A brilliantly diverse category, encompassing the monastic liqueurs like Chartreuse alongside Italian classics such as Amaretto and Sambuca, cult drinks like Jagermeister and old stagers like Kummel. Many herb liqueurs contain dozens of different ingredients, the exact constitution and combination of which is invariably a jealously-guarded secret.
The craze for more varieties of bitters shows no sign of abating (hurrah!). These Creole bitters from the fanatics at The Bitter Truth look set to continue the revival of a bartending tradition that looked dead and buried a few years ago.
Cynar (pronounced chinar) is a much loved italian bitter liqueur, named for the artichokes (Cynara Scolymus) that are the main flavouring ingredients. Great over ice or in cocktails - try switching it in for Campari in a Negroni for an interesting take on a classic drink.
Carlshamns Flaggpunsch is a Swedish punsch, the traditional liqueur restorative beloved by Scandinavian types and an almost legendary cocktail ingredient, which is highly sought-after due to its popularity with early bartenders including Jerry Thomas.
High quality mint liqueur from French artisan producer. All the Briottet range have proper 'real' fruit (or, in this case, herb) flavour integrity - they taste like the fruit / herb itself, not some confected approximation. Highly recommended.
A deeply coloured Creme de Violette from Briottet. Made by steeping violet flowers in spirit before dilution and sweetening its a keystone of classic cocktails, and a must for those after the perfect Aviation.
A liqueur combining two buzz flavours: hibiscus and green tea, both of which are increasingly popular in trendy bars - use this to mix up some exotic libations in the comfort of your own home - we suspect it might go rather well with a good silver tequila.
Hugely popular sambuca from Luxardo made by macerating aniseed & elderberries in neutral spirit before maturation in oak vats. Serve 'alla mosca' - flamed with three floating coffee beans in the glass.
A famed French aperitif liqueur flavoured with gentian root, giving a spicy, fruity and delicately bitter drink. Traditionally it's served neat, with tonic or with orange juice as well as a flavour in many cocktails. According to the manufacturers in Switzerland it's also enjoyed with Coke...
A 50cl bottle of this gorgeous elderflower liqueur. Delicious chilled on the rocks and, given bartending demi-god Simon Difford's input into its creation, it's no surprise that St Germain is versatile enough to star in a host of cocktails too.