The Artemisia Distillery relies on the high quality of plants grown in the surrounding Val-de-Travers region to produce absinthes with a subtle sweet bitterness. Claude-Alain Bugnon is delighted that he has finally left the "underground." To develop his fairies, he used a 1935 recipe and his absinthes are proof to his craftsmanship and passion.
Market research? Business plans? Artemisia doesn’t need them! From the day it was established in 2004, the distillery's driving force has been its passion for absinthe. The original absinthe, of course! Absinthe from the famous Val-de-Travers region – the only one with a noble bitterness, thanks to plants from the region like the grande and petite absinthe, hyssop and balm. These are the plants that from the 19th century to the current day have created the world-class reputation of Switzerland’s "Absinthe."
Based on a 1935 recipe, La Clandestine (winner of Gold Medals in the Distiswiss competition in September 2005 and at the Forum Romand for Spirits in Spring 2006) was one of the first absinthes to be distilled in the Val-de-Travers since the ban on absinthe was lifted on the March 1st, 2005. A few months later La Capricieuse, a stronger version of La Clandestine, saw the light of day, followed by a special version produced mainly for the French market and awarded the Golden Spoon at the Pontarlier Absinthiades in 2005 and 2006. We are driven by the desire to take the Artemisia fairy worldwide, and we will continue to develop new products for today's absinthe drinkers.
Exporting 40% of our production (to USA, Germany, France and Japan), Artemisia has found its niche among the 250 brands of the European market. In truth while most of these brands bear the absinthe name, many of them can scarcely be seen as real absinthe and do not share the philosophy of my distillery: respect for absinthe and real craftsmanship in every step of production, from the weighing of the plants, to the bottling and ongoing quality control.
Each distillation is made with the utmost care, using the direct heat method so that the vapours seep through all of the plants. Each distillation is bottled separately and then listed along with all the production details, such as the exact mixing ratio of the plants used. The aim of this procedure is to ensure that La Clandestine and La Capricieuse continue to rank among the best brands of the Val-de-Travers.