Posted by: Matt Browner Hamlin | February 1, 2010

Joaquin Simo on Absinthe

The fine folks at Pernod have put out this video of one of America’s top bartenders, Joaquin Simo of Death & Company, talk about the history of absinthe and the role of the bartender as a technician and host. It’s a good mix of history and craft, and exactly the sort of web video production I like seeing out of spirit companies. Well, the techno soundtrack is a bit much. But other than that…



  1. It’s a shame that the fine folks at Pernod don’t know how to spell “phylloxera.”

    There are also doubts about their claim to be the creator of absinthe as shown on the video. Here’s a more detailed blog article about this:

  2. An interesting video. Not a bad rendition of the history of absinthe! A few things were left out (the phylloxera plague was only a small part of the reason absinthe became popular), but fairly accurate all the same.

    My biggest issue with the video was at the end, where Pernod describes itself as the creator of absinthe in 1805. This isn’t actually true, despite Pernod’s efforts to rewrite history.

    The most disappointing aspect of Pernod is that they used to be the gold standard of absinthe before the ban. Their product was amazing (and existing bottles of pre-ban absinthe are still amazing). Their current product is nothing like the original, and is a poor example of absinthe as a whole.

    The efforts of the Wormwood Society to discuss their product with brand representatives have been ignored.

    • Good catch Alan & Brian. And thanks for the link to Brian’s post.

      Pernod’s assertion that they created absinthe is pretty far out there, for all the reasons Brian lays out in the post. Good luck fighting the good fight with them.

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