*5 Stars from Paul Pacult - Highest Recommendation!* Gran Classico Bitter is based on the original Bitter of Turin recipe dating from the 1860s. This classic aperitif is artisan-made in a small Swiss distillery from an infusion of numerous herbs and roots including bitter orange peel, wormwood, gentian, rhubarb, and other aromatic plants. Gran Classico Bitter’s color is a natural result of the herbs and plants infused into pure grain spirit produced to the highest Swiss standards and is not artificially colored in any way. It is amazingly complex and refreshingly bittersweet with a long and remarkable finish. Traditionally mixed into a tall glass of iced, sparkling water in the Italian style, or added to a fine ale, a la Française, or as an unforgettable ingredient in historic cocktails, such as the Negroni or Americano. It has garnered a year-long waiting list that includes the best mixologists in the world.
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By: Mahon McGrath
K&L Staff Member
For long years, Campari was the only game in town for a bitter of this sort. It has fans both loyal and ardent and is indeed wonderful. Campari tastes to my palate mainly about the contrast of bitter and sweet. The Gran Classico seems a touch gentler compared to it, easing back a wee bit on the bitter and then fleshing out that bitter-sweet polarity with a plusher range of dry woodsy spice, citrus and herbal accents, without ever obscuring the basic character. I wouldn’t think of Gran Classico so much as a replacement for or an improvement on Campari but as a worthy addition to the genre. Some cocktails, like the Old Pal, really do come to life with the Gran Classico in a way they never did with Campari. On the whole it makes for a mellow, integrated cocktail. Whether this will be an improvement will depend on both the drink and your tastes. Gran Classico is pretty compelling just on it’s own with soda over ice: a little variety never hurt anyone, eh? This is well worth trying!
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