Absinthe Spoons Become Desired Collectibles

When absinthe was banned in the early 20th century, the paraphernalia associated with what was one of the most popular alcoholic beverages almost disappeared. Absinthiana such as spoons, water fountains, glasses, and posters became the domain of a dedicated few collectors, but the drink’s re-emergence in the early 2000s changed everything.

The instantly-recognisable slotted spoons used to hold sugar cubes above the glasses have become the most desired collectibles in a growing market. The design those most familiar with absinthe and its accoutrements recognise most often is the perforated spoon, but there are actually 6 different types of interest to collectors. Getting a collection started can be a costly affair especially if one wishes to broaden the scope and collect absinthiana. Many collectors began either by saving up a few dollars a month, or by using winnings from mobile pokies NZ.

  1. Perforated Spoons

Shaped something like a miniature shovel or cake slice with several holes in it, the perforated absinthe spoon is the most common. Some manufacturers supply one with each bottle, which is another way of starting a collection, if it is to include modern examples.

They can be found in various designs, from plain and unadorned, to ornate patterns. They usually also sell at lower prices, as they are readily available.

  1. Long Spoons

Much rarer than the first type, long spoons look like teaspoons with a long handle. A flattened, perforated sugar holder is usually found in the middle of the handle.

The bowl or round is unperforated, and used for stirring the drink once water has been poured over the sugar cube to dissolve it.

  1. Grills or Les Rondes

Popular during absinthe’s 19th-century heyday in Switzerland, grills look like small, round barbeque grills. A popular design gave them a longer handle, and two shorter grips.

Many existing examples are rather plain, although they can be found with floral or scallop shell patterns incorporated into the design.

  1. Wormwood Leaf Spoons

One of the most sought-after variants of the original perforated design is the wormwood leaf spoon. The flattened end on which the sugar cubes are placed do not feature simple holes.

Instead, the whole end is given a foliate, almost filigree, design based on the characteristic shape of the leaves of the main ingredient in absinthe, wormwood.

  1. Eiffel Tower Spoons

The other coveted variant of perforated spoons has a flattened part that portrays Paris’ famous Eiffel Tower. Unfortunately for collectors, finding originals can be difficult, as so many old and new copies exist.

The original Eiffel Tower spoons were made for the 1889 Exposition Universelle, which is when the landmark was unveiled to mixed responses from the French capital’s citizens.

  1. Poilu Spoons

The 6th type is known as the Poilu spoon, as they were made during the First World War by French soldiers, known as poilus, in the trenches. These absinthe spoons are popular among collectors of absinthiana as well as military memorabilia.

Like many other trench crafts, most were made from the scraps of bombshells. They are exceedingly rare, and each one features a unique design.

Categories: History