Thar’ She Blows – Absinthe in Early Australia

We at are on a particular journey to uncover the hidden history of our Green Muse in early Australian history, and show that it was not just a Continental phenomenon, but that the importation and consumption of absinthe was an established part of society down under.

One part of the detective tale is establishing the trade routes, and given the predominant French presence in the South Pacific, it is not unreasonable to have assumed that the Franco-governed islands would be be a reasonable jumping off point.

Our suspicions have recently been vindicated by the below cutting of ‘shipping intelligence’ reported in the Maitland Mercury & Hunter River General Advertiser, as reported on the 23 February 1848.

25 cases of absinthe from Tahiti aboard the Sarah Ann, imported into New South Wales on the 17th February 1848.

Needless to say this opens a new chapter of absinthe history to be explored.  What were the main brands consumed in Australia?  Who were the purveyours? What establishments stocked absinthe? How was absinthe framed in context to the temperance movement in Australia?

Stay with us dear reader as we turn back the musty pages of history over the coming months, yea verily, maybe even years as we piece together what should be a veritable jigsaw puzzle of revelatory proportions.

Jonathan Aug 17th 2008 08:42 pm History,News No Comments yet Trackback URI

Comments are closed.