Wild booze and Hedgerow cocktails – The Bitter May Queen Cocktail

The Bitter May Queen

English garden cocktail
Photo by my mate Roy Hunt

When people first drink a Negroni they are often unsure, it takes a glass or two before you fall in love. The same is often true about beer, olives and many other bitter flavours. The Bitter May Queen is much like that too, you may not be sure of the bitterness and you may even outright hate The Bitter May Queen on the first go but, if you persevere you will be rewarded. Oh how you will be rewarded! The first sip is intensely bitter thanks to the Campari and cocktail bitters, but these bitter flavours mean that the  delicate Turkish delight taste of the haw blossom brandy and the rich chocolate liqueur will linger for longer than they would just on their own.


1 part Haw blossom brandy
1 part Campari
1 part Chocolate liquor
Orange or chocolate bitters


Build in a glass over ice and stir. Lovers of orange should add four drops of Orange bitters and this will help to enhance the orange in the Campari whilst chocolate lovers should opt for four drops of chocolate bitters.