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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!

Best Seller

Van Wees Authentique Angostura Bitters

4cl, 43%
A. van Wees de Ooievaar

Dutch bitters from a recipe developed during the times of the Vereenigde Oostindische Compagnie, or Dutch East India Company. Apparently they were often added to flavour geneva.  More info

Van Wees Authentique Angostura Bitters
$12.14

The Japanese Bitters - Umami

10cl, 27%
The Japanese Bitters

Umami is one of the five basic tastes, along with sweet, salty and all of that, and is generally described as savoury. For this expression from The Japanese Bitters range, Japanese botanicals,…  More info

The Japanese Bitters - Umami
$42.01
Best Seller

The Japanese Bitters - Shiso

10cl, 28%
The Japanese Bitters

The Japanese Bitters has gone and bottled up the flavour of shiso in these wonderful bitters! Shiso is the common name for the Asian culinary seed and plant of Perilla, belonging to the mint family,…  More info

The Japanese Bitters - Shiso
$36.16

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
$15.98

The Bitter Truth Spiced Chocolate Bitters

20cl, 44%
The Bitter Truth

Fantastic chocolate bitters from Germany courtesy of The Bitter Truth. Try adding a dash into a cocktail that uses a rich whisky for some tremendous added depth.  More info

The Bitter Truth Spiced Chocolate Bitters
$15.74

The Bitter Truth Peach Bitters

20cl, 39%
The Bitter Truth

Produced in Germany by The Bitter Truth, these delicious bitters are flavoured with peach. The result is the perfect addition to a variety of fruity cocktails.  More info

The Bitter Truth Peach Bitters
1
$15.65

The Bitter Truth Orange Bitters

20cl, 39%
The Bitter Truth

Perfectly crafted orange bitters, these Orange Bitters from Bitter Truth are essential in a good Old Fashioned Cocktail. Loads of zesty, spicy flavour!  More info

The Bitter Truth Orange Bitters
$15.67

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
$15.63

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
$15.63

The Bitter Truth Jerry Thomas' Own Decanter Bitters (30%)

20cl, 30%
The Bitter Truth

A new higher ABV version of the Bitter Truth's Jerry Thomas Bitters, based on those made by the legendary bartender and professor they're named after. Perfect for a Manhattan or an Old Fashioned.  More info

The Bitter Truth Jerry Thomas' Own Decanter Bitters (30%)
2
$16.89

The Bitter Truth Grapefruit Bitters

20cl, 44%
The Bitter Truth

These Grapefruit Bitters are excellent in drinks made with gin or other clear spirits. These are great in summertime favourites like a Daiquiri or a Gin and Tonic.  More info

The Bitter Truth Grapefruit Bitters
$23.18

The Bitter Truth Drops & Dashes - Wood

10cl, 42%
The Bitter Truth

Released as part of the Drops & Dashes range from The Bitter Truth (unveiled in celebration of their 10th anniversary), these bitters are perfect for accentuating the rich wood-y notes of whisky,…  More info

The Bitter Truth Drops & Dashes - Wood
$13.32

The Bitter Truth Drops & Dashes - Roots

10cl, 42%
The Bitter Truth

A rich, aromatic expression from The Bitter Truth's Drops & Dashes range, launched in 2016 in celebration of their 10th anniversary. Delicious stuff, and very well presented too.  More info

The Bitter Truth Drops & Dashes - Roots
$15.15

The Bitter Truth Drops & Dashes - Nut

10cl, 42%
The Bitter Truth

The Bitter Truth celebrated their 10th anniversary in 2016, and what better way to celebrate than to release a new range of bitters! The Drops & Dashes range is that celebratory bundle of bitters -…  More info

The Bitter Truth Drops & Dashes - Nut
$14.60

The Bitter Truth Drops & Dashes - Blossom

10cl, 42%
The Bitter Truth

A deliciously floral expression from The Bitter Truth Drops & Dashes range, released in celebration of their 10th anniversary - here's to many more, chaps!  More info

The Bitter Truth Drops & Dashes - Blossom
$15.04

The Bitter Truth Cucumber Bitters

20cl, 39%
The Bitter Truth

Bitter Truth have long created celery bitters and now the top German bitters producers have produced cucumber bitters too! Perfect for Pimms and G&Ts especially.  More info

The Bitter Truth Cucumber Bitters
1
$15.67

The Bitter Truth Creole Bitters

20cl, 39%
The Bitter Truth

Stunning Creole bitters from the Bitter Truth. Creole Bitters reflects the intense, rich style of good from Louisiana, vaguely similar to Cajun food, which sprung from meeting of many cultures…  More info

The Bitter Truth Creole Bitters
$15.67
Best Seller

The Bitter Truth Cocktail Bitters Traveler's Set

10cl, 38.2%
The Bitter Truth

Designed to be carried in your hand luggage so never again will you have to cancel a holiday out of fear of not having a decent selection of cocktail bitters. The Bitter Truth has come up with these…  More info

The Bitter Truth Cocktail Bitters Traveler's Set
1
$18.05

The Bitter Truth Celery Bitters

20cl, 44%
The Bitter Truth

These Celery Bitters from The Bitter Truth are the first celery bitters on the market for a long time. Great in a herbal cocktail, or in anything with a clear spirit based (gin, vodka etc).  More info

The Bitter Truth Celery Bitters
1
$23.18

The Bitter Truth Bogart's Bitters

35cl, 42.1%
The Bitter Truth

The Bitter Truth has created their own interpretation of the bitters called for by name by legendary bartender Jerry Thomas over 150 years ago in The Bar-Tender's Guide. After 10 years of research,…  More info

The Bitter Truth Bogart's Bitters
$35.28

The Bitter Truth Bar Pack

10cl, 40.8%
The Bitter Truth

A stylish set of five Bitter Truth cocktail bitters, presented in 20ml bottles in a tin box. This set includes a 20ml bottle of each of the following - The Bitter Truth Tonic Bitters (43% ABV), The…  More info

The Bitter Truth Bar Pack
$16.15

The Bitter End Chesapeake Bay Bitters

6cl, 45%
The Bitter End

Some marvellous cocktail bitters here from The Bitter End range - their Chesapeake Bay Bitters are packed with great savoury flavours, made with the likes of mustard seed, cayenne pepper, celery…  More info

The Bitter End Chesapeake Bay Bitters
$30.11

Selvatiq Beyond Bitter

50cl, 25%
Selvatiq

An intriguing Italian bitter from the Selvatiq range, featuring ingredients foraged from Valtellina. Powerfully herbaceous and aromatic, this expression is wonderful served simply over ice or with…  More info

Selvatiq Beyond Bitter
$60.31

Scrappy's Orleans Bitters

15cl, 47%
Scrappy's Bitters

The Scrappy's Bitters chaps have tried to evoke the flavours and personality of New Orleans with their Orleans Bitters, using notes of anise, cinnamon, citrus and floral wafts. Sazeracs at the…  More info

Scrappy's Orleans Bitters
$26.86

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
$21.90

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