Génépi or genepy (in French) or genepì (in Italian ) is a liqueur or aperitif, similar in makeup to absinthe; Chartreuse is an augmented form of génépi concocted in the early 18th century. The word is also used to refer to alpine plants of the genus Artemisia (commonly called wormwood) that provide the liqueur's flavor, color and effect.
Capitalized, Genepi can also refer to the region in Franco-Italic Savoy adjacent to the Aosta Valley where the plants grow and where the beverage originated, as well as a mountain, a town, a stream and numerous other features in that region.
Like many European herbal liqueurs, especially those used as digestifs, génépi can be an acquired taste. It is less sweet than many digestifs, and the flavor imparted by the herbs is reminiscent of chamomile or feverfew. It is naturally pale gold in color, but some varieties have a final maceration of the wormwood which yields a light green color. A few commercial products are made bright green through the addition of food coloring.
Because génépi is produced by steeping the aromatic wormwood flower heads in a strong, clear alcohol such as vodka or pure grain alcohol, it cannot be considered an equivalent to Spanish aguardiente, French eau-de-vie or German Branntwein because all of these require their plant ingredients and flavorings be distilled with the alcohol, or, in a few cases, fermented. Further separating it is its added sugar content, which clearly marks it as liqueur rather than spirits.