My sleepy burg of Novato, California is home to a surprising operation: King Floyd’s, which produces both artisanal bitters as well as a couple of tins of rimming salts. The company was kind enough to send all five of its products our way for review. Thoughts follow.
King Floyd’s Orange Bitters – Strong orange notes are instantly evident on the nose, almost like a triple sec, with floral elements at times. The palate is something else entirely, however — intensely bitter, almost to the breaking point. The orange peel element licks at the sides of the palate, while the center of the tongue gets a fully bitter blasting. The finish is pungent and lasting. Use sparingly. B / $20 per 100ml bottle
King Floyd’s Aromatic Bitters – Lots of anise and cinnamon on the nose here, but the palate is particularly hefty with cloves. The experience develops further on the tongue to reveal notes of dark chocolate and coffee beans, all filtered through that massive bitterness that’s part of the orange experience. Here, the overall experience is a bit more cohesive on the whole, the bitterness fitting more compactly with the intensity of the herbs. A- / $20 per 100ml bottle
King Floyd’s Cardamom Bitters – A unique expression of bitters, exotic and eastern on the nose, evocative of a Moroccan bazaar. That nutmeg-on-steroids character is pumped up further on the palate, which segues into something akin to a well-aged rug in the back of a hookah joint, slightly smoky, with notes of tobacco, sweat, and funk. Clearly built for tiki. B+ / $20 per 100ml bottle
King Floyd’s Sea Flake Rim Salt – This is straight-up, unadulterated sea salt in a tin. Nice granularity, and it works well as a rimmer. It’s hard to rate salt, but I’ll try. A- / $8 per 4 oz tin
King Floyd’s Sriracha Rim Salt – This brownish salt is pungent with spice, so much so that the aroma of sriracha fills the room when you first pour it into the tin. On the tongue, it doesn’t have as much heat as the aroma would initially lead you to believe, which is probably a good thing. Who needs a cocktail rimmer that’s so spicy they can’t taste the actual drink? A great bloody mary rimmer. A / $10 per 4 oz tin