Bitters - Urban Moonshine Citrus
Urban Moonshine Handcrafted Digestif Citrus Bitters
Urban Moonshine, Burlington, Vermont
PROOF: 60 (30%)
PRICE: $10.99 2 oz. (60 ml)
Some noteworthy aspects about these bitters; first and foremost they taste great, but also 100% organic, organic grape based alcohol, organic gum arabic (a higher quality and more traditional bitters ingredient rather than the much more common glycerin).
Obligatory Bitters Rave: 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.
Appearance: Straw colored with some sedimentation , not as oily (from using glycerin base ) compared to some bitters.
First Impression: Orange, gentian, calamus, burdock, some floral citrus notes. Appropriately bitter with nice mixed orange citrus notes and bitters.
Taste: Quite aromatic. Primary tastes are orange , gentian, angelica root, quinine alkali notes buffered by gum arabic. Nice blend of sweet and bitter oranges backed by a melange of bitter herbs. Fennel is also present and plays off the bitters well. Finish is medium to long and very pleasant.
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: Various formats: 10 ml mister (think breath sprayer size) great for spritzing or spraying directly in mouth (try that with your average bitter), also 2 oz with dropper or 8.4 oz with dasher both dark brown glass bottle with attractive paper label orange peel design overlaid.
Other: Nicely done and entirely organic ( no one else can make that claim commercially) . Organic Gum Arabic rather than glycerin , makes for a much better base with less dumbing down of flavor. Also more of an authentic flavor (glycerin was not normally used in early bitters)
Final Thoughts: If you are looking for a orange bitter with a light deft touch to it for a drink this one may fit the bill. Other brands of Orange Bitters include Regans' No. 6 , Angostura-Orange , 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.