Italicus Rosolio di Bergamotto


Italian drinks are a big focus for me at the moment, with the opening of my ‘The Bassano Bar @ PizzaExpress‘ in Manchester a great example of utilising a variety of Italian styles. The rosolio aperitivo category escapes me though, until the arrival of Italicus Rosolio di Bergamotto!

I’d imagine the rosolio category isn’t one that strikes too many bells to many, so a little rundown before heading to Italicus.

Rosolio is an ancient type of Italian liqueur, deriving its name from ‘Drosera rotundifolia’, itself a species of sundew. It used to be flavoured exclusive with the herb, but now it’s known for more homemade low alcohol content spirits. The liqueur is common in Piedmont and in Southern Italy. It enjoys a special popularity in Sicily, where it has been prepared since the sixteenth century and was given to house guests as a sign of good luck.
Local ingredients are typically used depending on the region (for example Sicily with Cedro citrus fruit and fennel) and aromatized with herbs and spices.

Giuseppe Gallo has brought the category from the 1850’s of Rosolio back to the new-age with the launch of Italicus back in September 2016. Using peels from bergamots grown from Italy’s UNESCO-protected area Calabrian region and Cidros from Sicily, they are infused into cold water to release the essential oils (a process named sfumatura) prior to being blended with Italian neutral grain spirit, all within a family-owned distillery in Moncalieri, Torino.

The resulting bergamot and cedro flavoured spirit is then blended for several days with a separate maturation that contains Roman chamomile from Lazio, lavender, gentian, yellow roses and lemon balm from Northern Italy.

But how does it fare? Well below, I give to you my tasting notes –

Italicus Rosolio di Bergamotto – 20%

Very fresh lemon balm, bergamot, citrus peel and gentian coming through on the nose, followed by a naturally sweet chamomile flavour upon the palate. Notes of subtle lavender, honey, rose petal and lemon balm ride a lingering fresh finish.

A fantastic liquid on its own, but one recommended to be enjoyed in the following way;

“50/50 with Prosecco, over ice and garnished with three green olives”

Better get a bottle for the drinks cabinet, there are friends and family to impress.

© David Marsland and Drinks Enthusiast 2017. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog/sites author and owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to David Marsland and Drinks Enthusiast with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.


Mancino Tasting Notes


Vermouth is a category that I’ve touched on a couple of times in the past, although these have mainly been some of the more recognisable names such as Cinzano, as well as covering the likes of Cocchi and Sacred, but I’ve personally noticed a trend that seems to be happening here in the UK, with the rise of some crafted variations hitting our shores.

Mancino vermouth is one such brand. Arriving to us at the back-end of December last year, Mancino hails from Italy, and more specifically, world-renowned Italian bartender Giancarlo Mancino. But how did Giancarlo come to name a range of vermouth’s after himself?

In truth, there doesn’t need to be a stellar history to a brand, or an ingenious idea to make it work, instead, inspiration and dedication seem to be behind the name. So lets take a look.

Giancarlo mastered four years of research, culminating in the year 2011. During these years, he personally found forty different botanicals which he deemed to be worthy to be a part of his new spirit, travelling to the likes of India, Thailand, Vietnam and England and his native Italy. Once found, he utilised a family run traditional mill that dates back to the 1930’s, located in Piedmont, Northern Italy. It’s here that he grounds the botanicals over thirty days.

The distillery he uses after this is considered the birthplace of many wines and vermouths since 1957. The perfect place to steep the botanical extracts within sugar beet spirit (30% abv) before being added to a Trebbiano di Romagna wine base (12% abv). After being mixed, it is cooled and filtered for a week.
Once finished, it will spend the next six months within a stainless steel tank, before being bottled and labelled.

The bottles themselves adorn on the each the image of the town surrounded by King Vittorio Emanuele gold coins. Four bottling’s are currently in production – Secco, Bianco Ambrato, Rosso Amaranto and Vecchio. With this, below, I’d like to present to you my tasting notes –

Mancino Secco – 18%

Infused with 19 botanicals. Gentle aromas of sage and lemon on the nose. Soft, a little dry and hints of the Trebbiano di Romagna wine. On the palate, light, a little bold with a sour flavour that is slowly balanced out. Crisper on the finish, with a slight heat of spice on the end.

