Saturday, March 22, 2008

What does Paul Hutchison have against Absinthe?

For the past week I've monitoring an intriguing set of Parliamentary written questions from National's Dr Paul Hutchison to the Minister of Health, about drinks containing absinthe and their possible side effects.

1790: Is he aware of any drinks on the market that contain Absinthe; if so what is the Absinthe content?

1791: Is he aware of any side effects that may occur from consuming drinks containing Absinthe?

1792: Is he aware of any drinks on the market that contain Absinthe at 8% content?

As someone who has regular appointments with the Green Faerie, I can inform Dr Hutchison that the answers to his questions are "many", "the same as for any other alcoholic drink", and "no. Try 80%". I'm also curious as to why he is interested. Presumably his reference to 8% means he's concerned about Absinthe alcopops, but while these are a barbarity (absinthe is properly consumed after being diluted with iced water dribbled through a suger cube), I don't see why they should be treated any differently from any other alcoholic beverage. 8% is a lower alcohol content than your average glass of wine, and we don't have any problem with people drinking that...