Big, herbal, and bitter as the name would suggest, the Padova, Italy-made Luxardo Bitter stands as a solid alternative to the 48 proof Campari any day of the week.
Ingredients aren’t disclosed, but the liqueur offers a big nose of bitter gentian, dark chocolate, and macerated berries, falling largely in line with Campari-esque expectations. Bracing but soothing on the tongue, the chocolate notes are what immediately stand out the strongest, tempering the liqueur’s boldly herbal elements with a light-handed sweetness, a fresh rhubarb character building as it detours into notes of orange peel, green thyme, and a touch of baking spice. All of this fades in time, the finish showcasing an impressively bitter body — all gentian and wormwood, leaving a punchy but pleasant grip to linger on the tongue.
Use freely as a Campari substitute.