Yes you have landed in the right place…  you have surfed to… an informal guide to bitters and cocktail culture from  the good people at Morningstar Artisan Foods.

  • We are Brokers of Artisan Foods from around the world along with being a premiere source of Bitters and Mixology Supplies in the country.  There’s all sorts of information on this site about all manner of gourmet foods and as my old beach bum pal Big Charlie Adams used to say… “more recipes than the law allows” for both for food and drink.

  • Some of the Makers actually get their own pages that showcase their collection of recipes. If you like a Dirty Martini now and then you definitely want to check out our Dirty Sue content.  World Class Barman and Brand Ambassador “ET”, Eric Tecosky will show you how to make it the right way.  He’ll also also introduce you to some riffs that use his Premium Olive Juice and Garnishes in other cocktails.

  • Look for the banners like Dale DeGroff’s that will allow you access into the mind of a genius.  

The links below will take you to recipes based on you favorite spirits and our favorite makers of Bitters and other essential ingredients.  There are a number Bar Tips that will help get you over any rough spots in the road.  Plus a listing of shops where you can access the cocktail gear of your dreams.  Enjoy!

I am a big fan of Boker’s Bitters.  It works great in a Kennedy (Aged Rum) Manhattan, the Martinez and the Zabriskie Cocktail.  The Zabriskie is what you could say is an Improved Gin Cocktail…  It is fantastic with both Old Tom and London Dry Gin.

Recipes Link Bar Aperitivo

Anders Erickson is one of my favorite YouTube barmen… This video will show you how to stir and shake cocktails.  Best of all he does a really good demo of how to use a Cup & Can which is way better than the 3 piece or Cobbler shaker…  Click Here to Visit his YouTube Page for more great recipes and advice…

If you’re a Rum Drinker this recipe is a humdinger!

BG Reynolds Syrups give the Home or Professional Barman or Lady a lot of quality tools to make a wide range of cocktails.  For all of you at home I encourage you to experiment with Bitters, Syrups and other Modifiers.  If you see a recipe on line that calls for an Orange Infused Bitters with ingredients you will never find in your local grocery store… just make it with your favorite orange bitters..  Here are some good examples of Riffs you might like!

Recipes Link Bar Aperitivo
Recipes Link Bar Aperitivo

This is a pretty good Riff and it is quit nice with either the Honey or Demerara Syrup.  BG Reynolds Honey Syrup in made with orange blossom honey so it has orange floral note to it.  It blends nicely with the PF Dry Curacao and the MB Negroni Bitters (which is distinct and one of the better orange bitters on the market).

12 years ago well-known LA Barman and Brand Ambassador Eric Tecosky (ET) was in the middle of a late night rush of Dirty Martinis when he ran out of Olive Juice…  While he was draining the juice from a gallon sized jar of olives a light went on in his head and he asked the fellow working with him… “how come no one bottles olive juice?”

Traveling to Andalusia, Spain the world’s top origin for olive and olive oil production he learned how Olives take the journey Farm to Bar.  Soon after Dirty Sue Premium Olive Juice was born.  Today it is the preferred choice of Professional Barmen and Home Mixologists across the country.  Click Here or on any of the Dirty Sue Images to View the Recipes.

Even More Recipes and Perspective From King Cocktail Dale DeGroff

This is a small sampling of what you will find on…
Dale’s Page… Click Here or on Image Above.

If you are into the Classic Old Fashioned try a riff with 2 dashes of Dale’s Pimento Bitters instead of Angostura Bitters.

Dale DeGroff's Pimento Bitters Recipe Guide
 Dale DeGroff's Pimento Bitters Recipe Guide Page 2

If you’d to become a master of cocktails in your own home we suggest shopping with these great retailers.  Not only do the have a great selection of Bitters, Barware and Glassware they can give you good advice.

  • Bar Keeper Los Angeles
    614 N Hoover St, Los Angeles, CA 90004 (323)-669-1675

  • Vena’s Fizz House 345 Fore St.
    Portland, ME 04101  (207) – 747-4901

  • Caduceus Cellars
    158 Main Street Jerome, Arizona 86331 (928)-.639.9463

  • The Austin Shaker
    1199 Airport Blvd, Austin, TX 78702  (512)-524-0754

  • Pogo’s Wine and Spirits
    5360 W Lovers Ln # 200, Dallas, TX 75209  (214)-350-8989

  • The Liquor Store of Jackson Hole
    115 Buffalo Way, Jackson, WY 83001  (307)-733-4466

  • The Boston Shaker
    69 Holland Street Somerville, MA 02144  (617)-718-2999

  • Happy Hour Collection
    530 Euclid Avenue Suite 11 Cleveland, OH 44115  (216) 563-1166

  • Collins & Coupe
    2876 El Cajon Boulevard, Suite #100, San Diego 92104    (619) 727- 4971

  • Cocktail Emporium 3 Locations in Toronto Ontario Canada
    972 Queen St West 647-727-3804
    20 Kensington Ave 647-729-9986
    Union Station 416-964-8535

Shocking as it may sound most liquor stores are stuck in the dark ages when it comes to mixology supplies…  They just want to take the easy way out and there are few liquor stores where you get a good explanation of what is on the shelf.

In terms of Bitters we are not saying that the classics like Angostura, Regan’s and Peychaud’s have lost their place as we use them with regularity ourselves and we recommend them in a variety of cocktails showcased in our recipe pages. However modern barmen have spurred a new interest in cocktail culture.  As a result we think you will find that better makers of Bitters and Syrups have reinvented products lost in Prohibition and created new flavor enhancers that are delightful additions to spirits, cocktails and food.

