One of the world’s oldest bitters, Riga Black Balsam, launches two exciting innovations

November 27, 2020

Although Riga Black Balsam can be considered one of the world’s oldest herbal bitters brands, with its origins dating back to 1752, it has created several innovations in recent years. Even in this extraordinary year, two new products are being offered to lovers of the legendary drink: Limited Edition Riga Black Balsam Chocolate & Mint, as well as two RTD cocktails in a contemporary and sustainable format – cans.


“As Riga Black Balsam represents one of the oldest beverage categories in the world, the way it is consumed has changed: from being enjoyed as a shot as an aperitif or with coffee through to countless cocktail variations nowadays,” said Māris Kalniņš, Global Brand Director of Riga Black Balsam.

“By listening to our consumers and following the global trends in beverage development, we have created a bitter with a gentle and refreshing taste, which is provided by the notes of milk chocolate and sweet peppermint. We have also reduced the strength of the drink to 30% ABV, similar to our popular balsam with black currant and cherry flavours. This limited edition will be suitable for those who enjoy sweeter drinks, as well as it will be great addition to classic and hot cocktails,” said Māris Kalniņš.

At the same time, the brand has begun filling its popular RTD cocktails in 330 millilitre cans. The new packaging of black currant and cherry-flavoured cocktails is gradually rolling out to markets replacing cocktails in glass bottles. In this format, these beverages will be more convenient to use, as well as more environmentally friendly. Glass waste, when released into the environment, cannot decompose even over a million years. Metal cans can be sorted and are biodegradable over several years.

Riga Black Balsam is available in more than 30 countries; in 2018, the brand was launched in the UK and this year in the United States with renewed vigour. Different variations of the drink are available: Riga Black Balsam Black Currant, Riga Black Balsam Cherry and Riga Black Balsam Espresso. In May 2020, a premium class version of the drink was launched – Riga Black Balsam XO, which is complemented by the addition of exquisite French brandy. The brand has won more than 100 awards in international competitions; in 2020, Riga Black Balsam was repeatedly recognized as the Most Unique Brand in the Baltic States.

Amber Beverage Group is a holding company that has grown from its original core production business established in 1900, to become the global company that unites over 2,000 employees in almost 20 companies across four continents. ABG operates internationally from its head office in Luxembourg through its production and distribution companies in Russia, Mexico, the UK, Australia, Austria and the Baltics. It is a leading producer, distributor, logistic provider and retailer of alcoholic beverages.

For further media information or hi-res images, please contact:

Sabine Rutka, Group Communication Lead, Amber Beverage Group


Phone: +371 26 198 363



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