Absinthe Ritual

Friday & Saturday Night – 6pm to 9pm

If you’re looking for something different for dinner in the Hunter Valley, let us transport you to a bygone era… ‘La Belle Époque’, where Two Fat Blokes Gourmet Kitchen transforms into a smokey, sensual ambience, with waitresses and singers from the Moulin Rouge era.

Give the Green Fairy her wings by experimenting with a variety of French and Swiss Absinthe, along with traditional cocktails and our famous shared plates. Come visit the Two Fat Blokes Gourmet Kitchen at night to see for yourself why the myth of ‘la fee verte’ was discovered, because as they say… the fairy is in the louche.

Where: Two Fat Blokes Gourmet Kitchen.
When: 6pm to 9pm Friday and Saturday Nights.

About Absinthe

Historically referred to as “la fée verte” or the green fairy, absinthe is an anise-flavoured spirit derived from three main herbal ingredients – grand wormwood, green anise and sweet fennel.

Originating in the late 18th century, it rose to prominence in Switzerland and France and was frequently associated with the literary and artistic circles of the Belle Époque (Beautiful Era) in Western Europe from 1871 to 1914. Everyone from Ernest Hemingway and Oscar Wilde to Pablo Picasso and Vincent van Gogh was known to indulge in the highly alcoholic drink with its distinctive green hue.

But the development of absinthe was not welcomed by all, with the spirit banned in the United States and much of Europe by 1915 after being portrayed without evidence as an addictive psychoactive drug and hallucinogen.

A revival of interest in absinthe began in the UK in the 1990’s, with the drink now readily available in many countries across the world, including Australia (although at no time was it illegal to import it to or manufacture it here).

About Our Ritual

Absinthe Ritual - Fri & Sat Nights - Two Fat Blokes

Hunter connoisseurs keen to taste the magic of the green fairy can head out to the Two Fat Blokes Gourmet Kitchen, which hosts a traditional Absinthe Ritual at our Pokolbin premises from 6pm to 9pm on Friday and Saturday nights.

Transforming the restaurant with green lights and a smoky, sensual ambience straight from the 1920’s, complete with saucy singers and in-character waitresses, patrons can select from the extensive range of absinthes from France and Switzerland, which have been crafted to serve as an aperitif before your meal.

The spirits range in alcoholic content and flavours, from the Lemercier Absinthe (45%), which offers a light and easy drink with a fruity apple influence and a medium anise content, through to the Lemercier Amer (72%), a dry and medium to full-bodied spicy absinthe that provides hints of nutmeg and cinnamon flavours along with dried fruits.

Absinthe Ritual - Fri & Sat Nights - Two Fat Blokes

But drinking absinthe is about more than just trying a new flavour – it’s about the ritual.

Drinks are served with a specific set of traditional instructions that include pouring ice cold water over a French ‘A La Perruche’ sugar cube sitting on a special perforated spoon, which is resting on the rim of the glass containing the absinthe.

As the sugar dissolves, it drips through the spoon along with the water, causing the absinthe to slowly begin to change into an opalescent version of its former self.

After the sugar has disappeared from the spoon, patrons must slowly stir the absinthe and add more water, diluting it according to taste and the alcoholic strength of the absinthe until you end up with a ratio from 1:1 and up to 3:1.

Often referred to as the French Method, this ritual is designed to bring out the subtleties of the undiluted spirit from within its botanical essences including anise and fennel, which in turn produce the milky opalescence effect in the liquid known as the louche.

At Two Fat Blokes Gourmet Kitchen, the absinthe ritual is perfectly complemented by a selection from our mouth-watering menu.

Patrons can choose their own combination of dishes or opt for one of the indulgent Absinthe Packages. For $75, the Toulouse-Lautrec offers one glass of absinthe with two sharing plates of your choice, while the Moulin Rouge ($166) includes two glasses of absinthe with two sharing plates and two mains. Step up to a truly gourmet experience with the Edith Paif package for $210, which allows you to savour three glasses of absinthe with breads, two sharing plates and two mains.

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Group Information

What is the minimum number of people you will pick up?

There is no minimum restriction to book so singles and couples can book tours, but there is a minimum number of people needed to run tours effectively. We do our best to make sure every tour runs, which sometimes means shuffling minimum numbers together so tours can operate. We need to group together at least  4 people (minimum number shown on each tour) for it to operate.

Do you take parties like a 40th or 50th?

Yes. A day tour with your friends enjoying drinks and tasty food is one of the most enjoyable but hassle free ways to celebrate a birthday. We take care of the details and let us know if you would like something extra special too!

What size groups can you cater too?

Each tour vehicle contains passengers from multiple bookings until it is filled to the 'maximum guest limit' (shown on each tour). This limit keeps our group small so it's fast and fun with premium access. A tour will operate when a minimum of four seats are booked. If there are only four seats booked, great you will have the tour all to yourselves in one of our smaller vehicles. The more a tour fills up, the bigger the vehicle we use until our maximum guest limit for that tour is reached. If you would like a completely private tour for two, or, have a larger group than the 'maximum guest limit' please contact us for options. We can cater to larger groups by combining multiple vehicles for any tour.

Transfer Locations

$50 flat rate
$50 flat rate
$15 per person
$50 flat rate
$15 per person
$50 flat rate
$100 flat rate
$50 flat rate
$60 flat rate
$60 flat rate
Not Available

Sydney Transfers

  • SYDNEY direct transfers are not available.
  • To arrive from Sydney customers can catch the train between ‘Sydney-Newcastle-Maitland’ and request a Two Fat Blokes pick-up/drop-off at ‘Maitland’.

Transfer Fee Information

  • Flat rate is a single price for pick-up/drop-off at that location whether it’s two people or a full group of people.
  • Minimum 2 person pickup is required to operate the pickup service to fee based locations.
  • Fees are in addition to your tour booking and will be collected by your guide at time of pick-up. Please pay these fees by cash, ATM’s will be available on the tour.
Visit Wineries

Discover up to 3 great wineries handpicked for you.

How do you determine which wineries are best for my group?

Because we know the area so well and try to deliver the best experiences based on: - Rave reviews from previous tour groups - Boutique, non-touristy locations - Excellent wines, moderately priced - Warm & friendly service - Perks available (cellar tours, barrel-tasting, wine-maker available, etc.)

Which wineries do we visit?

There is no set schedule of wineries. Our tour guides will take advantage of the best winery experiences available on that day, including special events, to make sure you get the most value from your itinerary, have an enjoyable day and maximise your taste time of the Hunter Valley.