Gammel Dansk is originally Danish digestive bitter, but nowadays produced in Norway. It was developed in 1964 at Roskilde by Danish Distillers to compete for Jägermeister and other bitters imported from abroad. Gammel Dansk is produced from 29 herbs, spices, berries and flowers. The recipe is naturally a secret but it is said to include at least rowanberries, star anise, nutmeg, anise, ginger, cinnamon and orange peel.
Gammel Dansk was very popular from 60th to 70th in Denmark. It was used very commonly after meals, even after breakfast as a digestive. At 80th with the growth of healthy lifestyles, bitter sales declined in the way of mild alcohols. But Gammel Dansk is still very common in Denmark and by far the most popular digestive bitter there. In 2014 the norwegian owner Arcus decided to move the production of the bitter to Norway. A 50cl bottle costs 14.99€.
The nose is fresh and aromatic with some anise and licorice nuances. Taste is very dry and very bitter, even aggressively bitter. The bitter taste lasts a long time. There is plenty of nutmeg, cinnamon, licorice, quinine, black pepper and rowanberry juice. Aftertaste is very long and after a few minutes has a kind of rowanberry taste on the mouth. It reminds quite much of Fernet-Branca (without the minty flavour) and has the same flavours than Jägermeister, but is less sweet and much more bitter. It’s excellent and well done digestive bitter. I enjoyed it at room temperature, but it could be used also on cocktails instead of cocktail bitters.