By S. B. MacDonald
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Extra resources for Absinthe Antiques: A Collection from la Belle Epoque
Belonging to a wonderful series of spoons, this rare Les Grillagées #2 has slightly raised sidewalls to surround the sugar. It literally is a combination of a grille and a spoon. This lovely Les Cuillères #1 is an essential part of any collection. The spoons in this series feature a small platform for the sugar in the center of a traditional spoon. When placed upside-down atop the glass, the cupped platform cradles the sugar nicely. These charming spoons are happy to be seeing regular use after a century of storage.
The one on the right shows wear on its dose line. An example of beauty in simplicity, this plain bistrot Egg glass holds absinthe with a completed louche. The louche is slightly translucent with wonderful light effects and opalescence. The thickness of the glass in the lower half is clearly visible when filled. Three stages of a developing louche are shown here. The first drops of water cause smoke-like effects as water reacts with the absinthe. These turn to rolling clouds of fog, eventually blending into the final stage, as seen on the previous page.
Absinthe fountains are also used to dispense water; these devices possess multiple spigots called robinettes, from which several people can add water to their absinthe simultaneously. Today, reproduction fountains are available from many vendors and are quite affordable. During a social gathering, fountains add elegance, and become a communal focal point. Under no circumstances should one ever light absinthe-soaked sugar on fire. This so called Bohemian ritual is a myth manufactured by unscrupulous distillers.