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Bittermens’ Boston Bittahs

Bitter Review: Bittermens’ Boston Bittahs  (81/100)
Review by Chip Dykstra (Aka The Rum Howler)

Bittermens’ Boston Bittahs were formulated in the summer of 2008 from a combination of combination of citrus & chamomile. The formulation was originally called “Summer Bitters” but the name was changed to Boston Bittahs later that year as the new flavour combination celebrated both the return of summer and a return to Boston after 14 years.

According to the company website:

It’s citrus, citrus, citrus and more citrus, supported with a heavy dose of chamomile. We think it smells like summer. Try it in your favorite fizz, sour or bright tropical drink. It works extremely well with pisco and scotch as well.

Bittermens’ Boston Bittahs arrive in the small dark blue medicine bottle shown to the left. The eye dropper seal is a nice touch as the eye dropper gives you better control over the amount of bitters you add to you cocktail than the traditional bottle style employed by Angostura and Fees Brothers which must be shaken gently to release the liquid. Many a time I have shaken a bottle of bitters too hard and added more than I meant to. The Eye dropper helps with that problem.

When you add a drop to your tongue the chamomile flavour comes through firmly with citrus peel not far behind. There is also a firm hint of tonic water (quinine) coming through.

I was glad when I discovered that Bittermens recommended Boston Bittahs in fizz style drinks and citrus cocktails as this meshed with my observations. Tall soda filled drinks like Tom Collins and Palomas work well, and shorter citrus based ‘Gimlet‘ style cocktails also demonstrated nice results. I did try an Old-fashioned Cocktail as well but was not enthused.

I would like to note that although I found the bitters worked in those taller servings with soda and shorter servings with lots of citrus, I did not necessarily embrace the results fully. This is because when I mixed cocktails I found the flavour of chamomile could easily upset my serving. As well, I found that the impact of the citrus was easily lost next to that Chamomile flavour. I would have liked the citrus to have more of a role in the final cocktail.

To sum it up, Boston Bittahs is useful in mixed drinks with a citrus base as well as highballs served with soda. You do have to work at things a bit to get the flavour of chamomile to mesh with your cocktail.

My final score is 81/100.

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Suggested Recipe:

Here is a nice recipe for your enjoyment:

Boston Patriot

1/1/2 oz London Dry Gin
1/2 oz Fresh Lime Juice
1/2 oz Fresh Lemon Juice
1/2 oz Sugar Syrup (1:1 ratio)
3 drops Boston Bittahs
Ice
Splash Lemon Lime Soda
Lemon Slice

Pour the first five ingredients into a metal shaker with ice
Shake until the outside of the shaker begins to frost
Strain into a chilled cocktail glass.
Add a splash of Soda
Float a lemon slice on top

Please enjoy my cocktails Responsibly!

Note: If  you are interested in more of my original cocktail recipes, please click this link (Cocktails and Recipes) for more of my mixed drink recipes!

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As always you may (loosely) interpret the scores I provide as follows:

0-50 A concoction which if it doesn’t kill you will make you very ill indeed!
50-59 Not deadly, but not really useful either.
60-69 Lukewarm approval
70-79 Nice enhancement but limited in its usefulness
80-89 Excellent/bold flavour enhancement for a variety of cocktails
90-94 A Must-have addition to your home bar
95+ Turns your cocktail into the Elixir of the Gods!

 

 

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