Fernet Branca is so Chouette!
February 25, 2013 § 1 Comment
In the 1980s, Americans discovered Jagermeister. Now Jager has been around for more than a century, but a lean, mean marketing machine of a man, Chuck Giometti, decided to put Jager in the hands of every college kid in the US, and with the use of Jager girls and chilling machines, he did it.
Where did we drink Jager? In New Orleans on the street, in New York at KGB, in San Francisco at Dr. Bombay’s, in Oakland at the Omni, and at home, never far from the freezer. You must drink it chilled. Imagine my surprise when I visited Germany in 1993, very excited at the prospect of drinking Jager in the motherland and was met with sideways glances by my German friends.
In Germany, Jagermeister is considered the drink of old men, and is used as a digestif. So when I asked for Jagermeister, it was assumed that, well, I needed digestive aid. I found this postcard when I returned from Europe and it really cheered me up.
About 10 years ago, folks began to approach us at shows and say “Fernet Branca?” At first I didn’t know what they were talking about. We learn a lot from our clients, and thankfully, one explained to us that it was an Italian digestif. Over time we learned that when people asked for Fernet Branca, it was safe to assume they were bartenders by trade – today’s mixologists. Asking for Fernet Branca at a bar is code for “I am also a bartender.”
Eventually, we met the man responsible for putting Jagermeister and later Fernet on the map. Mr. Giometti contacted us and asked us to help him assemble a collection of original Fernet Posters. And so we did. Today, he promotes Absente from Micel Roux, Rhum Barbancourt, and Prichards Whiskey to name a few.
Anyway, here is our one and only Fernet Branca poster. I LOVE this piece. It was printed in the 1960s and suggests how cool or “chouette” the liqueur was then. The poster is an original, and we consider it to be in Fine (or A-) condition. The image is a summer image, evoking memories of a long cool drink under an umbrella. Oh happy place, I’m ready for summer already!