Bitters -

spirits in which bitter roots or herbs have been steeped. Medicinally, they are divided into "Simple Bitters," including such remedies as Dogwood, Gentian and Quassia, which by their peculiar bitterness serve as a stimulant to appetite and digestion; "Aromatic Bitters," including Virginia Snake Root and Wild Cherry Bark, which contain an aromatic principle and are more or less astringent, and "Special Bitters" whose main principle is usually Cinchona, the source of quinine, and its several preparations - in small doses acting as "Simple Bitters" and in larger as a remedy for malarial affections. "Cascarilla" is the Spanish and South American name for Cinchona and "Calisaya" is one of the best known varieties.

Commercially, Bitters are widely used in this country as an appetizer, with other spirits and water, or with syrup and soda, etc.; in the making of cocktails and various other "mixed drinks." They are known by special trade names, taken generally from the constituent herb or bark, the place of production or the name of the manufacturers.

Arround Bitters in The Grocer's Encyclopedia


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