Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge: Smooth objects presented the usual think outside the box challenge for me. How to combine a smooth object with the smooth of the Santana song the subject of which could reasonably characterized as an intoxicating relationship. So what object would be smooth yet intoxicating. Hmm. I could think of quite a few, but I needed a photo to “better suit [the] mood.” All of this thinking got my head spinning and lead naturally enough to some photos of Absinthe being served at Drackenberg’s, the cigar bar near my home. Assuming that Absinthe can be an object (how not? is my thought) and smooth need not refer to a physical surface I was on my way.
Absinthe is not, contrary to common thought, a liqueur since it is not bottled with sugar. It is a licorice-flavored greenish liquid that is typically very high-proof (90 – 148 proof). As a result it is almost always served with water and is often the subject of a ritual involving setting fire to the drink (which serves to reduce the alcohol content). The photo here is of one of the many ways of mixing Absinthe which involve setting the drink aflame. While there are special Absinthe glasses to be had, any kind of glass will do. For much of the last century Absinthe was banned in countries throughout the world because it was thought to be a hallucinogen. The claims were false and Absinthe bans have largely been repealed. Absinthe is no more or less dangerous than any other alcoholic beverage of a similar proof, which of course means that undiluted high-proof absinthe can be very dangerous indeed.
The photo below shows a brandy snifter containing a flaming dollop of absinthe (absinthe burns with a blue flame). The flaming liquid and its container are mirrored in the highly polished bar counter giving the flame and its container an eerily smooth look.