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Bitters

A rather curious drink, primarily used for adding flavour to cocktails, Bitters are a little like the salt and pepper of the cocktail world (as in the condiment and not the hip hop outfit).

Bitters are made with various bitter herbs, barks and other flavourings, with an alcoholic base (often rum). They are not intended for neat consumption, due to their very (and unsurprisingly) bitter flavour, but when added to an Old-Fashioned cocktail, or a Manhattan, they impart all sorts of complexity, bringing maturity and great depth.

Bitters started life, as did many of our favourite drinks, as a medicine. The famous Angostura bitters were created by Dr Johann Gottlieb Benjamin Siegert as a remedy for sea sickness and stomach ailments. The original recipe was named after the town of Angostura in Venezuela (and not after the bark from the tree of the same name – also named after the town).

Exports started to Trinidad (where the Angostura company is now based) and England. The Royal Navy (which was, at the time, an ardent promoter of some of the more beneficial qualities of alcohol) took to adding a few dashing of Angostura bitters to Gin, a concoction known as “Pink Gin”, which was said to placate tummy woes.

The list of ingredients used to make traditional bitters reads a little like a who’s who of archaic remedies: Angostura bark, cassia, gentian, even quinine (the favourite anti-malarial of the old colonists). Bitters are simply made by macerating a bitter agent (often one or more of the above mentioned barks), and a selection of other herbs and spices in strong spirit.

Did you know?... ...In Trinidad and Tobago, Angostura bitters are often added to coffee – well worth trying!

Bitters

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Angostura Bitters
(20cl, 44.70%)
What would any great cocktail be without a few dashes of Angostura bitters? These legendary bitters were created by Dr Johann Gottlieb Benjamin Siegert, who was Surgeon General in Simon Bolivar's army...  More info
$18.04
Gammel Dansk is a Danish bitters, and the name literally means "Old Danish". It was first created in 1961 and it is flavoured with herbs and spices including star anise, nutmeg, ginger, laurel...  More info
User Rating:  Rating (4.0/5)
$36.73
These are our very own bitters. These are made with fine herbs, spices and fruits including fresh vanilla pods, cinnamon, cloves and two kinds of orange peel.

The ingredients are individually...  More info
User Rating:  Rating (5.0/5)
A bottle of Campari Bitters from the 1970s, made in Italy. Ready for Negronis, Americanos and the Campari Orange.  More info
$154.67
These Old Fashion bitters come at a slightly lower strength than the Fee Brothers' other editions. They are aromatic and spicy and work superbly well in all kinds of classic cocktails including...  More info
$21.59
Our classic Black Truffle bitters are a superb means of adding that rich umami flavour to a range of cocktails and mixed drinks. They are made simply by macerating black truffles in top-quality...  More info
Angostura Bitters 10cl
(10cl, 44.70%)
What would any great cocktail be without a few dashes of Angostura bitters? These legendary bitters were created by Dr Johann Gottlieb Benjamin Siegert, who was Surgeon General in Simon Bolivar's army...  More info
$7.59
Campari 1.5ltr
(150cl, 25%)
The classic Campari bitters in a big bottle, perfect for making Negronis with!  More info
$46.64
Fabulous festive bitters from Difford's, these are flavoured with Frankincense and Myrrh (though not Gold as well, like our Christmas Bitters…). Great for rich, spicy cocktails by the fireplace!...  More info
$13.77
Truly superb bitters from Simon Difford. These, unusually, are specifically designed to bring a-whole-nother dimension of flavour when used in a Margarita! Delicious, a great idea and very handsomely...  More info
$15.89
Beautifully presented, these are stunnning cocktail bitters produced by Simon Difford. They are the first (and only, at the time of writing in late 2011) cocktail bitters aimed specifically for...  More info
$15.89
Classic old-school cocktail bitters from Fee Brothers, this Old Fashion Aromatic bitters work brilliantly well in a Manhattan or a Planter's Punch. Very fragrant and spicy!  More info
$13.61
These are our very own bitters. These are made with fine herbs, spices and fruits including fresh vanilla pods, cinnamon, cloves and two kinds of orange peel.

The ingredients are individually...  More info
Campari - 1970s
(70cl, 25%)
This very rare bottle of Campari Bitter from the 1970s will bring your cocktails to life. Not in the scary Toy Story way, more like the "Bloody hell, this Negroni is fantastic" way.  More info
$193.33
Kola Bitters
(5cl, 75%)
Made using Kola Nut – these superb bitters add depth, tang and astringency to all manner of cocktails.These Single-Varietal bitters are made using High-proof Dark Rum, Kola Nut, and natural bittering...  More info
User Rating:  Rating (4.0/5)
Crystal Bitters
(6cl, 66%)
Our crystal bitters are made from a secret blend of botanicals and bittering ingredients, macerated for several months, then cold-distilled.
It's an intriguing proposition for cocktails, allowing...  More info
Wormwood Bitters
(5cl, 51%)
The key ingredient in Absinthe, Wormwood is perhaps one of the most controversial ingredients of all time.

These Single-Varietal bitters are made using only two ingredients; the spirit (High-proof...  More info
Chipotle Bitters
(5cl, 40%)
Made using the finest smoked Jalapeño Chillies, these superb bitters add both spiciness, and a profound smoky flavour to cocktails of all descriptions.

These Single-Varietal bitters are made using...  More info
Sour Cherry Bitters
(5cl, 75%)
Made with the equivalent of 600g of cherries per litre of spirit, the cherries used in these bitters were freeze-dried prior to maceration to give the maximum possible intensity and flavour.

These...  More info
Cocoa Bitters
(5cl, 40%)
Cocoa, Cacao, Xocolatl, Chucklit - call it what you will…

These Single-Varietal bitters are made using only two ingredients; the spirit (Grain Vodka), cocoa and natural bittering agents.

Cocoa...  More info
Made using the finest grade Frankincense, these bitters add a very unusual, ethereal quality to drinks of all descriptions.

These Single-Varietal bitters are made using only three ingredients; the...  More info
Bitter Bastards cocktail bitters made with Tuber Borchii or 'bianchetto' truffles! Known for their slight garlicky note alongside all the earthy, perfumed goodness you'd expect, these gorgeous...  More info
$32.14
The world's favourite spice, Black pepper adds an amazing depth of flavour and hit of heat to any savoury cocktail.

These Single-Varietal bitters are made using only three ingredients; the spirit...  More info
Ginger Bitters
(5cl, 75%)
Made using ginger root – these superb bitters add a spicy warmth and intensity to all manner of cocktails.These Single-Varietal bitters are made using only three ingredients; the spirit (High-proof...  More info
Juniper Bitters
(5cl, 40%)
Made using the finest Juniper berries, these bitters can be treated almost like a 'Gin Concentrate'.

These Single-Varietal bitters are made using only two ingredients; the spirit (Grain Vodka)...  More info
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