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Where can I get bitters other than the usual Angostura?

gastronomad Jul 31, 2009 12:54 PM

I went to Astor liquors thinking of all places they would, but apparently bitters is considered a food and can't be sold in liquor stores. Any thoughts?

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  1. k
    kathryn RE: gastronomad Jul 31, 2009 12:57 PM

    Most grocery stories will have the usual Angostura or Regan's. Kalustyan's has a much more extensive collection, including Fee Brother's bitters. I've definitely seen grapefruit bitters, rhubarb bitters, orange bitters, etc.

    8 Replies
    1. re: kathryn
      gastronomad RE: kathryn Jul 31, 2009 01:11 PM

      Awesome! Thanks! I live right around the corner from there.

      1. re: gastronomad
        big o RE: gastronomad Jul 31, 2009 01:57 PM

        In addition to the wide range of Fee Brother's bitters, Kalustyan's carries the new Angostura orange bitters, Regan's, and Peychaud's.

        They also have gum arabic for making gomme syrup, pomegranate molasses to turn into grenadine, orange/rose flower waters, and all kinds of other fun stuff.

        1. re: big o
          brettnyc RE: big o Jul 31, 2009 02:06 PM

          Yes Kalustyan's has great bitters/other cocktail related ingredients as mentioned. In addition to the other stuff mentioned, the Fee Bros Whiskey Barrel bitters is great stuff. I wonder if they're stocking the much anticipated Bittermen's Xocolatl Mole bitters, come to think of it.

          1. re: big o
            kathryn RE: big o Jul 31, 2009 02:14 PM

            Yup, and frozen concentrate upstairs (mango, white peach, etc) in the freezer section as well as various kinds of sugars/sugar syrups if you really must have sugar cane syrup as opposed to regular old simple syrup.

            They'd better not have the Bittermen's mole bitters, 'cause I just bought some off the internet!

            1. re: kathryn
              brettnyc RE: kathryn Jul 31, 2009 02:26 PM

              LOL! I'll be strolling by Kalustyans later tonight and will report on the bittermen's situation.

              1. re: kathryn
                brettnyc RE: kathryn Jul 31, 2009 04:28 PM

                Ok, I just checked this out. Fortunately for your internet order, but unfortunately for easy Xocolatl bitters access, Kalustyan's does not currently have it. BUT...I spoke with the manager(?), the guy with the beard, and discussed with him. It sounded like he had not yet heard of this, but I mentioned to him that the Bittermen's Xocolatl and Grapefruit bitters are newly available to retail and very highly regarded, and he seemed intrigued. So maybe if we're lucky he'll order some and new yorkers will have an easy bricks and mortar place to stock up on this stuff, as opposed to needing to do online orders. I encourage other hounds to keep bringing this up to them so Kalustyan's will give Bittermens a go!

                1. re: brettnyc
                  ehoenes RE: brettnyc Aug 14, 2009 01:38 PM

                  Thanks to everyone who has posted for the info. I also wanted to note that Fee Brothers has announce an new Aztec Chocolate bitter. Hopefully that'll be available at Kalustyan's soon.

                  1. re: ehoenes
                    alphacook RE: ehoenes Jan 14, 2010 01:02 PM

                    Just tried the Fee Brothers Aztec Chocolate Bitters and I don't recommend them. I love their other bitters, the whiskey barrel especially, but these are just a terrible thing to add to quality spirits. Unless you're making a shot or using cheap ingredients, I'd steer clear. I think they missed the boat on this one.

        2. b
          BondGuy RE: gastronomad Jan 15, 2010 09:42 AM

          FYI, The Globe and Mail (Toronto) did an interesting story on bitters earlier this week.

          For purists, a cocktail without a dash of bitters would be as incomplete as soup without salt.

          “Bitters are the seasoning, the salt and pepper of a cocktail,” says Seattle-based Canadian bartender Jamie Boudreau. “It brightens up a cocktail, adds complexity and ties all the other ingredients together. If a cocktail is falling flat, nine times out of 10 it has to do with the bitters.”


          1. a
            alysonlaurel RE: gastronomad Jan 15, 2010 05:11 PM

            I read that there's a bitters shortage right now. I can't remember why, but I think it has to do with some kind of civil unrest in the country where Angostura is produced.

            1. k
              kathryn RE: brendag Aug 18, 2010 01:22 PM

              Kalustyan's carries these Fee Brothers bitters:

              Old Fashioned
              Aztec Chocolate
              Blood Orange
              West Indian (Orange)
              Whiskey Barrel Aged

              123 Lexington Ave, New York, NY 10016

              1. r
                rkaene RE: gastronomad Aug 18, 2010 01:18 PM

                Union Square Wine has Peychards( it took me a long time to find it) now I can make a sazerac. I think they had a few other kinds.

                1 Reply
                1. re: rkaene
                  kathryn RE: rkaene Aug 18, 2010 01:23 PM

                  Kalustyan's nearly always has Peychaud's (in addition to Angostura, Angostura Orange, Regan's, Stirrings line, Fee Brothers line, and Urban Moonshine), and sometimes in differently sized bottles as well.


                  123 Lexington Ave, New York, NY 10016

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