Absinth Returns



The modern day renaissance in asbinthe drinking in fact started in the Czech Republic, and the new worldwide popularity can be traced back to a gentleman called Ing. Boháče from Slavonice. One bottle was made for his Besídka Hotel by Radomil Hill, whose family had originally produced absinthe during the high times of The First Republic in the 1920s. The Green Fairy –Zelena Muza – in the absinthe bottle made her first reappearance on the world stage in a beautiful Southern Bohemian town. By chance a theater group Divadlo Sklep -who were involved with the hotel – spotted the absinthe bottle and asked for some, the Green Fairy spread her wings and headed to Prague with that lucky band of actors.




Why would someone ask for absinth? It is actually well known! One only has to look around former Hapsburg Europe for other examples of this homemade thujone rich drink. For example Polish Piołunówka; this brew is named after piołun” which is the Polish word for wormwood; the French word for wormwood is absinthe. Piołunówka is made by macerating wormwood and other herbs in alcohol and not by distilling; it is claimed that this helps the wormwood, and it’s constituent thujone,  to survive in a much more potent form. Then of course there’s Pelinovak from the former countries of Yugoslavia



3 responses to “Absinth Returns

  1. FYI, piołunówka is made solely of young wormwood (leaves and flowertops) harvested in August or earlier, water, spirit and sugar (168 g/l).

    Unlike absinthe, the process of maceration is longer, and piołunówka is usually 45%-50% vol, thus can considered as one of absinthe’s predecessors, if no other herbs apart from wormwood are to be found there.

    The best and the only genuine piołunówka was the one by J.A. Baczewski-produced now in Vienna (50% vol), and the more robust so-to-say version was recently re-created in Poland but sold in a few places. Kosher piołunówka that you may come across has nothing to do with piołunówka per se and is best avoided.

    Nowadays, piołunówka together with other nalewkas is made at home, if it is not aged like them.

    Thujone content of piołunówka according to 17th CE recipe would produce a spirit cont. circa 20 mg/l, if so far no measures have been taken nor any vintage piołunówka was discovered.

  2. Hi

    Thank you very much for your comments. Scotty Bones is making piołunówka & had some questions – but they are lost in another comments thread.

    Is it OK that I pull your reply and Scotty’s question together in a new blog post? -as I know that Leif and other readers are interested in this subject – then perhaps you could reply to the questions? Otherwise this interesting information is going to get lost.

    Thanks again for your contribution, absinthist.

    A couple of weeks ago I bought a book which looks like a Czech translation of Polish recipes – I want to translate that into English too, and I would appreciate your comments.

  3. No problem. If possible let me know via e-mail where this post is and I shall answer all the questions in that matter.

    The book might be interesting, could you send me some scans, then I would be able to tell you more about these recipes.

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