About Absinthe Mansinthe
Absinthe was invented at the end of the 18th century, in Val-de-Travers in the Swiss province of Jura. It is traditionally made of vermouth, anis seed, fennel and a range of other herbs. In the mid 19th century, absinthe was the drink of the Bohemia. Artists such as Ernest Hemingway, Edgar Allan Poe, Oscar Wilde, Charles Baudelaire, Paul Gauguin, Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec and Vincent van Gogh regarded "the green fairy" as a source of inspiration.
The same is true for Marilyn Manson, who has been known as an absinthe lover for many years. In July 2007, together with Markus Lion from lion-spirits.de and multiple award-winning Swiss speciality distillery Matter-Luginbühl AG, he launched his own absinthe, which is called "Mansinthe".
Manson intensely involved in the development
Two years after the initial idea to do develop an absinthe together with Marilyn Manson, it was finished, Markus Lion looks back: "Manson was intensely involved in the development, constantly tasting the samples, giving his opinion and providing suggestions for changes. When he was completely satisfied with a prototype, the final implementation was swift." The artist, whose real name is Brian Hugh Warner, presented his "Mansinthe" at the private viewing of his exhibition in Galerie Schenk in Cologne, on 27th June 2007.
Absinthe Mansinthe was launched as a project by Oliver Matter, Markus Lion and Marilyn Manson in the summer of 2005 and developed together. Prototypes were sent from Switzerland to Hollywood and then discussed and further developed together. This laborious process took two years.
Absinthe Mansinthe was released for a vernissage of Manson's works in Cologne in the summer of 2007. A pre-series limited to 80 bottles with a differently laid out label was presented there.
Absinthe Mansinthe is produced by one of the best absinthe manufacturers in the world in the small Swiss town of Kallnach. Only herbs of the best quality are used. No artificial flavors, colorings or sugar are used in production. Absinthe Mansinthe is produced the way absinthe was produced in the 19th century.
How did Absinthe Mansinthe come about?
Markus Lion tells how the production of Absinthe Mansinthe with Marilyn Manson came about:
It must have been around 2003, when I got more and more orders from the USA, when I became aware of a customer who kept ordering large quantities of absinthe from me. One day, when another order like this came in and I was happy about the sales, I read the customer's comment - I'm happy to get in touch if I have any questions. My curiosity was aroused because the address "Sunset Boulevard, Hollywood" was promising. I called the number and chatted for a while with the man on the other end of the line. He was extremely nice and very satisfied with the way the orders were processed. Now I was interested in who this absinthe was for and so I was informed who I was dealing with: the management of Marilyn Manson - wow!
Just fractions of a second after I found out who I was dealing with, the idea of an exclusive absinthe for the shock rocker shot through my head. Some time later I had the opportunity to personally discuss this idea with Manson. He invited me to a concert in Basel after we chatted for a while backstage about music, art, architecture and absinthe. Turns out we actually have a few mutual acquaintances. Manson is believed to have stayed with Peter Christopherson while he was working with Trent Reznor in LA. Also H.R. Giger had already paid his respects to Manson in Zurich.
Since Manson is only a year younger than me, we had some overlapping tastes musically as well. So the opportunity was good to ask him if he could imagine developing his own absinthe. The idea was a hit - Manson was very impressed. I was aware that this does not necessarily mean that this idea will be realized.
As an absinthe lover, Mansom naturally wanted to help shape and develop the taste of his absinthe. For the production, I suggested working with Oliver Matter in Switzerland, as I had already completed a number of projects with the traditional distillery in Kallnach.
So after meeting Marilyn Manson in Basel, I set out to tell Oliver Matter about the new project. He was enthusiastic about the idea and immediately set to work developing some prototypes, which were sent to Manson in Hollywood. Manson tasted the different prototypes and phoned me to tell me which samples he liked and how he wanted them to be further developed to suit his tastes. Based on this, further prototypes were developed and sent back to Hollywood.
As you can imagine, communication was not easy and often took several months. So it is not surprising that it took more than two years from the first meeting to the presentation of the finished product in Cologne in 2007.
Marilyn Manson just opened a vernissage of his works in Cologne and brought bottles of the prototype to the press conference, which he placed in front of him where they were clearly visible to the press.
When Manson presented his absinthe to the press for the first time, there was only a pre-production of 80 bottles, which still had a label with a different layout.
The label that adorns Absinthe Mansinthe is a work by Marilyn Manson, which he painted with watercolor and absinthe.