, folks.

In fact, there are tenets against targeting children and animals in most, if not all of the organized ATRs. People who breach these taboos are said to lose their power and the power of their main spirits. They only have the lower entities left to work with, and the allegiance of these lower spirits cannot be guaranteed.

People who stoop to the lowest of the Black Hat hoodoo tactics are the most dangerous because they have no super-ego monitoring their id, to put it in psychoanalytic terms. The super-ego is the part of the psyche that sets boundaries on behavior based on morals and ethics. The id is the part of the psyche that is comprised of pure instinct and impulse. They don’t care if they lose control because they have no morals. The out of control behavior that results with a poorly functioning super-ego feels powerful because of its intensity. The lengths to which they go to exact revenge with unbridled instincts makes them feel superhuman and untouchable, as if the laws of nature do not apply to them. But this is just an illusion…out of control is out of control, pure and simple. And anyone who acts maliciously towards another out of jealousy or competitiveness will eventually find themselves sucked into a dark hole with no way out. Unfortunately, these folks tend to do a lot of damage on their way down.

I am sure many people have their own examples of Black Hat hoodoo that they have experienced. Truth be told, I have merely scratched the surface here.

Copyright 2010-2012 Denise Alvarado, All rights reserved worldwide. Please ask if you would like to repost this article.

Friday, February 25, 2011

How to Make a Voodoo Doll

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Absinthe Conjure Oil (Green Fairy Oil)


Here is a sneak peak into the revised edition of the Voodoo Hoodoo Spellbook. It is an excerpt from the formulary section about Absinthe. If anyone decides to try it, please do share the results!

Absinthe is a potent alcoholic beverage made from select herbs and a large percentage of the purest alcohol. In French, the word "absinthe" means "wormwood." Accounts in ancient texts date as far as 1500 B.C. mention wormwood's medicinal as well as religious significance. The original recipe was simply wormwood leaves soaked in wine.

Absinthe was also known as the "Green Fairy" during its heyday in France in the 1800s. The Green Fairy is the English translation of La Fee Verte, the French nickname given to absinthe in the 19th century. The nickname stuck, and over a century later, “absinthe", "Green Fairy", “Green Goddess”, and “Madness in a Bottle” are some of the names that continue to be used.

According to some accounts, absinthe was first formulated in the 1790s by Dr. Pierre Ordinaire, a French doctor living in Switzerland. He made it by combining wormwood with other herbs such as hyssop, coriander, anise, and melissa, with 68% alcohol. He created the amazing elixir to treat his patients and patented it as a “cure-all”, guaranteed to heal what ails you.

The legacy of absinthe as a mystifying, addictive, and mind-altering elixir continues to this day. Absinthe has been largely and incorrectly portrayed in fine art, music, literature and the media as an unnaturally glowing green liquid that causes over-the-top hallucinations and madness.

Absinthe is an anise-flavored liquor or spirit that is made by steeping wormwood (wormwood has been defined as the quinine of the poor) and other aromatic herbs (hyssop, lemon balm, and angelica) in alcohol. The drink is distinguished by its dazzling emerald blue-green clarity, due to its chlorophyll content. When mixed with water, the liquor changes to cloudy white. Absinthe drinking was exported to New Orleans and the French Quarter, where the Old Absinthe House has been a tourist attraction for more than a century. Absinthe appeared in New Orleans liquor advertisements as early as 1837, but its popularity didn't take off until the latter half of the 19th century with the opening of the barroom that would become the Old Absinthe House in 1874.

The classic French absinthe ritual involves placing a sugar cube on a flat perforated spoon, which
rests on the rim of the glass containing a measure or “dose” of absinthe. Iced water is then very
slowly dripped on to the sugar cube, which gradually dissolves and drips, along with the water, into
the absinthe, causing the green liquor to louche (“loosh”) into an opaque opalescent white as the
essential oils precipitate out of the alcoholic solution. Usually three to four parts water are added to one part of 68% absinthe.[1]

In the Czech Republic they have a different absinthe drinking ritual, which is not recommended. They set it up similar to the traditional way with a slotted spoon and sugar cubes, except they soak the sugar directly in the absinthe, then set it on the spoon and put a match to it. The absinthe in the glass, and the sugar, both ignite and the sugar melts and drips down into the glass. The remnants of the cube are eventually dropped into the absinthe and the fire is blown out. The warm absinthe is now ready to drink. This method of absinthe preparation is obviously dangerous, and again is not recommended.[2]

Aleister Crowley wrote about the spiritual/metaphysical function of water in the making of absinthe in 1917:

 "Here, too are marble basins hollowed—and hallowed!--by the drippings of the water which creates by baptism the new spirit of absinthe."

Absinthe conjure oil is used to enhance psychic visions and create unusual spiritual clarity and heightened clarity of mind and vision. This oil will also produce vivid dreams and is a powerful aphrodisiac.  

