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what you need to garnish with bitters
how to garnish with bitters
You often encounter bitters used in cocktail recipes, but did you know they also make wonderful garnishes? You classically find bitters garnishing egg-white cocktails. This is because while eggs taste delicious in drinks and create a wonderful mouthfeel, they don’t have the best smell. So once you’ve mastered your dry shake (watch the video here), you can delicately drop a few bitters around the edge of your egg white cocktail to enhance both the aroma and flavor of your finished drink.
Here’s how to garnish with bitters!
- Create your egg-white cocktail by dry shaking your ingredients, adding ice and shaking again. Double strain into your glassware.
- If you are using bitters with a dropper vial, gently position a few droplets around the foam to enhance both the aroma and the flavor of your finished drink.
- If you are using bitters with a dasher top (looks like a small hole in the center of a disc of plastic. This is called a regulator, and it does just that, prevents you from pouring too much in at one time), practice giving a few hard dashes in an empty cup to get the feel of the force needed for accuracy in your aim and dash amounts. (See more in tips below!)
- Once your bitters are placed in your cocktail foam, you can drag a toothpick, straw or back of a bar spoon through the droplets to create intricate patterns.
- Have fun experimenting with the range of shapes you can make! Hearts, marbling effects, and more. Like latte art, but easier!
tips for garnishing with bitters
- To properly dash bitters, you want to hold the bottle firmly in your dominant hand, turn the bitters upside down over your glass, and give one forceful downward motion and retract quickly back up again, to expel the liquid out of the regulator in the correct quantity. To get this right, you have to do it like you mean it! If you gently tip it to the side, you will get a dribble instead, and nobody wants that 😉
- If you are using Angostura bitters, they are known for their delicious flavors of baking spices, but they are also infamously known for staining many a bar top! So if you are trying dashing your bitters with force for the first time, we recommend wrapping your workstation (kitchen counters?) with plastic wrap or another water-repellant barrier beforehand.