The hardest won manhattan ever
May 24, 2009 12:32 AM   Subscribe

Where can a Manhattan lover find bitters in Daegue, South Korea?

My brother is in Daegue, anxiously awaiting his firstborn. He got some good bourbon at the duty-free, and even managed to track down sweet vermouth and maraschino cherries - where can he find bitters? Or better yet, where can he find a Korean equivalent? Any tips as to what might be an acceptable substitute?

Difficulty level - not that high. He's fluent in Korean, he just needs to know what he's looking for.
posted by smartyboots to Food & Drink (8 answers total)
I live in Seoul, not Daegu, but I travel there frequently. I can't answer your question, unfortunately, but Daegu has a fairly tight-knit expat community. Your brother could head over to Club That downtown to ask some other expats, or you might try asking this question in the Daegu Friendship Club group on Facebook.
posted by smorange at 3:53 AM on May 24, 2009

2 things to consider:

1. find an expat bar and ask the manager to buy a bottle (i've done this in places in the US that have never heard of bitters or an old fashioned)

2. agnostura, the brand of bitters most people have ever heard of make drinks with is an internationl brand in places in asia and the pacific rim actually make consumable bottled beverages. so it might not be the chore he thinks. lemon-lime-bitters is pretty easy to find any where in that part of the world. its an alcohol free drink that tastes like a whisky sour with and old fashioned thrown in. point is the brand exists there.... any more wester or higher end food store might have a good chance of simply carrying bitters. fluency in korean is a big plus.
posted by chasles at 7:30 AM on May 24, 2009

Angostura bitters seems to be pretty well-known, at least within the bartending community in Korea. Apparently there are various places in the Namdaemun import stores (in Seoul) where you can get it; your brother's best bet is probably either to go to a fancy bar in Daegu and ask the bartender, ask around the expat community as chasles and smorange have mentioned, or to take a quick trip up to Seoul.

One thing to keep in mind is that bitters seems to be simply known as 'Angostura', or 앙고스트라, which might help when your brother asks around.
posted by suedehead at 8:54 AM on May 24, 2009

If I were you, I would make some for him.
posted by mens_lepidopterae at 8:57 AM on May 24, 2009

Never seen it here in Korea, but then I've never looked. As I'm sure he's aware, Daegu is one of the few cities in Korea that has a Costco -- I'd start looking there. They might be able to order it in for him if they don't stock it. He might also check online import food sites like
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 5:54 PM on May 24, 2009

Angostura Bitters = 앙고스투라 비터스

Worth putting into Naver, Daum etc. since it comes up with a bunch of matches like this, one of which may well discuss where to buy it.
posted by Busy Old Fool at 5:07 AM on May 25, 2009

Some info here.
posted by Busy Old Fool at 7:25 AM on May 25, 2009

Thanks for all the answers! My brother never went out and found his bitters because he's been too busy celebrating the birth of his extremely adorable and photogenic son. (But I'll go ahead and not that he hasn't stopped complaining about not having them...)
posted by smartyboots at 10:20 PM on June 23, 2009

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