In a nutshell: No cocktail bar is complete without this iconic bitters but add it to so
The lowdown: There are other aromatic bitters but only one ANGOSTURA, the brand name under which Dr. J.G.B. Siegert and his successors have sold their product throughout the world since 1830. It does not contain Angostura Bark but derives its name from the fact that it originated in the town of Angostura, Venezuela, renamed Ciudad Bolivar in 1846.
Perhaps most famous for their bitters, Angostura are well known distillers mainly of rum. Based in Port of Spain, Trinidad the companies mainstay Angostura Bitters were originally created in the 1820’s for treating stomach ailments in Venezuela where their creator Dr. Siegert was surgeon general to Simon Bolivar’s army. Exported to England soon after, Angostura grew its reputation through a fondness for mixing with gin. Siegert sons relocated the company to its present home in Trinidad in the 1870’s and the company rebranded from ‘Dr. Siegert’s Aromatic Bitters’ to the name as we know it today.
Interestingly, the recipe for Angostura is still very much a closely guarded secret. Ingredients travel from Venezuela to England where they are ‘coded’ and sent on to Trinidad where it is said there is a long-standing agreement by customs not to inspect the contents!