The mad Germans at The Bitter Truth continue their march into odd liqueurs, this time with two new distillates: An apricot liqueur and a violet liqueur. Both are 44 proof.
The Bitter Truth Apricot Liqueur is based on a traditional German tipple, brought into the ’10s for a modern audience. The nose is intensely apricot, in keeping with the dark amber color. On the tongue, lots of sweet apricot jam character, a sort of earthier version of a peach, about as authentic as it gets. That said, apricot is kind of a funky flavor that really needs to be in a cocktail — as evidenced by so many classic cocktails that use apricot brandy in them — in order to fully appreciate its charms. B+
The Bitter Truth Violet Liqueur is an homage to creme de violette, the long-dead and now-revived liqueur that is essential (in tiny quantities) to a handful of classic cocktail recipes (such as the one below). The spot-on violet-colored (artificial, I’m sad to say) is perfect, deep purple in the center and fading to blue at the edges. The nose is perfumy and floral, but the body is surprisingly mild and easy. A bit of blueberry fruit, light sweetness (much more so than the Apricot), and a pleasant finish. This one’s actually palatable on its own — though the nose is a bit too hefty — and, again, perfect in a cocktail. A-
$27 each / the-bitter-truth.com
The Aviation Cocktail
2 oz. gin
1/4 oz. violet liqueur
1/4 oz. Maraschino liqueur
1/4 oz. lemon juice
Stir with ice and strain into a chilled cocktail glass. Garnish with a lemon peel.