In recent years, regional distilleries from Germany have often looked beyond national borders and discovered their penchant for gin (England) or whisky (Scotland); in addition to a large number of beverages that are not necessarily outstanding, very good distillates have also been produced, which now operate on the world market and yet in reality come from small regional distilleries. The distillery Schnitzer from Traunstein didn’t look that far and found what it was looking for in Italy.
An Alpine bitter liqueur
In the sixties of the last century, master distiller Hans Schnitzer learned his distillery trade in Italy, so it was perhaps only natural to let the Italian experience influence him. From there he brought the original recipe for the Amaro back to his Bavarian homeland and refined it with regional ingredients. The result was a tasty bitter liqueur, which is still produced by hand according to the original recipe in the Chiemgau foothills of the Alps. Fruity citrus aromas meet the spice of alpine herbs. This is how the first German organic Amaro gets its taste.
“Aromatic herbs and medicinal plants from the Alps, fresh citrus fruits from the south and mild Bavarian spring water give our bitter aperitif its complex taste.”
Success through detours
But the beginning was not easy, the old distillery had to be saved. So the four friends had to go. They have known each other since kindergarten and went to school together. They came, burned, drank. For two years they went every other weekend to the Chiemsee for tasting. Three years ago they realized their idea of making their own liqueur. At first all four had no idea of how to distil and make liqueurs. One architect, one business economist, the other two coming from marketing, all are in their mid to late thirties. And then there’s the liqueur, which is more difficult to make than gin, which German hobby burners now make in every garage. So it wasn’t to be expected that something special would come out of it, even if Max’s grandfather was there to help and advise him
The result: first, Mondino, the aperitif. Less sweet than Campari, less bitter than Aperol, fruity, with orange and grapefruit from Amalfi, gentian, rhubarb, a little turmeric, 18 percent alcohol. One drinks it pure, as a spritz with Prosecco or as Negroni with Wermuth and Gin.