The Green Hour with Pernod Absinthe

While we here in America think of “Happy Hour” as that time in bars where we can get discounted well-drinks, in French cafes, 5pm is known as l’heure verte, or “the green hour” where green Absinthe (known as “verte”) is enjoyed.

Absinthe is a spirit made from a grape distillate macerated with a blend of herbs (licorice, petite wormwood, nettle and more). The green color comes from the nettle. While Absinthe was the drink of choice in France in 1910, it was banned for many decades. In the early 2000’s, the absinthe ban was repealed around the world and the green liquid started to flow again.

Absinthe is an elegant, sipping drink, not something to drink to get drunk. It is a relaxing drink that should not be rushed. In fact, Absinthe is an upper and you just can’t be angry when you drink it. It is a very pure spirit and one of the healthiest you can drink. 

In order to rethink absinthe, Pernod Absinthe has been setting up “Green Hours” and I headed to one recently at Terrine in Los Angeles. Absinthe is 136 proof so it needs to be diluted, and as it is diluted with water and sugar, it becomes cloudy. You can drink it like this or perhaps in a cocktail like the ones we enjoyed at this Green Happy Hour.

The Green Beast by French bartender Charles Vexenat is made with Pernod Absinthe, simple syrup, lime juice, water, cucumber.

The Green Beast

Terrine LA’s Ryan Wainwright created a few other cocktails: The Terrine Mauresque is made with Pernod Absinthe, Lemon, Orgeat and Prosecco and Green Sleeves is made with Hayman’s Old Tom, Pernod Absinthe, Lemon, Egg White and Lavender Bitters.

Terrine Mauresque and Green Sleeves

Go Green! Find a Green Hour near you or do it yourself at home! A glass of Absinthe or a cocktail with Absinthe is a lovely way to end the work day and start the evening off right.