Small batch bitters are making their mark on the cocktail scene. In cities like New York, Boston and San Francisco, cocktail enthusiasts and bartenders are rediscovering long lost recipes and coming up with new signature flavors which help create the palate of the New American Cocktail. While living in San Francisco in early 2007, Avery and Janet Glasser used high proof spirit and a variety of herbs, peels and spices to create an extract of a traditional Mexican cooking sauce. This extract became the prototype recipe for the Xocolatl Mole Bitters. The summer of 2010 marked a dramatic rebirth for Bittermens: winding down previous licensing agreements, striking new partnerships, developing new products and most importantly, leasing a commercial kitchen. All Bittermens products are now being made by hand at our Brooklyn facility using primarily organic ingredients. Bittermens also consults with bars and restaurants looking to develop signature in-house formulations.
Scarborough is a unique flavor blend, focusing on botanicals traditionally found in more culinary applications but are now working their way into the cocktail world. We love savory drinks – it doesn’t matter if we’re sipping on an aquavit gimlet, a tequila old fashioned, a sherry cobbler, or just a vermouth on the rocks, it’s the perfect foil to sweet or citrusy drinks during the summer. Bittermens Scarborough Savory Herbal Bitters were born out of our love of savory drinks, especially drinks with vermouth. What we figured out years ago is that when you take all of the bells and whistles out of dry vermouth, the core flavors are pretty darned close to Herbes de Provence. Thanks to Simon and Garfunkel, we also know that if you’re heading to Scarborough Fair, there’s going to be some parsley, sage, rosemary and thyme involved. Well, rosemary and thyme are already in most Herbes de Provence blends – and the woodsy sage notes and bright-yet-bitter parsley meshes with them perfectly. To this, we add a little cinchona bark for classic bitterness as well as tartaric acid, the acid found in wine. How do you use these bitters? Lots of ways! Verde Mary: green tomato and tomatillo juice, tequila (or vodka) and the Scarborough bitters. Tailored Canadian Tuxedo: 1.5 oz Canadian Club, 1 oz Amontillado Sherry, 1/4 oz Demarara Syrup, 7 drops Scarborough Bitters, Lemon Twist. (Thomas Thompson, Barrel Proof, New Orleans) Rose Spritz: Dry Rose, soda water, 10 drops of Scarborough Bitters, on the rocks in a large wine glass, rosemary garnish. Improved Bamboo: 1.5 oz Amontillado Sherry, 1.5 oz Dry Vermouth, 10 drops Bittermens Orange Cream Citrate, 5 drops of Scarborough Bitters, lemon twist. Stirred and served in a coupe. It’s also amazing in a glass of ice water or soda water for a non-alcoholic refresher, and it really wakes up a gin and tonic!