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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!

Dr Adam Elmegirab's Boker's Bitters

10cl, 31.5%
Dr. Adam Elmegirab

These were created in 1828 by John G Boker. They became very popular in New York and they were synonymous with the "golden age" of cocktail making. They were used throughout Jerry Thomas's book "How…  More info

Dr Adam Elmegirab's Boker's Bitters
2
$14.16

Bitter Bastards Kola Bitters 10cl

10cl, 50%
Bitter Bastards

Some rather delicious bitters from the Bitter Bastards range, with the exotic Kola nut! The whole range is made with standardisation of flavour (meaning you should be able to standardise the…  More info

Bitter Bastards Kola Bitters 10cl
$19.84

Bitter Bastards Gentian Bitters 10cl

10cl, 40%
Bitter Bastards

While you may often find gentian being used as a bittering agent alongside other ingredients, this bitters gentian centre stage! This is a 10cl bottle of Bitter Bastards Gentian Bitters, made using…  More info

Bitter Bastards Gentian Bitters 10cl
$18.51

The Bitter Truth Tonic Bitters

20cl, 43%
The Bitter Truth

Make your Gin & Tonic more Gin & Tonic-y with the Bitter Truth Tonic Bitters, which blends together notes of grapefruit, lime, Seville Orange and Sicilian lemon along with juniper, orris root and…  More info

The Bitter Truth Tonic Bitters
$19.57

Fee Brothers - Cardamon Bitters (Boker's Style)

15cl, 8.4%
Fee Brothers

Another addition to a bartender's arsenal from Fee Brothers, they've only gone and made some Cardamom Bitters, inspired by a classic style of bitters which date back to the 1800s. Plenty spicy, with…  More info

Fee Brothers - Cardamon Bitters (Boker's Style)
$16.61

Dr Adam Elmegirab's Teapot Bitters

10cl, 38%
Dr. Adam Elmegirab

The Teapot Bitters were created in early 2012 when Dr. Adam Elmegirab felt inspired by the medicinal uses of tea and bitters. So he decided to fuse the two together into these delicious tea-flavoured…  More info

Dr Adam Elmegirab's Teapot Bitters
1
$13.27

Hobo Mediterranean Bitters

10cl, 40%
Wayfinder's Distillery

Mediterranean Bitters from the chaps who make Wayfinder Gin. A few drops of these will give your cocktails a burst of intriguing exotic spice and an enjoyable bitterness.  More info

Hobo Mediterranean Bitters
$13.16

Bob’s Peppermint Bitters

10cl, 30%
Bob's Bitters

Intensely refreshing and subtly spicy Peppermint Bitters from the Bob's Bitters selection. We reckon these will work well in gin cocktails, but might also make for a good ingredient in cooking and…  More info

Bob’s Peppermint Bitters
$16.13

Bob’s Lavender Bitters

10cl, 33.2%
Bob's Bitters

These are the Lavender Bitters from Bob's Bitters collection. Focussing on single botanicals rather than mixtures of ingredients, these allow for bartenders to craft the flavours of their cocktails…  More info

Bob’s Lavender Bitters
$16.13

Scrappy's Orange Bitters

15cl, 43.9%
Scrappy's Bitters

Classically-styled Orange Bitters here from Scrappy's Bitters, made with fresh bitter peels alongside select herbs and spices - great in whisky cocktails.  More info

Scrappy's Orange Bitters
$24.07

Bitter Bastards Cocoa Bitters 10cl

10cl, 40%
Bitter Bastards

These Cocoa Bitters from the Bitter Bastards range won't make your drinks taste like you've been slapped in the face with one of those hilariously oversized 1kg chocolate bars which were so popular…  More info

Bitter Bastards Cocoa Bitters 10cl
$18.51

Bitter Bastards Coffee Bitters

5cl, 40%
Bitter Bastards

Made with the finest roasted arabica coffee beans, these exceptional bitters will give a hit of Columbia's finest to your cocktail creations! Like the rest of the extensive Bitter Bastards range,…  More info

