Two weeks after initially bottling up the first step of our bitters, it was time to move on to step 2.
For this phase, we need to separate the solids from the alcohol by placing a cheesecloth-lined funnel over a new, clean jar. Strain out all the solids and squeeze the cheesecloth bundle to get everything out before transferring the solids to a saucepan. stir in a cup of water and bring it to a boil. Once it’s boiling, let it simmer for 10-15 minutes, and then pour the whole thing back into the original jar. Let it cool to room temperature, seal it up, and let it sit for another week, shaking daily.
At this point, you’ve got 2 jars for each batch of bitters you’re making. If you happen to be making four at once like we are, make sure you label the jars clearly so you know which alcohol corresponds to which jar of botanicals.
Some of them are starting to smell REALLY good, so I’m pretty excited to see what we come up with this time. If the smell is any indication, I’m going to have to re-name the “Cherry Cola Bitters,” because they smell nothing like cherry cola and smell very much like the forrest. We’ll find out for sure in a couple of weeks!