I Met the ‘Bitterest Man in the World’ in Portland
I met the self proclaimed 'bitterest man in the world' Steve Corman. I believe he is!
I need to give you some background. In my couple of days off, all I basically did was go around Portland and eat and drink. It was wonderful. At all the bars (listed at the end of this story) was this cute little pitcher. Jen was in LOVE with it and every bar said that they got it at Vena's Fizz House. Mmmmm.
So, off we went to find that pitcher at 345 Fore Street in Portland. Found it! CLOSED! But Steve (the owner) was watering plants and said we could go in for retail, but not the bar. Perfect!
That's where we learned a lot about Steve and how he got title of 'the bitterest man in the world'.
That's because Steve (who will be 62 in October!) has about 200-300 drops of bitters every single day!
That got our attention. What exactly is a bitter? According to Vinepair:
Bitters are made by infusing a neutral spirit with any number of aromatics, including spices, tree bark, roots, seeds, fruits, etc. Since before the cocktail itself, bitters were originally developed and marketed for medicinal purposes, with ingredients generally thought to impart good health preserved in a neutral liquor. As with most marketing campaigns, health claims began to be a bit outlandish—restoring youthful vigor, curing malaria, e.g.—but thankfully for all involved, bitters eventually found their way from the medicine cabinet to the liquor cabinet.
I didn't dive into the bitters...but it was fascinating and made me want to return when the actual bar is open.
Bars visited in Portland in 36 hours:
- The Porthole
- Blyth and Burrows (thanks Lou!)
- Bill's Pizza
- Central Provisions
- The Thirsty Pig