Happy Hour Late Tuesday this week…
as Italian, I am very familiar with bitters: if you spent some time in Europe or if you are a passionate in the field, you probably know of Amaro Montenegro, Aperol, Averna, Campari, and a whole bunch of other bitters used for mixers or by themselves as digestifs. Interestingly, bitters were not born as liquor, how they are mainly know nowadays. It appears as the earliest bitters were instead used in the ancient times (back to the Egyptians and all the way through Middle Ages and American colonization) for medical purposes. Apothecaries would often stock bitters to cure, thanks to their herbal infusion, stomach sicknesses, and moreover they were used in mixers of preventive medicinal cocktails with tonic water.
From ancient remedies to difestifs, bitter have become today a synonimus of ammazzacaffe’ (Italian for “coffee killer”: yes because after a festive meal a coffee is not enough to help your stomach processing all the food!) , amaros, or even more commonly, simple liquor.
Among all the different types of bitters I ever tasted and heard of, there is one kind that I have to admit sounds new to me: the Peach Bitter. Introduced by the Bitter Truth, a German spirits company, back in 2006, Peach Bitters are “a contemporary interpretation of a classic style of bitters“. More delicate and fruity than what I am used to, this bitter is perfect for flavoring cocktails of all kinds, from martinis to tonics to gimlets.
So we tried it and found out that its bittersweet taste works perfectly with the zesty, sweet flavor of Limoncello in a cocktail called Renaissance, a mix of Cognac, Vermouth, Limoncello and of course Peach Bitter. It will warm you up on a winter night, but thanks to its delicate notes it will fast forward you to the awakening of Spring.
8 Parts Cognac
5 Parts Vermouth, Sweet
1 Part Rometti Limoncello
2 Dashes Peach Bitters
1 Peel Lemon
Fill a mixing glass with ice cubes. Add all ingredients. Stir and strain into a chilled cocktail glass. Garnish with lemon.