Have you ever heard of Peychaud’s Bitters? This distinctive and strong-flavored cocktail additive is used to give additional depth and complexity to drinks.
Knowing how to use it and the various substitutes for it can be the key to whipping up delightful cocktails at home.
But, more than that, understanding the unique properties of Peychaud’s Bitters provides a window into some of its most creative uses as an ingredient in mixed drinks.
Luckily, there are a few reliable alternatives available if you can’t seem to track down a bottle of Peychaud’s Bitters.
Read on to learn more about this beguiling elixir and its substitutes.
What’s Peychaud’s Bitter?
Peychaud’s Bitters is a scented, aromatic flavor enhancer that has been used in the world of cocktails for almost two centuries.
First created in New Orleans by Antoine Amedee Peychaud, it boasts an intense and fragrant flavor.
The formula consists of an assortment of botanicals: gentian root, cardamom, and Haitian peppers, among other components- all soaked in brandy or Cognac before bottling.
It has a slightly spicy taste with notes of citrus and a warming finish.
The perfect addition to cocktails like Manhattans, Old Fashioneds, and Sazeracs due to its bitter-sweet flavor profile, this versatile liqueur can help elevate any spirituous drink.
The 5 Best Substitutes for Peychaud’s Bitters
If you’re looking for a substitute for Peychaud’s bitters, you’ll be glad to know that there are several alternatives available.
Here are five of the best substitutes for Peychaud’s Bitters:
1 – Angostura Bitters
Angostura Bitters is an all-purpose, aromatic flavor enhancer that has been making drinks more interesting for over 200 years.
Originally created in 1824 as a health remedy for sailors, today, Angostura is an essential bartender tool.
It adds a spicy sweetness to drinks like Old Fashioned, Manhattan, and Champagne Cocktails.
The bitter’s acrid and herbal taste comes from the mixture of ingredients, including herbs, spices, roots, and bark.
Its signature scent comes from clove and cardamom that lingers for moments after sipping the drink.
For those who are unable to find Peychaud’s Bitters, Angostura makes for a great substitute due to its similar spiced citrus flavor profile.
It can give your favorite drinks a bit of zing without overpowering them with any one ingredient.
2 – Suze Bitters
Suze Bitters is a unique, aromatic cocktail ingredient that adds depth, complexity, and balance to drinks.
This firm French favorite has a taste of rhubarb, resulting in an herbal and slightly tart flavor that stands out from the other bitters available on the market.
Its noticeably bitter edge means it can be used sparingly – compared to Peychaud’s Bitters, you’ll only need half the volume to achieve the same results.
Suze Bitters have a syrupy texture, so they will slowly dissolve rather than evaporate like some other types of bitters, allowing you to utilize its wide range of flavors without overpowering your drink.
If you’re looking for ways to replace Peychaud’s Bitters in your cocktails, Suze Bitters would be an excellent choice.
3 – Boker’s Bitters
Boker’s Bitters first appeared on the market around 1828, when it was invented by Dr. Johann Gottlieb Böker.
Also known as Boker’s Distilled Aromatic Bitters, this alcoholic spirit was traditionally made from a unique combination of herbs, bark, and aromatic oils.
Nowadays, these bitters are meant to add complexity and flavor to cocktails, as well as balance out overly sweet drinks.
To the taste buds, you’ll find that Boker’s Bitters bring strong herbal notes in addition to a slight bitterness that adds a nice crunchy texture to the tongue.
If you are looking for something similar yet different than Peychaud’s Bitters, then consider replacing it with Boker’s Bitters instead; its slightly different taste profile will surely stand up just fine while adding an extra zesty kick altogether.
4 – Old Fashioned Bitters Company
The Old Fashioned Bitters Company has been around since 2012, offering original and crafted bitters recipes.
These bitters deliver an exquisite mix of flavors without any artificial ingredients, a fact no doubt appreciated by fans of classic cocktails.
The flavor and texture of the bitters are extremely strong, containing strong tastes of aromatic spices such as cloves, sage, lavender, and dried oranges.
If you would like to substitute Old Fashioned Bitters in place of Peychaud’s Bitters, add a few drops from the former at a time until you reach your desired taste level.
This will reduce the risk of overpowering the drink with too much bitterness.
5 – Old Forester Hummingbird Bitters
The Old Forester Hummingbird Bitters is an intensely flavored gin infused with herbal and citrusy flavors.
It is one of the primary bitters to use in classic cocktails, with its natural botanical ingredients such as clove, cinnamon, allspice, and nutmeg.
The bitters have a rich texture and a robust flavor that adds complexity and an intriguing herbal element to drinks.
It can substitute for Peychaud’s Bitters in recipes for improved balance, as it highlights gin notes between the foundation of citrus and spices present in your cocktail.
While still adding depth to the flavor profile that you are aiming for, Old Foertser Hummingbird will lend itself perfectly to both strong-flavored drinks and delicate juleps alike.
In conclusion, Peychaud’s Bitters may be the go-to for drinks, but there are plenty of other bitters which provide a unique twist on classic cocktails.
You can try Angostura Bitters, Suze Bitters, Boker’s Bitters, Old Fashioned Bitters Company, or Old Forester Hummingbird to replace Peychaud’s Bitters.
Each of these bitters provides a unique flavor and complexity that will add depth and character to any drink.
Whether you’re looking for a tart edge or sweet-spicy notes, there is a bitter out there that can give your cocktail the perfect flavor.