Letherbee Distillers

Malort 'Besk'

Malort 'Besk'

Malort Besk Letherbee Distillers
  • Liqueur made in the style of the traditional Swedish herbal spirit bësk (which means ‘bitter’ in Swedish) by Letherbee Distillers in Chicago, Illinois
  • Formerly known as Letherbee Malört (see also Chicago’s iconic bësk brand, Jeppson’s Malört—a spirit notoriously used as a regional “bartender’s handshake”)
  • 6 Botanicals including wormwood, gentian root, grapefruit, juniper, star anise, elderflower
  • Base of neutral grain distillate made from corn
  • Developed in collaboration with Robert Haynes of Apologue Liqueurs (also based in Chicago)
  • Wormwood dominates with supporting notes of grapefruit hard candy, anise, citrus peel and baking spice
  • 50% ABV

Although this spirit category is above average in its use of bitterness, Letherbee’s version is just approachable enough to be used in extremely adventurous cocktailing applications.


United States
Spirit Type:
Spirit Sub Type:
Botanical / Floral / Herbal / Root / Spiced

Sizes Available

Full Bottle US-XLB-10-NV 12/750ml
Flasks US-XLB-10-NVR 12/200ml

Tasting Notes

Swedish for “bitter,” Bësk is an intensely potent wormwood spirit which enjoys shocking popularity among Chicago’s hospitality industry. As good citizens of their city, Letherbee pulls no punches in their Bësk, bolstering the wormwood’s bite with the similarly caustic addition of gentian root. Despite a bitterness which seems to linger for days, Letherbee miraculously manages to slip subtle but distinct notes of elderflower, juniper, and star anise into the palate. The spirit is at once challenging and delicate—a real achievement in the world of bitters—and all the more impressive at a whopping 50% ABV