Friday 25 October 2013

Bitters: Fashion catches up with Nige and HM

Once again, it seems, the world scampers along in the trend-setting footsteps of this blog - not to mention those of HM the Queen. A characteristically encyclopaedic item on the BBC News website informs us that all the bright young things nowadays are turning their backs on the sweet stuff and knocking back the bitters. I was at it myself in Venice recently, enjoying many an Aperol spritz and Campari, but I've always been up for any bitters going, from Dubonnet to Suze and anything I can get my hands on that delivers that bitter medicinal hit. A few years ago, as the BBC News piece reminds us (to save you the effort, it's right near the bottom), the Queen's taste for Dubonnet seemed outlandish. Not now - it's bitters all round. Cheers! Mine's a Cynar with a Fernet chaser...


  1. Joey Joe Joe Jr.25 October 2013 at 21:19

    Does Angostura count as bitters? I'm rather partial to a pink gin myself.

  2. Rochdale-born US celebrity mixologist Gary Regan is another who was prompted to make his own to replicate the orange bitters in some old cocktail recipes. Celebrity mixologist? high status indeed.
    I was once dragged, kicking and screaming, well, it was 1966, up some stairs just off the seafront in Brighton, off seafront? the establishment was Rookies Club, a well known watering hole for the dissolute, forlorn and shabby chic. Mein madame was a fair copy of Hermione Gingold, pre-mortem, the drinks on offer consisted of Camapri and soda, pink gin or a grey market brand of whiskey, all at eye-watering prices.
    Hermoine, as it transpired was a transvestite and an absolute hoot, the weather was typical summer Brighton, Rookies club a scene from Seance on a Wet Afternoon, ideal for a soaking in overpriced Campari, thoroughly enjoyable, I think.

  3. So you're the inspiration for that Kinks song Lola Malty?

  4. The 'Gin & It', fabulous drink.

  5. Never tried Fernet Branca as a chaser Nige, but first became hooked 40 years ago when I employed it, regularly to my shame, as a morning-after cure after a night-before of excess. The injection of neat 43% alcohol did the trick in about 30 minutes. When my up a little, I discovered that the drink that many friends had described as 'revolting' or 'vile' had wormed its way into my very vitals, and I would take a 'shot' simply for the pleasure of enjoying the acrid warmth of it. It was once described to me as 'Listerine without the sugar', but that was surely too severe?