Art of Italicus winner

Art of Italicus Aperitivo Challenge winner announced

05 June, 2023

Art of Italicus Aperitivo Challenge, the global bartending competition which aims to celebrate art-inspired aperitivo cocktails, has announced Fabrizio Candino, from Sartoria Cocktail Bar, Italy, as the global winner.

In second place was Johannes Sæterbø, from Svanen, Oslo and third place went to Valeria Coletti, from Baccarat, London.

Giuseppe Gallo, founder and CEO of Italicus, said: "This year, we had the honour of experiencing a competition with highly skilled bartenders, from their technique to the style of their presentations and their sustainable approach. We have so many talents from around the world participating in this program with the goal of improving and growing within the industry in a more sustainable world." 

The contest, now in its fifth edition, was created by Italicus Rosolio di Bergamotto to celebrate creativity in mixology, and involved bartenders from over 20 countries worldwide.

Candino hails from Palermo, Sicily, with his winning cocktail the "In-Vite” paying homage to the Mediterranean vine, incorporating the concept of invitation and conviviality. The drink involved a combination of Italicus, infused stale bread, aperitivo wine, and citron juice. 

The prize includes a mentorship program with Giacomo Giannotti, owner of Paradiso in Barcelona, which was ranked as no.1 in the 2022 edition of The World’s 50 Best Bars.

The final challenge, held in Rome on 28 May, brought together bartenders from Croatia, France, Germany, Greece, Italy, Norway, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Hungary, the UK, and the US. Each participant crafted an aperitivo using Italicus as a key ingredient. 

This year, participants were required to create their cocktails with sustainability in mind, avoiding waste and promoting the use of locally sourced ingredients.

The 12 bartenders who competed for the global title were:

  • Fabrizio Candino, Sartoria di Palermo, Italy, presenting the cocktail "In-Vite."
  • Giuseppe Valente, Cafê de la Bourse, Valencia, Spain, presenting the cocktail "Renato."
  • Valeria Coletti, Baccarat, London UK, presenting the cocktail "Bee the Action."
  • Vasileois Mylonas, bord de L'eau Drinkroom di Salonicco, Greece, presenting the cocktail "Sfumatura."
  • August Ackerot Helander, Botánico, Göteborg, Sweden, presenting the cocktail "Bonzo."
  • Filip Sarilar Bergolio, Barmen, Fiume, Croatia, presenting the cocktail "Berg'olio."
  • Louis Segonnes, Agence Speakeasy, Touluse, France, presenting the cocktail "Agora."
  • Micro Giumelli, N°5 The Bar - Grace Hotel, St. Moritz, Switzerland, presenting the cocktail "Olivotto."
  • Johannesburg Sæterbø, Svanen, Oslo, Norway, presenting the cocktail "Apples & Bergamot."
  • Máté Csizmadia, Pink del Pony Club, Budapest, Hungary, presenting the cocktail "Concerto."
  • Lolver Hernandez, Café la Trova, Miami, USA, presenting the cocktail "Eucharist."
  • Giacomo Gaggero, Truffle Pig, Berlin, Germany, presenting the cocktail "Mare."

Digital Edition

Drinks International digital edition is available ahead of the printed magazine. Don’t miss out, make sure you subscribe today to access the digital edition and all archived editions of Drinks International as part of your subscription.


La'Mel Clarke

Service isn’t servitude: the skill of hosting

La’Mel Clarke, front of house at London’s Seed Library, looks at the forgotten art of hosting and why it deserves the same respect as bartending.