How We Make Our Bitters: Behind the Scenes with Token

How We Make Our Bitters: Behind the Scenes with Token

Token's Bitters are crafted with love at Edmonton's Hansen DistilleryThis is where the magic happens. Each batch of Token's Bitters are made with great care, and we attend to every detail in order to make the finest products we can. Overseeing the entire process is Token's flavour master: Cam O'Neil.


Cam O'Neil left, and Kris Sustrick of Hansen Distillery placing a bag of fresh lime leaves into a jar to create Token's Whyte Lavender Bitters.

Step one of the bitters making process is to source our ingredients. We support small local farmers and businesses whenever possible, and always opt for organic ingredients. Our favourite place to stock up on essentials is the Old Strathcona Farmers Market.


Once we've sourced our ingredients, (usually a fragrant combination of fresh and dried fruits and spices), we head back to Hansen to begin the bitters making process. We combine all the spices, roots, barks and other flavourings into a jar and add in a high-proof spirit. This will sit for about two weeks and will need to be shaken daily to ensure the flavours infuse properly and evenly.



Cam is adding fresh cherries into a pot for steeping. These will be used in our Token Ritchie Cherry flavour.

After two weeks of steeping, the mixture is ready to be strained and cooked. The spirits are poured into a clean jar using cheesecloth then sealed. We heat the liquid on a stove with water and then put that entire mixture (water and spirit-soaked ingredients) into a separate jar. Then we let this mixture sit for one week.

Patience is key in the bitters making process.

Three weeks into the process is when it all starts to come together. We strain out the solids then combine the infused liquid with the water. Then, depending on the flavour of the bitters, we add a few final touches – honey, molasses, or maple syrup, to name a few.  Once added, we shake it until the sweetener is fully dissolved and let it sit for another three days. Finally, the bitters are ready to bottle.

Token's Strathcona Orange flavour bottled up and ready to go.

And there you have it! We hope you enjoy these bitters in your beverages as much as we enjoyed making them. Click here to discover where to buy Token Bitters.