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As I get steeped more deeply in vodka and gin, I’m enjoying the lost art of mixology.

Well, it was a lost art. With the advent of Mad Men, things like infusing vodka with herbs/spices and using bitters have made a comeback. I didn’t know that when I asked Marie to get me bitters for Christmas. I asked for them because Kingsley Amis recommended that every drinker carry a bottle of Angostura with him at all times, because it can always be used with gin to “knock together” something passable in a pinch.

I got the Fee Brothers Old Fashioned Aromatic Bitters for Christmas. They’re great. I like them so much that I posted a user review at Amazon:

This is not similar to Angostura. But I think it’s better . . . a lot better. Angostura is much more bitter; this is sweeter. For a middle-aged man who likes beer, I have a sweet tooth, with a particular fondness for cinnamon. This product fits my tastes perfectly. A friend of mine scoffed at me for putting these bitters in my vodka tonic. He then tried it and said, “That’s fantastic. I stand corrected.” Great product.

I guess there are scores (hundreds?) of flavors out there, plus a lot of websites dedicated to bitters (like this one). I have ordered a six-bottle sampler set and will continue to surf the web to increase my bitter knowledge. Expect recommendations and updates as my liver and I navigate these new waters.


  1. C.R