As interest in artisanal cocktails continues to boom, consumers are looking beyond garden variety libations in favor of more emboldened and nuanced flavor. The key to unlocking these flavor possibilities? A beloved vintage ingredient—cocktail bitters.
It has experienced a serious resurgence in popularity, not only with bartenders and mixologists, but also among everyday imbibers and in household liquor cabinets.
Over the decade between 2002 and 2012, the bitters sector experienced a solid 3.39 percent market growth, moving from 17.619 million cases to 23,117 million cases, according to alcoholic beverage data and analysis firm IWSR.
And, as overall consumer spending on spirits continues to climb, the demand for diverse, craft-style products will match it, particularly within the millennial market.
Once better known for its uses as a cure-all in colonial pharmacology, bitters has made its way into contemporary mixology as a winning addition to any cocktail.
For decades, standard Angostura aromatic bitters monopolized the shelves as one of the only options consumers could find. But now, a robust medley of creative and unique flavor variations has emerged from craft vendors across the country, and they’re waking up consumers’ taste buds.
Made by infusing a potent alcohol base with a highly concentrated blend of herbs, botanicals and plant extracts, this flavor-grenade delivers a delightful complexity and balance of flavor. Just a dash or two is all that’s needed to elevate a haphazard concoction to a happy hour—or dinner time—favorite.