Find happy hours and drink specials anywhere you are

Step-by-Step DIY Guide: Make Your Own Bitters

Step-by-Step DIY Guide: Make Your Own Bitters

Every well-stocked bar has a variety of bitters, and in these days of resurgent cocktail culture, you can find many places that make them in house. Bitters are essentially high proof alcohol concoctions infused with herbs, fruits, spices or roots. As longtime mixologist Phoebe Esmon knows, there is vast room for experimentation with bitters’ flavor, ranging from an intense herb variations to the classic spiced aromatic.

“The classic of all classic cocktails — The Old Fashioned — stems from a basic aromatic bitters,” says Esmon. “But you can easily get creative and adjust the recipe for countless other drinks.”

You can easily create your own classic cocktails by stocking your bar with bitters from the store. But, if you’re like us and are curious about how to make them yourself, Esmon reveals the basic recipe isn’t all that hard to execute. Tea, a handful of spices and some high-proof bourbon are really all you need.

We sat with Esmon recently at her current bar home, Emmanuelle, in Philadelphia's Northern Liberties neighborhood. Click through our guide to try your hand at it.

All photos by Grace Dickinson

Recent Articles
spacer

Feedback

How are we doing? Tell us what you like or don't like and how we can improve. We would love to hear your thoughts!

*Name:
*E-mail:
*Suggestions:
 
The Inventor of St. Germain, Robert J. Cooper, Has Passed Away at 39

The Inventor of St. Germain, Robert J. Cooper, Has Passed Away at 39

The inventor of St. Germain passed away on Monday, April 25, 2016....read more ›

by Alexander Frane May 2, 2016
Where to Go for Mother's Day in D.C.

Where to Go for Mother's Day in D.C.

Here's where to take your mom on Mother's Day....read more ›

by Lanna Nguyen Apr 29, 2016
Where to Watch the Capitals in the Stanley Cup Playoffs

Where to Watch the Capitals in the Stanley Cup Playoffs

Check out where to watch the Washington Capitals in the Stanley Cup Playoffs....read more ›

by Lanna Nguyen Apr 26, 2016
SPONSORED
Drink Nation Store Rectangle
Make This Purple Cocktail To Honor Prince's Memory

Make This Purple Cocktail To Honor Prince's Memory

Make this delicious purple cocktail to honor Prince's memory....read more ›

by The Drink Nation Apr 21, 2016
Where to Find the Best Tacos in Washington, D.C.

Where to Find the Best Tacos in Washington, D.C.

Here's where to find the best tacos in Washington D.C....read more ›

by Lanna Nguyen Apr 21, 2016
This Late Night L.A. Restaurant is Serving Boozy Bowls of Classic Kids Cereal

This Late Night L.A. Restaurant is Serving Boozy Bowls of Classic Kids Cereal

Grab a boozy, late-night breakfast at L.A.'s newest concept....read more ›

by Alexander Frane Apr 19, 2016
Disney's Tower of Terror Is Getting a Bar

Disney's Tower of Terror Is Getting a Bar

Disney's Tower of Terror is getting its very own bar....read more ›

by Alexander Frane Apr 15, 2016
Bulleit Is Releasing a Barrel Proof Bourbon

Bulleit Is Releasing a Barrel Proof Bourbon

Bulleit is releasing a barrel proof version of their whiskey, at least to shops in Kentucky....read more ›

by Alexander Frane Apr 13, 2016
Best Washington, D.C. Brunch Drink Specials

Best Washington, D.C. Brunch Drink Specials

Whether you're trying to get the best of a hangover or simply celebrating the weekend with a bout of day drinking, these bars with breakfast sipping s...read more ›

by Drink DC Feb 10, 2014
D.C. Bars with Amazing Outdoor Seating

D.C. Bars with Amazing Outdoor Seating

Spring is here, and that means it's time to crawl out from your hibernation and embrace the sun and warm weather....read more ›

by Lanna Nguyen Apr 12, 2016
SPONSORED
View all Articles

Sign up to get weekly drinking news, bar reviews, events and more sent directly to your inbox!

Close