Fee Brothers Cranberry Bitters

  • Rating: 5
  • Value: 5
Type: ,
Proof: None (Water Base)
Age: Not Applicable
Price: $4.25 - 4 oz. (118 ml)
Price Range:

More of a seasoning than a proper bitter.

Notes: Fee Brothers has been in business since April 1,1864 in Rochester, New York (home of!). Along with being one of the few remaining manufacturers of bitters, they also are one of the largest bar mixes and supply firms in the U.S. and produce flavorings and syrups for coffee shops, restaurants, etc.

First Impression: Smells like bitter quinine, caramel. Scents of bitter zest of bark also in the background.

Appearance: Clear to translucent, a pulpy white green in color, thick and slightly viscous – reminds me of aloe juice drinks in texture.

Taste: Bitter, slightly glycerin thick with cranberry/cherry and citric acid/orange, think sour candy cranberry, unsweetend cranberry and cinchona bark taste. They seem sto be using their standard bittering agent which tend to taste the same across their flavors. Slightly artificial tail or aftertaste but less than most other efforts and probably will be unnoticed in a drink.

Drinks: Not really sure of how to use this one. Almost all the recipes you find are pre-Prohibition and a trifle odd. Good in a gin martini, if a touch simple. Although we did come up with a dynamite idea with John Pomeroy of a Pisco Sour using this instead of Angistura bitters

Bottle: Simple paper wrapped clear glass bottle, with a screwcap closure. It is distinguished from the other bottles by the dark ( and somewaht flat) cranberry red color of the printing and dark red colored shrinkwrap around the top and neck.

Other: Other varieties of bitters include: Aztec ChocolateCherryCelery,GrapefruitLemonMintOld Fashioned Aromatic (Angostura)(West Indian) OrangePeachPlumRhubarbBlack Walnut , and the Whisky Barrel seriesWhiskey Barrel Aged 1 (2007) , Whiskey Barrel Aged 2 (2008), Whiskey Barrel Aged 3 (2009), Whiskey Barrel Aged 4, (2010),  and Whiskey Barrel Aged 5  (2011)

Final Thoughts: Somewhat of a cranberry bitter and little else An interesting addition to any cocktailian’s bar supplies I suppose but of somewhat limited utility. However it may be a fun item to experiment with – anything you come up with using it is probably a new and unique drink that can show your creativity.  The only other  Cranberry bitters commercially available in U.S., that we know of is from the Sweet Grass Farm  Crew in Maine


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