Bitters - Angostura Orange Bitters
Angostura Orange Bitters
Angostura Company Laventille, Trinidad & Tobago, West Indies
PROOF: 56 (28%)
PRICE: $6.99 4 oz (118 ml)
A variation or line extension of one of the best known bitters in the United States. Angostura does not contain angostura bark or any of its compounds, which are banned from import into the U.S. Angostura is the trade name only - much the same as Coca Cola.
Angostura was actually named after the town (now called Cuidad) and not the Angustora bark at all. Also because of the trademarking of the name no one else can call their bitter an "Angostura" even if it actually does contain actual angostura bark.
However, this is their Orange Bitters which has been brought into existence by the flourishing interest in cocktails and mixology and the rebirth of bitters as a cocktail ingredient.
Part of the almost demise of bitters in general is the sloppy research and omission of bitters in many modern cocktail books - many people say "They don't use bitters in drinks anymore so why mention them in a recipe?" which of course just adds to the problem. If a book doesn't mention bitters for at least martinis and manhattans don't buy it! It means the person who wrote it has no idea what they are doing and are perpetuating mediocre books and ignorance. Bitters blend the other ingredients together, add many layers and depths of flavor, and may even help your digestion.
First Impression: Bitter Orange,cloves, cinnamon, some floral citrus notes.
Appearance: Clear, fairly thin and free flowing compared to some bitters.
Taste: Quite aromatic, if not as complex as some. Primary tastes are bitter orange clove, gentian, cinnamon, angelica root, quinine alkali notes buffered by glycerin. Finish is medium-length.
Drinks: In somewhat of a departure from our normal format we also discuss which drinks bitters are used in as so many people are not aware how integral they are to a cocktail. Orange bitters along with Angostura (or aromatic bitters) were used in pretty much the bulk of cocktails from the beginning until recently. A manhattan or a martini is just not right until bitters have been added, and this applies to almost all other cocktails.
Bottle: Dark brown glass bottle with oversized white label with small print all over it which has a orange peel design overlaid on the white. Bright orange screw cap closure.
Other: Best refrigerated and probably has a shelf life - i.e. it could lose flavor and need to be replaced after a certain period?
Final Thoughts: Available but not nearly as much as its parent. While not as complex or interesting as a number of bitters this also conversely means it will not influence a drink as much. If you are looking for a orange bitter with minimal impact on a drink this one may fit the bill. Other brands of Orange Bitters include Regans' No. 6 and Fee Brothers West Indian Orange along with the non alcoholic Stirrings Blood Orange Bitters
Quick-loading website- lots of information and company history, easy-to-navigate.