When you’re stocking your home bar, there are a few must-haves that every bartender needs, like Angostura Bitters. But what exactly is this bitter bar-aid, and how do you use it? Explore this and more questions about bitters when we pour out the deets on Angostura bitters!
🥃 What are Angostura Bitters?
Angostura bitters are a flavoring used to make cocktails sing. The taste of Angostura bitters has delectable notes of warm spices, like cloves, cardamom, and cinnamon, matched with a light fruity undertone. It’s an exciting flavor that pairs very well with many classic spirits, including bourbon, brandy, and rum.
This brightly flavored mixture was born in Angostura, Spain, but today, Angostura bitters are made in Trinidad. Aromatic plants, like gentian root, cinchona bark, cardamom, and more, serve as the spicy base of this delicious type of bitters. This combination results in a pronounced flavor of earthy, warm, and complex spice.
The strong, spicy flavor of Angostura bitters makes it a bracing addition to any cocktail, but that was not their original purpose. This popular cocktail bitters was actually designed to be a medicine. The powerful combination of herbs in this concoction was once used to treat digestive troubles, but today we can all agree that these bitters taste their best in a great cocktail!
🥃 The Classic Old Fashioned
When most people think of Angostura bitters, one drink is the classic Old Fashioned. This sensational bourbon cocktail is always a hit, and it's in part due to the complex flavor of bitters.
Angostura bitters meld with sugar in this amazing drink to make a spicy, sweet base for the luscious, smooth bourbon. It has lovely woodiness, spice, and orange notes that excite every cocktail lover’s palate!
Check out my deliciously simple, classic old-fashioned recipe to learn how to make this crowd-pleasing cocktail easily!
🥃 Beyond the Old Fashioned
The Old Fashioned is a star among sippables but it's far from the only show in town! So many delightful drinks use the sizzling flavor of bitters to spice things up.
If you want to try something a little less ‘Old Fashioned’, check out these other incredible classics that can be made with Angostura bitters:
- Mai Tai
- And More!
🥃 Where to Buy Angostura Bitters
Fortunately for budding bartenders, Angostura bitters are easy to find from many retailers, both online and in-store.
Most major national grocery stores, like Albertsons and Kroger, carry Angostura bitters in their liquor department near the mixers. You can also find this ingredient at liquor stores nationwide. Both small liquor stores and big brands, like Binny’s, carry these bitters.
Or sit back and let the bitters come to you by ordering them online from Amazon or other online retailers.
Bitters bottles come in many sizes, with the 16-ounce size being the most popular. However, bitters are portioned in small dashes, so a bottle may sit on the shelf for a while before it’s fully used. That is why it’s important to check the date on your bitters bottle and toss expired bitters when necessary.
It can also be a good idea to check the expiration date on bottles in the store. Bitters can be an overlooked area for busy store restockers, so it never hurts to check the quality.
🥃 One Last Dash
Angostura bitters kick average cocktails into high gear with their smooth, spicy flavor, but the real magic is up to you! With this essential's delectable warm flavor, you can easily mix up cocktail classics and new inventions. Have fun mixing up delicious drinks, and don’t be afraid to experiment with Angostura Bitters!
⛑️ Food Safety
- Cook to a minimum temperature of 165 °F (74 °C)
- Do not use the same utensils on cooked food, that previously touched raw meat
- Wash hands after touching raw meat
- Don't leave food sitting out at room temperature for extended periods
- Never leave cooking food unattended
- Use oils with high smoking point to avoid harmful compounds
- Always have good ventilation when using a gas stove
For further information, check Safe Food Handling - FDA.