Inside Fernet Branca’s Factory in Milan, Italy

Today the New York Times posted a story about Count Niccolò Branca di Romanico – the leading royalty of the Fernet Branca‘s family dynasty and holder of the secret recipe for the Fernet Branca digestive that has achieved a cult status with waiters & bartenders in New York, San Francisco, and it’s spreading…

Did I forget to mention that Fernet Branca is headquartered in Milan, and that I have pictures from an exclusive tour I took of the factory? Non?

Here’s a sneak peek – if you’re interested in seeing more, let me know in the comments. Fernet lover? Hater? Don’t know what we’re talking about?

The picture below depicts a wheel of spices that go into the Fernet Branca secret recipe. So secret, in fact, that they readily admit many of the spices they display in the wheel are decoys and are not actually included in the final recipe. One ingredient they do confirm is saffron, as evidenced by that huge jar right in the center.

The 40 Spices in Fernet Branca, Fernet Branca Factory in Milan, Italy

About these ads


  1. Michele C. says

    Wow, would love to see more! Do they not normally let people take tours? I have been getting more into amari and digestivi with every year that passes here. I’ve discovered some lovely Calabrian amari.

  2. says

    My father prescribed Fernet Branca for anything and everything. When I got married my home was “Fernet-less” and my father was excited to give me a gift – it was a bottle of Fernet Branca! I sorry but I can’t believe anyone actually drinks the stuff voluntarily! That bottle I still have 22 years later and is used by my husband to play jokes on his friends. I’m sure it’s good for you but I can’t get it past my lips!

  3. rodney says

    I finally bought a bottle after seeing Anthony Bourdain enjoy it (in Turkey, I think)… yes, sad to admit. Anyway, I love Campari, which most people I know think tastes absolutely awful. Well… my first Fernet felt that way to me. And yet eventually I found myself buying a second bottle some time later.

  4. says

    Let’s just say I have no love for the stuff. However, after a few years in Italy, I’ve acquired a taste for Campari and Aperol, so anything’s possible…. though I doubt I’ll ever be glugging it into my coffee like the locals. ::shudders::

  5. Ms. Adventures in Italy says

    I will definitely be putting some more pictures up – but it looks like the majority of my readers are not fans, hehe. It is definitely an acquired Italian taste, like chinotto.

  6. Ken Savino says

    I have been drinking Fernet, since introduced to me by my family in Italy over thirty years ago. Never thought the strength of the U.S. version was quite as good. Add to an espresso or with a bit of hot water – great way to finish a big dinner!

  7. Canary says

    I LOVE Fernet!! But maybe it’s just cuz I’m in the SF experimental side of the population. To me it tastes like melted ricola cough drops, which i absolutely love. It’s minty, warm, spicey and bitter, some of my favorite flavors. More pics please!!

  8. Yenina V says

    Hello! I am an Argentinean living in the US and I love Fernet! One of the things I want to do during my trip to Italy this summer is to take a tour of the headquarters, how do I sign up for one? I sent an email on their official webpage, but I have not heard back from them :( I do not want to miss this awesome opportunity!

Leave a Reply