Mancino Bianco Ambrato – 16%

Infused with 37 botanicals. A fresh yet dry aroma of elderflower and chamomile on the nose. Instant sweetness on the palate creating a thick texture. Orange flavours are present, with a sharp grapefruit finish that lingers. A dry ending.

Mancino Rosso Amaranto – 16%

Infused with 38 botanicals, 10 of which are used for Amaro. Plenty of rhubarb on the nose, with softer aromas of vanilla and juniper coming through slowly. Soft on the palate, with plenty of subtle sweetness. Hints of iodine, but balance out with spices to create a dry finish.

An absolute stunning range, with a hard to place for a personal favourite. They’re, to me, just not what you expect a vermouth to be like. I’ve much admiration for other brands, but can find it hard to enjoy a couple on their own. These though, worthy of my full attention. If a tipple in a glass is not your fancy, maybe ask your bartender for one of these –

Vintage Negroni

Glass – 


Ingredients – 

30 ml Gin
20 ml Campari
50 ml Mancino Rosso Amaranto
2 dashes of The Bitter Truth Orange Bitters
2 dashes of The Bitter Truth Grapefruit Bitters

Method –

Stir with ice and strain on the rocks in a rock glass. Garnish with a wedge of orange and grapefruit twist.

or perhaps


Glass – 


Ingredients – 

40 ml Gin
20 ml Vodka
30 ml Mancino Vermouth Bianco Ambrato
2 dashes Regans’ Orange Bitters

Method –

Shake with ice and strain into a chilled coupet. Garnish with an orange twist.

Two classics to be enjoyed at home or in your favourite bar. If you have it at home though, you could say it’s your own nod to Giancarlo’s inspiration. His vermouth takes its hat off to his home town of Pignola in Southern Italy. The main square, Piazza Vittorio Emanuele, is where Giancarlo and his friends played football as children.
Oh, and if you’re lucky, there’s also the rare Mancino Vecchio. This vermouth is a variation of the Rosso Amaranto, but has been rested in a single Italian oak barrel for one year making it the first barrel aged, sweet vermouth! With only 800 bottles for the year 2013-2014 across the globe, this vermouth is only available in limited supply!

Seek and enjoy.

© David Marsland and Drinks Enthusiast 2014. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog/sites author and owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to David Marsland and Drinks Enthusiast with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Love Drinks Launch Mancino Vermouth In The UK


Love Drinks is delighted to announce the arrival of the Mancino (pronounced man-chino) range of Vermouths to its portfolio. The Mancino Vermouths are blended with the finest ingredients to make original, yet classic, recipes created by world renowned Italian bartender Giancarlo Mancino.

These recipes are made from a selection of up to forty botanicals personally selected by Giancarlo over four years of research. The botanicals are ground in a traditional mill that has been in use since the 1930’s then the extracts are steeped in sugar beet spirit before being added to a Trebbiano di Romagna wine base. After a week long filtration process, the liquid spends six months resting until the Vermouth is ready for bottling in small batches.

In 2011 Giancarlo started the steeping process in a small family run establishment in Piedmont, Northern Italy. The distillery is considered the birthplace of many exquisite wines and vermouths and has been in operation since 1957. There are three core Vermouths in the range, a Secco, Bianco Ambrato, the Rosso Amaranto, and rumour has it there’s a Vecchio (aged for 1 year) vermouth soon to be available in very small quantities.

The Secco is infused with 19 botanicals and looks clear, pale yellow with a hint of green. Breezy, clear and super dry it’s perfect for dry Martini.

Infused with 37 botanicals the Bianco Ambrato has an amber hue, ideal for a Vesper or on the rocks with a wedge of orange.

The Rosso Amaranto is made with 38 botanicals and is a dark Imperial Amaranth red. Perfect for a Negroni or sweet Manhattan.

Mancino vermouths are now available to buy through Coe Vintners 750ml priced as follows:

Mancino Secco 18% abv  £16.45 & vat

Mancino Bianco 16% abv  £17.17 & vat

Mancino Rosso 16% abv  £17.17 & vat