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The Fée Verte Absinthe Forum - The Oldest, Largest, Most Authoritative Absinthe Forum. > Absinthe & Absinthiana > Dr Magnan's Lab
Jaded Prole
Anyone tried DeGroffs Pimento Bitters? I bought a bottle and find them nicely aromatic -- cloves, allspice, anise notes . . . Nice in a Manhattan or even a splash in Rye -- that Ted is one of the makers sparked my interest.

I also tried the new Fee Brothers "Bowkers" with maybe a bit too much cardomom but interesting. I don't know how close they are to the original having never tasted it but like you, I'm attracted to arcane historic flavors and they seemed cheaper than this.

I noticed that the new Angostura I bought was less flavorful and aromatic than the older bottle I had. I found some recipes for Bowkers and Angostura, the latter including:

Gentian, Black peppercorns, Cinnamon, Ginger root, lemon skin ,Cloves and Allspice berries.

The Bowkers recipe calls for Cassia, Calamus, Cardamom, Orange peel and Catechu (a variety of aromatic Acacia).

I was also thinking about Peychoud's. It may have been better in the past but the stuff I have is just red and sticky with little if any flavor on scent. Maybe its just a retro-joke with a cool legend.

Opinions? Anyone here make bitters?
Kirk
I don't know much about them because my bottle is always too old to judge, I use them once and then they sit until I'm afraid to use them again.
Jaded Prole
Admittedly, a small bottle of bitters will last me about 20 years but I am fascinated by flavors and like to make archaic cocktails now and then. I wanted to try the remakes of old bitters and was so disappointed in the weak, crappy version what is passing for Angostura bitters I thought I could do better. I'm sure I can and will.
Grim
I think bitters are just the first foray into something really fantastic where herbs are concerned. If you play with them and also visit old recipes, you're forced to consider some amazing herbs. Some common and uncommon that excite you. I really wish this was the wild West (an experimental hinterland) instead of a regulated, aggressively constrained game of pay to play.
Jaded Prole
That's what I'm thinking. Old apothecary recipes and new (to me) flavors fascinate me. Lots of possibilities and, not being CO, no hoops and regulations.
G&C
I hardly pour any liquor without bitters in the glass.
Kirk
Grimmy!
Jaded Prole
The bitters turned out pretty well -- comparable to Angostura or DeGroffs.
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