Jungle Juice

11 March, 2016

He says: “The current mission of Rossi D’Asiago is to redefine this old opinion of sambuca and revitalise the liqueur, making it cool again to every generation. To achieve this, we have invested heavily in marketing and have trained our bartenders to develop new recipes to excite and intrigue new and returning consumers.

“The Volare consumer is mainly the bartender, which means we have had to design the bottle in a style that is perfect for the busy barman.

“Last year saw us rejuvenate the Volare brand with an aim to satisfy the bartender – that included extra grip, a restyled label, an elegant cap and Pro-Pour technology,” he says.

“The liqueur market continues to be very competitive and to succeed it is vital to build trustful relationships with the trade in order to understand the real needs of the final consumer.

“We are experiencing increased interest in liqueurs from the Asian market, while the UK and German markets continue to see strong growth with more and more consumers enjoying sambuca in the home.

“Due to this, we have developed a 50cl Antica sambuca that has been selling really well in a number of retail chains,” says Dal Toso.

He claims liqueur consumption in Canada is increasing. “We’ve been distributing our limoncello in the region for more than 20 years and last year we recorded double digit-growth,” he says.

Dal Toso goes on to say that the company’s main objective is to grow its presence in travel retail. “We recently exhibited at TFWA World Exhibition, where we had a number of positive meetings, and are in the process of building upon our distribution in Europe, Asia and the Middle East.”


For Molinari, the biggest export market is Germany. The average retail price for Molinari in the off-trade is between 15% and 45% higher than other brands, he claims. In 2015 the consumption of sambuca in the off-trade has grown 2% in volume, while Molinari has grown 4.5%, representing more than 30% of the category growth.

“In Italy, sambuca consumption in the MAT to November 2015 has shown a decrease of nearly 2%,” says Mario Molinari. “Other sub-categories of the liqueurs universe suffered negative performance – Limoncello decreased more than 5% and cream liqueurs decreased approximately 4.5%.”

Molinari claims a market share in the Italian on-trade of more than 80%. He talks of a specific initiative – Bartendency, a TV bartender talent show that will broadcasted by Fox.

“Bartendency will have two judges – Alessandro Procoli, bartender and owner of the Jerry Thomas Project in Rome, and La Mario, an Italian radio broadcaster known at national level for her radio programmes on Kiss Kiss and M20 radio channels as well for her collaboration in TV programmes such as Festival of Sanremo, La Talpa and X-Factor. The winner of this edition will be brand ambassador of Molinari for one year,” says Molinari.

Underberg brand manager Michael Griesel confines himself to just talking about two products, one of which is Xuxu, a ‘trend spirit’, described as: “A sinful seduction made of sun-ripened strawberries with a hint of crystal-clear vodka and refreshed with a dash of lime.” Griesel says it is one of the most successful spirits on the German market.

He also extols Tiffin, which is described as a premium tea liqueur said to have been distilled from selected premium teas and offering a “unique bouquet and a light refreshing taste of premium tea”. It has an alcohol content of 24% abv.


Roberto Hidalgo, managing director of Ancho Reyes, the Mexican chile liqueur made from ancho chillis steeped in a sugar cane spirit, believes it’s an exciting time for the liqueurs category, with bartenders and consumers looking for innovative and quality ingredients in today’s resurgence of cocktail culture.

Keywords: liqueurs, Molinari

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