Bitter Bastards Coffee Bitters
$13.20

Dr Adam Elmegirab's Aphrodite Bitters

10cl, 38%
Dr. Adam Elmegirab

Named for the Greek goddess of love, Aphrodite Bitters are made with numerous ingredients which have alleged aphrodisiacal properties. These include Chocolate, Cocoa nibs, Ginger root, Red Chilli,…  More info

Dr Adam Elmegirab's Aphrodite Bitters
1
$14.16

Dashfire Old Fashioned Aromatic Bitters

10cl, 40%
Dashfire

This release from Dashfire honours the traditional Old Fashioned with tasty blend of herbs, spices, roots, and bittering agents. Handcrafted in small batches in St. Paul, Minnesota, these reliably…  More info

Dashfire Old Fashioned Aromatic Bitters
$16.57

Bob’s Grapefruit Bitters

10cl, 32.7%
Bob's Bitters

Single botanical bitters from Bob's extensive range - grapefruit ones in this instance. As all good mixologists know 'bitters' shouldn't be treated as a single uniform ingredient any more than…  More info

Bob’s Grapefruit Bitters
$16.13

Bob’s Abbotts Bitters

10cl, 41.8%
Bob's Bitters

Back in the day, any barkeep worth their salt would have some Abbotts Bitters in their arsenal. They went out of style during the 1950s and came perilously close to being lost in the ravages of time,…  More info

Bob’s Abbotts Bitters
$17.93

Bitter Bastards Liquorice Bitters 10cl

10cl, 49.5%
Bitter Bastards

Add some richly herbaceous hints of liquorice root to your cocktails with these Bitter Bastards Liquorice Bitters! Produced using rapid-maceration techniques to avoid any unsightly flavours and…  More info

Bitter Bastards Liquorice Bitters 10cl
$19.84

The Bitter Truth Lemon Bitters

20cl, 39%
The Bitter Truth

These Lemon Bitters from The Bitter Truth were the first of their kind on the market. Great zingy flavour, works wonders in a Martini or a Gin and Tonic.  More info

The Bitter Truth Lemon Bitters
$18.92

Bitter Bastards Vanilla Bitters

5cl, 40%
Bitter Bastards

Making some cocktails, are you? Looking to boost the vanilla notes and give it a helping of enjoyable bitterness of your cocktails, yeah? You're going to want some Bitter Bastards Vanilla Bitters,…  More info

Bitter Bastards Vanilla Bitters
$13.20

Droplets Fresh Ginger

5cl, 0%
Droplets

Javier de las Muelas' Droplets provide a way of adding consistent quantities of fresh ginger to drinks and food. They're made without alcohol from natural ingredients.  More info

Droplets Fresh Ginger
$24.69

The Bitter Truth Old Time Aromatic Bitters

20cl, 39%
The Bitter Truth

Old Time Aromatic Bitters are some astonishing bitters from the Bitter Truth. These work brilliantly in whisky and rum cocktails and add superb, spicy complexity.  More info

The Bitter Truth Old Time Aromatic Bitters
$18.92

Dashfire Mole Bitters

5cl, 38%
Dashfire

Handcrafted in small batches in St. Paul, Minnesota, this Dashfire Mole Bitters is absolutely ideal as a compliment for Tequila and mezcal cocktails, but's that not all it will taste great with. Why…  More info

Dashfire Mole Bitters
$16.57

Dashfire Orange Bitters

10cl, 46%
Dashfire

Not to be confused with the excellent Dashfire Vintage Orange & Bourbon Barrel Aged Bitters, this is the Dashfire attempt at one of the classic and original bitters: orange. From creator Lee Egbert,…  More info

Dashfire Orange Bitters
$17.71

Miracle Mile Redeye Bitters

12cl, 45%
Miracle Mile Bitters

The Miracle Mile Bitters range was created by Louis Anderman out in LA - you know, where the Miracle Mile actually is. The Miracle Mile Redeye Bitters are rather interesting indeed, which have been…  More info

Miracle Mile Redeye Bitters
$32.04

Bitter Bastards Juniper Bitters

5cl, 40%
Bitter Bastards

The Bitter Bastards Juniper Bitters are made with rapid-maceration and centrifugal extraction in order to preserve the maximum amount of gorgeous, fresh flavours from the botanical. Also, centrifuges…  More info

Bitter Bastards Juniper Bitters
1
$13.20

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