Like the absinthe ritual for creating the beverage, conjuring the magickal oil also involves a ritual of baptizing the spirit of absinthe into being. Make sure your herbs are fresh and green, though dried. This is extremely important for the final product. Here is the formula for making absinthe:

Herbs
  • Cardamom
  • Lemon balm (Melissa)
  • Hyssop
  • Common wormwood (Artemesia absinthium)
  • Petite Absinthe (Artemesia Pontica)
  • Green anise or Spanish anise, powdered
  • Whole and powdered fennel
  • Calamus, powdered (minor ingredient)
  • Fennel, powdered
  • Peppermint

Essential Oils:
  • Oil of wormwood
  • Anise essential oil
  • Peppermint essential oil

Additional ingredients:
  • Base alcohol (beet alcohol or grape alcohol is traditionally used, but you can substitute Everclear since we are not concerned with the taste)
  • Distilled water
  • Sugar cube

If you have gathered your own wormwood, your will need to strip the leaves from the stems because you only want to use the leaves. Combine all of the herbs in a mortar. Gently macerate the herbs together until they are well mixed and the fragrance is strong. Pour a quantity of base alcohol in a copper pot and dilute with distilled water to about 85%. Add the herb mix and allow to steep in the alcohol over night. In the morning, add a little more water and heat over the stove on low heat for about an hour. Keep the pot covered, and periodically stir the mixture and collect the condensation from the lid of the pot. Take off of the stove and allow the liquid to cool. Strain the alcohol out of the herbs and do a second maceration with the artemesia, hyssop, and lemon balm using about half of the strained liquid. You can either add the herbs in loose, or put them in a tea bag to make the straining process easier later. Warm over the stove until hot but do not allow it to boil. Remove the mixture from the stove and allow it to cool. This mixture should be a bright emerald green. Strain the liquid again. Filter through cheesecloth into a clear bottle until clear of herbs and sediment. Add the first liquid to the bottle and cover tightly.

Allow this mixture to sit for a couple of weeks to allow all of the fine sediment to settle to the bottom of the container. When the liquid appears very clear, you are ready to make your smaller bottles of Absinthe Conjure Oils.

For a one dram bottle of Absinthe Conjure Oil, take about 10 full droppers of the Green Fairy liquid and put in the bowl. Add one full of dropper each of the oil of Wormwood and the anise essential oil. To this, add about half a dropper full of peppermint. Gently stir the oils and liquid. Now, fill your smaller dram bottle about 3/4 of the way full with the Green Fairy liquid.  Place a funnel into the top of the smaller one dram bottle and put a sugar cube into funnel, so that the distilled water you will add has to pass through the sugar. This is the actual baptism of the Green Fairy. Using an eye dropper, slowly add the distilled water, drop by drop, on the sugar cube until the bottle is full. The final mixture should be a milky green if done correctly.

You should have enough extra absinthe elixir to last a long, long time. It will not go bad so long as you store it in a cool dark place, in a dark amber bottle (or other dark colored glass). Do not refrigerate your absinthe elixir because some of the chemical constituents may crystallize and may not remix with the other ingredients when it reaches room temperature.

Most folks who make the Green Fairy conjure oil will simply blend the essential oils in a base of grapeseed oil, perhaps with a sprig of wormwood added to the bottle. This is certainly a less complicated method. However, as you can imagine, the effect is not nearly the same on a magickal level. You don't have the intimate relationship with the herbs, the same kind of intensity of intent from the whole process, and you don't have the baptism of the spirit of absinthe. The technique I have described here really is a fabulous process and you will feel ecstatic when you get it right.

The base absinthe formula is a vintage recipe for the absinthe brew and so it can technically be drunk as an alcoholic beverage. Please exercise caution when consuming absinthe as it is an extremely powerful Spirit.

Here are a couple of vintage New Orleans recipes for drinking absinthe. While drinking absinthe is not a hoodoo activity, it is decidedly New Orleans and so I have included them as a little lagniappe for their historical value.

Green Fairy Frappe

1 ounce base Green Fairy formula
½ ounce simple syrup
7 fresh mint leaves
1 ounce soda water

Combine mint leaves and simple syrup in a tall glass. Add crushed ice. Place an absinthe spoon over the top of the glass and place a sugar cube. Add the absinthe by carefully pouring it through the sugar cube into the glass. When all the absinthe has been poured into the glass through the sugar cube, cover with a cocktail shaker and shake vigorously. Top off the drink with soda water.

Absinthe Cocktail

1 jigger absinthe
1 teaspoon sugar syrup
1 dash anisette
2 dashes Peychaud bitters
2 ounces charged water

Fill a highball glass a little more than half full with cracked or crushed ice. Pour in the absinthe, sugar sirup, anisette, and bitters, then squirt in carbonated or other live water. Jiggle with a barspoon until the mixture is well frapped. Strain into cocktail glasses which have been iced ahead of time.[3]


[1]The Virtual Absinthe Museum, (2002-2008). Retrieved, July 27, 2010 from  http://www.oxygenee.com/absinthe-ritual.html
[2] Earl, J. (2008). A Brief History of Absinthe
[3] From Famous New Orleans Drinks and how to mix‘em by S.C. Arthur 1937

Copyright 2010-2012 Denise Alvarado, All rights reserved worldwide. Please ask if you would like to repost this article.