If you are looking for Bitters to make your Old Fashioned come alive, we are here to help. At the end of this article, you will know about the best bitters for old-fashioned.
Let me take a moment to explain what bitters are if you are new to cocktails. Bitters are alcohol mixed with plant matter and used in cocktails to enhance flavors. Bitters enhance your cocktails experience with fruits, spices, herbs, aromatic roots, and other ingredients. Just a little dash of bitters is enough to add flavor since it is very concentrated.
Let’s get right into our search for bitters, shall we?
List of Best Bitters for Old Fashioned
With all these varieties of bitters available in markets, it can be confusing for you to choose. We have narrowed down a list of the best bitters for an old-fashioned.
#1. Angostura Aromatic Bitters
Angostura is a must-try bitter for experiments in your home bar and it never disappoints. These bitters enhance your whiskey’s woody qualities and enrich sweetness. It provides a fragrant combo of fruits and spices that are complementary to old-fashioned.
You can find various options on the official website for the best angostura bitters for old-fashioned. A suggested method to try is to mix the Angostura aromatic bitters with sugar or simple syrup for a slight sweetness.
Add your favorite bourbon and you will have tried one of the best bitters for maple bourbon old-fashioned.
#2. Regan’s Orange Bitters No. 6
Regan’s bitters are no less famous than Angostura. They blend well with your spirits instead of overpowering them. Regan’s have the best orange bitters for old-fashioned. They go well with whiskey, rum, brandy, gin, vodka, and even with other bitters.
The orange flavor without sugar and cardamom undertone makes it loved by professionals.
The creator, Gaz Regan, has said this bitter goes well with a large range of cocktails, including Manhattans, sazeracs, and old-fashioned. It is certainly a great all-rounder.
#3. Dr. Adam Elmegirab’s Orinoco Aromatic Bitters
These are an upgrade of Angostura bitters but jazzed up with so many baked spice flavors, and are used in the famous Dead rabbit bar, which is counted among the 50 best bars in the world.
It is named after the longest rivers in South America, which run through Columbia and Venezuela. These are old and still embrace the modern cocktail culture. Hence bartenders use this to make an Old Fashioned with a modern twist.
It is blended with rich ingredients like cinnamon, chamomile, orange peel, green cardamom, quassia bark, raisins, and red sandalwood. It has a good backed-up dried fruit taste throughout, along with a long bittersweet finish with hints of molasses.
It complements spirits like whiskey, aged rum, brandies, and even various fruit flavors.
#4. Bittermens Xocolatl Mole Bitters
These bitters are great to achieve a rich chocolate/cinnamon bite to your cocktails. The chocolate will not overpower your alcohol and adds an exotic shade change to the drink.
Mountain (cocktail expert) described it as a “combination of cacao, cinnamon, and spice that can bring out a richness in dark-liquor cocktails.”
They add a delicious flavor to your old-fashioned and work great with tequila or rum, making them very versatile. The original website said that the classic Mole sauce of Mexico inspires it. It has 53% alcohol, and a dash of it would do wonders. Xocolatl mole bitter is certainly one of the best bitters for old-fashioned.
#5. Fee Brothers Black Walnut Bitters
These will bring an earthly taste to drinks along with a slight creaminess. This walnut bitter has plenty of natural nutty flavor, followed by the notes of cocoa and cola. Its subtle sweet finish taste offsets its bitterness. The Fee Brothers had their best bitter experts to craft this one to bring the robust nut flavor.
It adds a dimension and complexity to your cocktails, along with having a sour cherry aroma. Try them in your old-fashioned, like a powerful bourbon or any whiskey that is finished in sherry or rum casks.
#6. Scrappy’s Cardamom Bitters
A strong flavor like cardamom can overwhelm the cocktail. It is made to control the cardamom flavor and not overpowering. They add the right quality to the cocktail with fruity citrus bitter to compliment the spices.
The experts at Scrappy’s have made it to bring complexity and warmth of cardamom to your favorite cocktails. Its ingredients are organic cardamom seeds, herbs, and spices for a versatile flavor. Cardamom seed pods come with digestive benefits.
