Still produced in accordance with the original recipe, Byrrh is created by macerating South America Quinquina, coffee, bitter orange, colombo and cocoa in Muscat Mistelles, which is then matured in oak casks. The fruit-forward wine lends natural sweetness, so no additional sugar is needed, and also provides Byrrh Grand Quinquina with its refreshing balance of fruit and spice. Byrrh is traditionally served as an aperitif, chilled with a slice of lemon.
In 1873 Brothers Pallade and Simon Violet, itinerant drapers, decided to take advantage of the wine fever in the region to develop an apéritif wine flavoured with cinchona. They mixed dry wines and mistelles and initially marketed the resulting product as a health drink or tonic. Rebranding the brothers’ aperitif as a health drink got around this problem, and Byrrh was sold in pharmacies.