Bittercube Blackstrap Bitters

Bittercube’s Story:

Bittercube Bitters were created in Milwaukee, WI, in 2009. They make all their bitters by hand. All flavors feature naturally sourced ingredients, and never contain any extracts or oils. The process is different for each of their bitters, with batches going through various phases on their way to completion, taking anywhere from two to five weeks depending on variety.

Bittercube has grown from humble beginnings, starting with one gallon jars of bitters and growing to now producing batches in large maceration barrels. No matter how large the batch though, the careful handcrafted process has stayed the same.

Blackstrap Bitters:

Bittercube used two different types of molasses to create their Blackstrap Bitters. Double A grade and a Blackstrap for a robust, full-bodied molasses flavor and aroma. They also feature notes of clove, sassafras and sarsaparilla. 

They’re ideal for rum and whiskey cocktails, especially cocktails featuring robust, strongly flavored spirits. They’re also great in warm or hot cocktails, and fall or winter cocktails. These rich bitters sit perfectly atop egg white cocktails and provide intense aroma and visual appeal.

Lost in the Blue Light

1 oz. Apple Brandy
3/4 oz. fres lemon juice
1/2 oz. simple syrup
1/2 oz. Ginger Liqueur
3 dashes Bittercube Blackstrap Bitters
top with 1 oz. Cava

Combine Apple brandy, lemon juice, simple syrup, ginger liqueur, & blackstrap bitters in a cocktail shaker with plenty of ice. Shake until frosty and strain into a flute glass. Top with cava and garnish with a lemon curl. Enjoy!

Salad spinners can do so much more than just spin salad

The salad spinner is an ideal tool if you’re trying to get in shape for the new year. A salad spinner is anything but a one trick pony though. In addition to helping you wash and dry delicate leafy greens for salads, these handy tools can be used for a variety of kitchen tasks. 

Clean herbs & braising greens

You can rinse, wash, and spin fresh herbs and hearty braising greens dry in a salad spinner too! Use it exactly the same way you would with more delicate salad greens. 

Clean other veggies

Craggy vegetables like broccoli or cauliflower can be difficult to clean and dry because of their irregular shape. Leeks are notorious for being filled with sand and dirt. They can be a real pain in the neck to clean, and even more annoying to dry. Use your salad spinner bowl to soak and wash these veggies (repeatedly in the case of leeks) and then spin them dry as usual. 

Dry pasta

Pasta needs to be dried well for dishes like pasta salad or baked pasta casseroles. This way you won’t water down your dressings or recipes. This can be especially challenging with tubular pastas where water may get trapped. With a salad spinner you can remove the water from your pasta without fear of smooshing or breaking it. 

Rinse and drain canned beans

If you don’t have a colander handy, the one built into your salad spinner is perfect for rinsing and draining canned beans. You can even spin heartier beans dry to remove every last drop of moisture. This is perfect for roasting crunchy chick peas for snacks or salads! 

Remove moisture from grated veggies

Grated zucchini for quick breads or muffins, or grated potatoes for latkes or hash browns can release a lot of moisture. It’s important to squeeze most of that moisture out before cooking so your recipes don’t turn out rubbery and watered down. You can even use your salad spinner to drain moisture from salted eggplant slices or spiral sliced veggies.  

Clean delicate berries

Fresh berries are usually too delicate to be spun dry. You can still use your salad spinner though! Gently wash your berries in the spinner bowl, then drain them with the colander insert. 

Strain seeds from canned tomatoes

All you need to do to remove the seeds from canned tomatoes is break them up a little with your hands and give them a few spins. 

Defrost frozen foods

Your salad spinner is perfect for draining the moisture from frozen shrimp as it defrosts, and then spinning them dry just before you put them into your shrimp cocktail. You can also spin out the excess moisture from frozen spinach too!

Proof yeast doughs

You won’t need to do any spinning here, but the clear bowl of a salad spinner is the perfect vessel for keeping an eye on yeast dough as it rises without having to lift the damp towel from the top of the bowl. 

Wash delicates or dry swim clothes

Our last tip doesn’t even involve food, but a salad spinner is perfect for washing delicates at home, or for helping get the moisture out of wet swim suits. Just be sure to wash the spinner well before using it again in the kitchen! 

Fee Brothers’ Cherry Bitters

Fee Brothers’ History:

In 1864, James Fee opened a grocery and liquor store in Rochester, NY to help support his large, close-knit family. His brothers helped him grow the store into a successful winery and wine import business. In 1883 the name was changed from James Fee & Company to Fee Brothers.

Surviving Prohibition: 

When prohibition began in 1920, Fee Brothers kept themselves afloat by making altar wine & distributing wine-making supplies. They even consulted with homeowners to legally make their own wine at home. It was legal to make a small amount of wine for personal use, but making and selling stronger spirits was strictly forbidden.

That didn’t stop people from trying though, and poor quality alcohol flooded the market. Most of the people making this black market booze had no clue what they were doing. For that reason, most of the alcohol being sold in saloons and speakeasies tasted terrible. Fee Brothers saw this as an opportunity and developed a line of cordial syrups and drink flavorings. They designed them to make inferior spirits taste like the real thing. Benedictine, Chartreuse, Brandy, and Rum flavorings were among their most popular products.

Cocktail Bitters:

When prohibition ended in 1933, Fee Brothers started selling liquor again. They kept making their cordial syrups though, and they remained very popular. Therefore, they soon decided to focus on mixers, syrups, and flavorings instead. By 1950 they were on a never-ending quest to develop new products and their flavored cocktail bitters line really became a focus. Fee Brothers’ product list now boasts almost 100 drink mix products. Today they’re best know for their huge selection of flavored cocktail bitters.

Cherry Bitters:

Fee Brothers’ Cherry bitters have a bright sweet cherry flavor with a subtle bitterness, floral notes, and a hint of candy on the nose. They’re wonderful in fruity, summery cocktails and are also an excellent addition to whiskey cocktails like old fashioned or manhattans, especially for those who love their maraschino cherries. They’re also perfect for fixing a Valentine’s Day cocktail for your sweetheart. Please watch the video below for another idea of how to put Fee’s Cherry bitters to use in your home bar.

The Orchard

2 oz Applejack or Apple Brandy
1/2 oz Yellow Chartreuse
1/2 oz Grenadine
4 dashes cherry bitters
Soda water

Combine applejack, chartreuse, grenadine, & cherry bitters in a cocktail shaker. Add plenty of ice and shake together until frothy. Strain into a cocktail glass and top off with soda water.