These bitters are handcrafted in Seattle and are an innovative blend of spices. The flavor of cardamom is floral, citrus, spicy, and mixed, which makes it perfect for old-fashioned and for toddy drinks. It complements aged and clear spirits very well too.
#7. Copper and Kings Old Fashioned Bitters
Although the name itself says it works great for old fashioned, these bitters also go well with Manhattan. The company had their specialist craft these old-fashioned bitters. They combine botanical herbs and concentrated oils into a Brandy base with honey and orange peel, which is then barrel-aged to mix with flavor.
This bitter competes with Regan’s orange bitters for the best orange bitters for old-fashioned.
The original website says these bitters blend spices, herbs, botanical extracts, and oils, and are prepared in an alembic brandy base. It is mixed with honey, vapor distilled orange peel and then aged with American Oak. It is 100% natural with no artificial ingredients or preservatives. It contains glycerine and is a beautiful caramel color.
#8 Bittermens Elemakule Tiki Bitters
You are missing out if you have never tried Bittermens Elemakule Tiki bitters. Bittermens have a golden collection of bitters, but we will stick to the tiki bitters since we are discussing old-fashioned. It has flavors of cinnamon, allspice, ginger, citrus peels, and cardamom. Some even call this an entire world of tropical cocktails distilled down into a few drops.
The original website calls them “the taste of islands.” They are inspired by one of the new gardens of Tiki legends: Brian Miller. Bittermens gets its inspiration from both the Polynesia and Caribbean schools of tropical cocktails. It contains 44% ABV.
#9. Hella Cocktail Co. Aromatic Bitters
This company is known for quality bitters. This one complements old-fashioned like aged whiskey and rum.
They make some balanced bitters with unique flavors like Ginger and Eucalyptus. I especially like their bitters and soda in a can,” said Darnell Holguin, co-founder of The Silver Sun Group and beverage partner at New York’s Las’ Lap.
From the official website: “Our Aromatic bitters are well balanced. They have the aromatic notes of cinnamon, clove, and Jamaican allspice with the depth and kick of black peppercorns and caraway. By using wormwood besides Gentian root the bitter finish is perfect without being overpowering. A true classic.”
#10. Jack Rudy Aromatic Bitter
All these bitters are fancier alternatives to the Classic Angostura. The key features are fresh, bright, and sweet. They are perfect for when you are looking for something less bitter and a bit more spicy.
The aromatic collection is a collaboration with Cocktail Punk. It is made with subtle notes of citrus winter spices and a base of burnt cane sugar and bittering agents.
This bitter can help you in getting rid of a hangover the next morning. Squeeze some drops of this tonic into your water bottle or ginger ale, and it will help ease your nausea.
#11. Strongwater Old Fashioned Cocktail Syrup
This syrup is user-friendly and comes with instructions on the bottle. The company spent three years making the bottled version of this bitter. The ingredients have orange peels, organic cherries, spices like cinnamon, clove, cardamom, and some bitter herbs.
This bitter is good enough to try on its own with ice. Add a flavored whiskey and orange peel, and perhaps top it with a cherry. Its key ingredients are mountain spring water and demerara sugar— we suggest pairing it with rye, rum, bourbon, whiskey.
Suitable for vegan options as it is gluten-free.
#12 WithCo Ellis Old Fashioned
Made by whiskey enthusiasts, this has a perfect balance of ingredients for old-fashioned. Known for its vanilla base from Madagascar, it also contains special ingredients like cinnamon, orange oil, cane sugar, aroma bitters, water, and whole vanilla bean.
Perfect with any brown liquor and ice. Smooth on our throats and enjoyed with bourbon, tequila, and whiskey. Contain no preservatives, artificial flavors, or gluten. It comes in a glass bottle to maintain the freshness of the ingredients.
As you can see, there is a huge range of bitters in the market, but these are our ten best recommendations. The list provides a listing of special ingredients and expert reviews, and caters to every kind of taste and style, so hopefully you will be able to find one to suit you in your next search for your best bitter for an old-fashioned.