Dear Absinthe Lovers,
Once again, the weekend went by way too fast!
As in previous years, our team took part in the Fête de l’Absinthe. This Absinthe Festival is held annually in June in Boveresse, a small town in the idyllic Val-de-Travers.
We were very happy to meet up with old friends, and share our common passion with Absinthe lovers, distillers and retailers. Of course there were also some new absinthes to be discovered this year! You may soon be able to find them on our website.
Since it was a long and exciting weekend, I prefer to talk about each day separately:
On this day, we left our office a little bit earlier than usual. In the early afternoon, we made our way to Switzerland.
After our arrival, we reached of course our accommodation in the first instance. Some of us (just as we did last year) decided to spend the night at the Hotel de l’Aigle in Couvet, a nearby town of Boveresse. The others wanted to get the real “Festival Feeling” this year and decided to stay at the campsite in Fleurier, another small nearby town.
After having packed all our belongings, we went together to the distillery of Claude-Alain Bugnon. He invited us for an absinthe drink in his distillery. Bugnon produces, among others, the world famous Absinthe La Clandestine. Additionally, we could try other absinthes from other distilleries. All of them were of the highest quality!
Some of our friends had already arrived to Claude-Alain’s distillery, so we were able to exchange our views on the latest news.
After a glass or two of absinthe, we boarded the bus on a way to a little surprise.
The cheese fondue did not take place at the ‘Chapeau de Napoléon’ this year, but in a small restaurant in the mountains: the ‘Robellaz’. Along the way we made a stopover at a secret absinthe fountain. Deep in the woods of the Val-de-Travers, it reminded us of the time when absinthe was banned and people met in these secret places to maintain the traditional absinthe ritual.
After everyone had become stronger with one or two absinthes (with fresh spring water!), we pursued our journey to the restaurant. High up in the mountains, our next absinthe was waiting for us. The cheese fondue was ready for the off!
The first evening went by too fast and shortly before midnight we were on our way back to Couvet. Some of us extended the evening near the hotel, and this time not with Absinthe, but with Belgian beer (yes, we sometimes enjoy beverages, other than absinthe 😉 ).
Today is the big day. The Absinthe Festival can begin!
After a hearty breakfast we made our way to the festival in Boversse to meet up with the other members of our team who stayed on the campsite. Together we tried several absinthes from the Val-de-Travers, and other regional specialties. Unfortunately, there were fewer distilleries than usual. We hope that more distilleries will take part in the festival next year!
Right next to the place of the Absinthe Festival is an old absinthe dry storage, which is now a permanent exhibition. In the past, distillers dried all the plants used in the production of absinthe in this way. This drying shed is well worth a visit!
In the afternoon we walked the streets in Fleurier and by chance ended up in the kitchen distillery of former clandestine distiller with 40 years’ experience. He was kind enough to share some of his best absinthe with us. It’ll have to stay a secret for now, but we hope to share some of this excellent absinthe with you soon !
In the evening we met our friends again at the Absinthe Festival and ended up in Diane’s garden for a Barbeque. Behind her house she runs a small and very cozy Absinthe Bar, where she offers an impressive selection of Absinthe.
Late in the evening it was a bit cold for us in the garden, so we moved to the “party tent”. Some of us danced on the dancefloor until dawn and enjoyed a few more absinthe drinks.
Unlike in previous years, we did not go back to Freiburg right after breakfast, but instead we paid a visit to Gaudentia Persoz in her distillery. Over a glass of absinthe La Ptite, we were able to exchange views about the latest developments on the Swiss absinthe market. In addition to this, we brought her a small gift: a RUEVERTE Explore Set – Gaudentia Persoz. In return, we were lucky to take a few saucissons with absinthe as supplies for our return journey (Saucisson is a type of traditional dried sausage, which goes very well with absinthe as an aperitif. These particular ones were were really delicious!).
The visit to her distillery was definitely a beautiful way to finish a successful weekend!
We are already looking forward to go to the Fête de l’Absinthe next year!
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