Lean but excellent orange bitters
Notes: One of a continuing series of bitters from a relatively new company in Germany (although truth be told anyone other than Fee, Angostura, Underberg andPeychauds – all in business for over 100 years – is a relative newcomer), Stephan Berg and Alexander Hauck the founders of the company, launched their unique products on the market in Germany in 2006, after making homemade bitters at bars because of the lack of any decent commercial bitters. This, of course, is their orange bitters.
The other bitters in the series are: Bitter Truth Celery Bitters , Bitter Truth Grapefruit Bitters, Bitter Truth Lemon Bitters ,Bitter Truth Xocolatl Bitters, Bitter Truth Jerry Thomas Decanter Bitters, Bitter Truth Old Time Aromatic Bitters, and the new Bitter Truth Creole Bitters.
First Impression: Nicely aromatic and fruity citrus, hints of bitterness around the edges
Appearance: Light yellow / gold, fairly thin and free flowing compared to some bitters. No fake orange / red dye in this one, unlike others I could name
Taste: Bitter calmondon orange, backstopped by cardamom, orris root, fairly intense bust of caraway (think Aquavit) nutmeg and assorted other bitter alkaloids, gentian and burdock also perhaps. Very authentic bitter orange taste with excellent but not overdone bitter component. A more singular orange bitter than some of its competitiors (like Fees or Regans’ No 6).
Drinks: Excellent in a gin martini (yes, for those of you under, say 60, you are supposed to add orange bitters to a gin martini). Works nicely in a Manhattan too if not entirely orthodox
Bottle: Dark brown glass old-style / apothecary bottle cylindrical bottom half, with a slightly bulbous neck which makes for a comfortable grip
Other: One of the few bitters that can be found in a liquor store as opposed to a grocery store ( at least around here )
Final Thoughts: A minimalist, lean, but excellent orange bitters. A must have in a orange bitters as part of your bartenders armamentarium. No caramel, dyes or odd additions to color it or flavor it just a good blend of botanicals. Yes, it costs 4 times as much as the cheap stuff – but take a look at our Bitter Math page to see how meaningless that is.