Chartreuse – the other green fairy.

Absinthe has long been known as the ‘green fairy’ due to its’ hallucinogenic effects caused by versions made in the 1800’s. The botanical based liqueur used to be made with wormwood which in large quantities could have caused the odd behavior.

But mainly is was the liqueur’s high alcohol content of 110 to 144 proof that most likely caused the weird behaviors it is legendary for.

But we’re not here today to talk about absinthe. There is another kinder, gentler ‘green fairy’ in the liquor world.

It’s called Chartreuse, it is a herbal liqueur made in France by monks. The recipe is over 400 years old. Made up of a blend of over a hundred different herbs, spices and flowers. The actual recipe is a closely guarded secret.

Sometimes called bartender’s ketchup because of Chartreuse’s ability to marry well with just about every other spirit. It is available in both green and yellow formulas.

The green version is a higher proof and the yellow is a touch sweeter with a honey note to it. Both are excellent choices to have behind your home bar. I highly recommend stocking at least one bottle to elevate your regular line-up of cocktail recipes.

Chartreuse is also an excellent sipper just plain with some ice. You can also add it to your favorite bourbon. Try experimenting by adding it to the usual vodka and soda most people use as their go-to cocktail order.

The two recipes I’ve shared are super simple, so flavorful and beautiful to serve. So enjoy experimenting with new flavors and try this fun little ‘green fairy’ that’s much more mellow and versatile than absinthe.

Chartreuse Daiquiri. Photo by Christina Jordan

Chartreuse Daiquiri                                                            
1 oz. Rhum Agricole
1 oz. Chartreuse
3/4 oz. lime juice
1/2 oz. simple syrup

Add all into a cocktail shaker then add ice. Shake well and strain into a coupe or small glass. Garnish with a lime wedge.




Chartreuse Mule. Photo by Pro-Stock Studio

Chartreuse Mule
2 oz. vodka
1/2 oz. Chartreuse
1/4 oz. simple syrup
3/4 oz. lemon juice
Club Soda

Add vodka, Chartreuse, simple syrup and lemon juice into a cocktail shaker then add ice. Shake well and strain into an ice filled mug or glass. Only fill three quarters of the way up, leave room to top with Club Soda. Garnish with orange peel, peppercorns and lime.