Traditional bitters contain a complex combination of many spices and botanicals aimed to be a main ingredient in the cocktail. While, indeed, this does inevitably had an intricate mixture of flavors, it limits the mixologists flexibility with the drink. Once added, there’s no turning back.
Seeing this drawback, The Dorchester Bar approached the now established Bob’s Bitters back in 2005 in hopes they could launch a line of bitters for the Dorchester’s freshly refurbished bar and menu. The one specification was that these bitters had to put the final touches on a “gin experience”. The idea to make single flavored bitters was particularly appealing because it allowed the mixologist to have a more culinary prospective in that they had the freedom to mix the flavors they felt best enhanced the gin of choice.
Bob’s Bitters took it one step further and recreated the original Abbott’s Bitters—the bitter used in the original Manhattan cocktail. After procuring an original bottle of Abbots and extensive research, Bob’s Bitters had a close replicate with an initial profile base of fifteen ingredients with a further fifteen added along the way to increase the complexity.
Whether you prefer to whip up your own concoction of individually chosen bitter flavors or you want to give their Abbots clone a try, your cocktail experience will forever be changed thanks to Bob’s Bitters.
Bob’s Bitters Flavour Profiles
The bespoke Bob’s Bitters range is made using natural, fresh ingredients with the finest quality spirit.
Abbotts – It is said Abbotts was the original bitters used for the Manhattan and was re- formulated with the help of Jake Burger of Portobello Star, London. An intriguing mix of barks, herbs, roots and spices that come alive in the mouth, very aromatic, complex and well- rounded. Barrelled for 6 months in white American oak.
Cardamon – The robust aroma of cardamon combines well with underlying hints of lemon and eucalyptus and a trace of sweetness offset by a sharp bitterness.
Chocolate – Strong cacao aroma’s with hints of mocha and malt. The palate is naturally dark chocolate with espresso coffee notes and a barky, bitter finish.
Coriander – Fresh coriander with warm nutty undertones and hints of lemon zest. The spice comes through sharply with a slight hint of sweetness with a bitter caramel finish. This is one of the core bitters used in The Dorchester Gin Experience.
Ginger – Warm spicy ginger tang with peppery undertones notes. Fresh caramelised ginger followed by a natural bitter finish.
Grapefruit – A clean, crisp, natural grapefruit taste, slightly sour with a sharp bitter edge. Initially created for Guiliano Morandin at the Dorchester Bar, the Grapefruit Bitters are used in his Perfect Ten, a Martini based around Tanqueray Ten Gin.
Lavender – A fresh sweet floral flavour with lemon citrus aroma and traces of Rosemary wood. It sits well in any number of drinks using Gin, Vodka and Tequila.
Liquorice – A sweet woody earthy flavour with a touch of anise and fennel. Slight barky notes with a bittersweet finish. Initially created for Ago Perrone for use in cocktails using the newly reformulated Galliano L’Authentico.
Orange & Mandarin – Aromas of freshly scratched mandarin zest with the bittersweet flavour of caramelised Seville oranges and a trace of warming spice. A bitter zest finish that lingers.
Peppermint – Well-defined peppermint bouquet with a distinctive menthol flavour. Citrus hints and a slightly bitter woody finish. Stefano Cossio used this bitter in his cocktail, Pomme Allure, which was the winner of the Calvados World Cup 2009.
Vanilla – Naturally distinctive perfume of Tahitian vanilla pods with subtle fragrant hints of tobacco and cacao with a toffee and cream finish.