To celebrate their 10th anniversary The Bitter Truth have brought out a new range to their portfolio and BarLifeUK got a sneak preview.
10 years ago the cocktail world was a very different place Gaz Regan stirred his Negroni’s with a spoon, Ali Reynolds was a virgin, Jamie Jones was tall, Lyndon Higginson made drinks and Jake Burger hated gin. To top it all off there were only a couple of different types of bitters on the market.
BarLifeUK have often berated the amount of bitters that are now available. We often leave a bar or cocktail competition in love with a drink but unable to make it back home because we don’t have Arabian Horse Fly Nipple or Dodo Genital Bitters.
If you track back through the story of the resurgence of bitters there are two men that can be blamed for this. Alexander Hauck and Stephan Berg are the culprits, and their photo’s should be permanently attached to the BarLifeUK dartboard. However, the fact is, not only are their range of bitters one of, if not the, best on the market but they are lovely guys to boot.
The friends and ex-bartenders started their company back in 2006 after a visit to the, now defunct, BAR Show in London. It was at the show that they decided to take their experience of making bitters in their own bars back in Germany, plus the inspiration gained from Stephan’s vast collection of historical bitters, and creating The Bitter Truth brand.
They started off with an Orange Bitters and Old Time Aromatic Bitters and have continued to launch products consistently since then giving them a range with consists of (deep breath people): Celery Bitters, Creole Bitters, Jeremy Thomas’ Bitters, Lemon Bitters, Chocolate Bitters, Grapefruit Bitters, Peach Bitters, Tonic Bitters, Cucumber Bitters, Orange Flower Water, Rose Water, Apricot Liqueur, Violet Liqueur, Elderflower Liqueur, Pimento Dram, Golden Falernum, E**X**R Bitter Liqueur and Pink Gin…… phew.
Alex and Stephan have created all of those recipes themselves often using trial and error to get the recipe right in their lab. So it is no surprise to find out they went back to the lab to create something a bit special to mark their anniversary.
Drops & Dashes
Over the companies 10 years it has grown and expanded, much like a growing tree reaching out across the world so that now their bitters are in bars far and wide. As a result the tree was the obvious choice for the inspiration for their celebratory 10th Anniversary product launch – Drops & Dashes.
Presented in some very fancy looking glass dasher decanters (which are designed to be reused once empty) the four flavours on offer are Blossom, Nut, Roots and Wood. As we have come to expect from them they are All Natural so no artificial flavourings or colourings buggering up your lovely drink.
The inspiration for these flavours came from all over the place with the Blossom having the most unusual inspirational beginnings. When we caught up for a drink with Alex he told us how he had been getting his hair washed in a hairdressers (I bet he goes somewhere that gives him a glass of wine too…. we go and see a man called Barry who uses spit as hair gel) and was taken by the smells coming from the shampoo. A quick chat about what was in the bottle and the Blossom flavour profile was taking it’s first step.
So let’s see what Alex and Stephan have to say about their new additions:
Blossom – Pale red-amber like in colour, The Bitter Truth’s Blossom Drops & Dashes showcase a variety of summer blossoms from around the globe ranging from aromatic jasmine, sweet hibiscus, earthy iris and charismatic lavender. Full of fragile fragrances the flower basket is harmonic and delicate with new discoveries in every new sip.
Nut – Dark brown amber in appearance, the flavour of The Bitter Truth’s Nut Drops & Dashes is driven by delicate notes of green black walnuts with hints of muscovado sugar, prunes & raisins in combination with high notes of roasted hazelnuts. Accompanied by aromatics of bitter chocolate and light espresso, the finish delivers gentle notes of cashew nuts and almonds.
Roots – Bittersweet, brown and intensively aromatic, The Bitter Truth’s Roots Drops & Dashes show bold notes of burnt liquorice in combination with smoked & sweet spices and bitter gentian root. Light floral notes of iris roots give support, and supply the balancing high notes to round it off.
Wood – With its red, mahogany amber colour, The Bitter Truth’s Wood Drops & Dashes delivers bone dry aromas of oak wood, Peruvian bark, light spice and fragrant notes of sandalwood. The wood notes are distinctive soft, warm, smooth & creamy, while the aftertaste is full of sweet smoke with a root beer finish.
We were lucky enough to try them when we saw Alex and can tell you they are all superb. Just as importantly they are flavours that immediately get your brain fizzing with ideas on how they can be used in drinks (unlike Mr Fiddlers Mung Bean & Gallbladder Bitters). We haven’t had a chance to try them in drinks yet but were immediately taken with the Roots & Wood flavours in particular.
Don’t take our word for it however because we have, once again, got your back. We have got our hands on the full Drops & Dashes range thanks to our friends, and all round good eggs, at Love Drinks for you to win. Simply fill in the form below.
If you don’t feel lucky, can’t spell your own name or more likely cant wait for a month until we get round to drawing the names out of a hat you can get hold of Love Drinks direct or sample the range yourself on their stand at Imbibe Live in a couple of weeks.
That isn’t all. In another 10 year celebratory move we are teaming up with The Bitter Truth and Love Drinks to run a The Bitter Truth Cocktail Competition. It will be launching on BarLifeUK next week along with the details of the great prize. We might even be telling you about a new flavour of their main bitters range as well. It’s just like Bitter’s Christmas over here at the moment.