If you don’t live near one of the great retailers mentioned above Just CLICK HERE or on the Image Below and we’ll be happy to ship you everything you need to make great cocktails at home.  In addition we offer a large variety of gourmet foods and the World’s Best Chocolate from almost 50 Bean to Bar Makers.

Experimentation is the key…  Mister Bitters’ Grapefruit and Agave Bitters is a good example of how you can use bitters to unify or stretch the of the flavor profile and mouthfeel of your favorite cocktails (that don’t call for bitters) in a pleasant direction.  If you enjoy Tequila or Mezcal, Grapefruit and Agave are natural elements to play with.

For Retailers taking a peek at the site this is an example of what some of our Shelf Talkers look like…

Okay so you’re interested but don’t know where to start… 

  • Try Bittermilk Cocktail Compounds… these are Advanced Bar Syrups!  In other words all the hard work has been done for you by total savants.  All you do is add booze and in some recipes club soda.

Bittermilk Cocktail Compounds
  • Perfection is always a good place to start and it will give you a perspective on what Craft Cocktails are all about.

  • If you like you enjoy a more spirits forward cocktail simply cut back on the bittermilk a bit.  Remember a little Bittermilk goes a long way!

  • Click Here or on any of the Bittermilk images in this cluster to view all the Bittermilk recipe videos.

Bittermilk Cocktail Compounds

Bar Tip…  Learn how to use a Cup and Can (2 Piece Shaker).    In the Can the bigger of the 2 shaker halves you add your ingredients and ice then place the cup in the can and give it a good downward tap with the palm of your hand to create a good seal.  Seal should be strong enough that you could hold either one of the ends and the shaker will not come apart.

After you shake your cocktail grip the Can (lower section) with your thumb pinky and ring finger and grip the Cup (upper section) with your index and middle finger.  Two fingers above and below the seal.  Arrange the shaker so that apex V created by the connection of the Cup and Can is facing in the direction or your opposite hand. Then give connection a good rap with the heel of your hand to separate the halves. Use a Hawthorne or Julep strainer to strain and you are in business.

Once you get the routine down it is  quicker, easier and more secure than using a 3 piece shaker.

Angostura Aromatic Bitters, Peychaud’s Bitters and Regan’s Orange Bitters No. 6 are known as the Holy Trinity. 

They are all excellent Bitters, referenced in hundreds of recipes and the cornerstone of Bitters in Cocktail Culture.

Pre-Prohibition there were lots of Honest John’s.  Most of it was for bitters purported medicinal qualities.  Prohibition basically put them out of business. Over the last 10 years the renewed interest in cocktail culture has inspired new makers to create their own signature bitters and recreate legendary cocktail bitters lost in prohibition.

We recommend experimenting with different bitters that as a matter of personal taste you may like better than the Holy Trinity in some of your favorite cocktails and mocktails.

Good Examples are substituting Dale DeGroff’s Pimento Bitters or Bittercube Bolivar Bitters or Mister Bitters Fig and Cinnamon Bitters in an Old Fashioned.  They are all quite different than one made with Angostura and a nice change of pace.

The Creation of Angostura Aromatic Bitters dates back to just after the Napoleonic Wars and was originally used for it medicinal properties. Angostura is made with over 40 ingredients and is synonymous with several classic cocktails… the Old Fashioned, Manhattan, Daiquiri, plus a slew of Tiki drinks.

Most cocktails only use a couple dashes of Angostura, but now bartenders are playing with recipes that use much heftier portions.

The Angostura or Trinidad Sour holds an incredible 1-1 1/2 ounces of Angostura bitters which means Angostura is the only boozy ingredient in the mix.  It is also delicious straight up as a digestif!

Peychaud’s Aromatic Bitters recipe originated in Saint-Domingue and arrived in New Orleans in 1796.  Peychaud’s is licorice forward. It is also unique among aromatic bitters for its tart and fruity flavors rhubarb and the cherry candy, some spice, clove, saffron and orange zest before a long bitter gentian finish.

Try 5-6 dashes of Peychaud’s  added to 3 oz. of your favorite London Dry Gin.  It is called Pink Gin and is a great change of pace to a Dry Martini!  Try 5-6 dashes of Peychaud’s Bitters in soda water as a refreshing tonic.

Regans’ Orange Bitters #6  from cocktail expert Gary Regans is made with orange peel, cardamom, caraway, and coriander from a recipe in Charles H Baker, Jr’s ‘The Gentleman’s Companion.  Gentian, cinchona, and quassia added to round things out. It is alcohol base, made in New Orleans.

In 1990 Orange bitters were hard to find so Regans is the original bitters of the new wave of makers and a staple of Barmen around the country.

Try Regans’ in a Martinez… 1 1/2 oz. gin…1 1/2 oz. sweet vermouth… 1/4 oz. Luxardo maraschino liqueur… 2 dashes Regan’s orange bitters…  an Orange slice for garnish… it is the original Martini

House of Malpighi Balsamic Vinegar

Balsamic Vinegar can make for an interesting Cocktail ingredient.  We recommend some really great makers that use only 2 ingredients in their vinegar… simply grape must or grape must and wine vinegar.

When you shop for Balsamic Vinegar always look at the ingredients… if you see emulsifiers, coloring agents or anything other than the 2 ingredients mentioned above it is probably something you wouldn’t want to ingest.