Amaro Tosolini

Bepi Tosolini's secret recipe turns 80

by Lavinia Colonna Preti
Amaro Tosolini (UD) — Friuli Venezia Giulia Secrets

A sartorial amaro that is born "slow", along the Roggia canal in Povoletto, near Udine, between bain-marie stills and infusions that smell of herbs from the Friulian lagoon, where everything is made by hand to aim for the excellence of aromas and emotions.

The history of Tosolini begins in 1943 when the young Bepi Tosolini decided to bet on something revolutionary for the time in Italy: to make grappa, then a product of peasant tradition, a drink as noble as its “cousins” distilled spirits beyond the Alps.

He inaugurated his first distillery and focuses everything on quality with the dream of putting all the aroma of the original raw material in a bottle. A challenge that led him to subsequently open the largest grappa distillery in Italy in Udine in the 1950s, where he refined his experiments.

Amaro Tosolini (UD) — Friuli Venezia Giulia Secrets
Amaro Tosolini (UD) — Friuli Venezia Giulia Secrets

We have chosen to remain “artisans” in order to be able to follow the entire production of our spirits and bitters step by step, just like our grandfather did.

(Lisa, Giuseppe and Bruno Tosolini)

There are many innovations that he brings to the sector such as replacing the oak aging barrels with those of ash, a wood better able to capture the aromas, and creating his own personal distillation process, the so-called “Tosolini method”, with manually operated according to tradition steam stills to transport alcoholic vapors without losing intensity.

In 1973 he moved the distillery to Povoletto where he continued his search for perfection by also introducing new bain-marie stills into production which allowed no direct steam on the raw material.

Amaro Tosolini (UD) — Friuli Venezia Giulia Secrets

His vision begins to become reality: in 1984 the law authorizes the distillation of grapes (previously only marc was allowed) and thus Tosolini’s famous MOST® acquavite was born. Bepi has finally managed to bottle the wonderful aromas of grapes and Italian spirits, year after year, enter the elite of the most renowned “spirits” in the world.

Today, while continuing to innovate, in the elegant Povoletto distillery everything is still produced by hand, from the vineyard to the bottle, and witnessing the distillation ritual is truly a magical experience.

Amaro Tosolini (UD) — Friuli Venezia Giulia Secrets
Amaro Tosolini (UD) — Friuli Venezia Giulia Secrets

Like seeing the Master Distiller who welcomes the fresh and highly selected pomace in the morning that comes from the vineyards of Collio and Colli Orientali del Friuli and then passes into the picturesque manually operated steam boilers and then to cutting, filtration and maturation in barrels, until you see the tiny droplets of distillate coming out of the stills. Suffice it to say that 100 kilos of pomace yield only 3 bottles of grappa.

MOST® acquavite is one of the ingredients with which one of the flagship labels of the distillery is produced, the Amaro Tosolini, the most awarded in the world, coming first at the World Liqueur Awards 2022.

Amaro Tosolini (UD) — Friuli Venezia Giulia Secrets
Amaro Tosolini (UD) — Friuli Venezia Giulia Secrets

The amaro, the result of 80 years of history and passion of the company, comes from an artisanal infusion prepared with an exclusive blend of spices and herbs with Mediterranean flavors in grape spirit and pure water from the Julian Alps according to Bepi Tosolini’s secret recipe, transcribed by hand original and today even kept in a safe.

A refined liqueur that also smells of the herbs of the Marano Lagoon – such as Salicornia, Limonio, Sea Fennel, Marine Absinthe, or the precious Santonego – and which then rests in wooden carats which give it a unique and unmistakable nuance.

Amaro Tosolini (UD) — Friuli Venezia Giulia Secrets
Amaro Tosolini (UD) — Friuli Venezia Giulia Secrets

Today it is the third generation of the company, the grandchildren Lisa, who follows export sales and marketing, Giuseppe in charge of domestic sales, and Bruno, Master Distiller, who carry on the family tradition with the same “vice” of perfection as their grandfather. An example?

For the cocktails prepared with Amaro Tosolini they even created their own tonic, obviously “perfect”, the Gilson Med Tonic Water, which is used for the Spritz Med prepared with 30cc Amaro Tosolini, 200cc Gilson Med tonic water, ice and a slice of orange, among the official drinks of the Barcolana of Trieste (and it also brings good luck since “their” boat won the regatta).

Amaro Tosolini (UD) — Friuli Venezia Giulia Secrets
Amaro Tosolini (UD) — Friuli Venezia Giulia Secrets

How to taste it? Obviously in the distillery where the company outlet is located, by purchasing on the online shop, or in the best restaurants and cocktail bars on the planet.

The Secret

Over the years the Bepi Tosolini distillery has developed many collaborations with other Made in Italy artisan companies. Like the one with the main Italian fashion designers which in the 90s led to the creation of limited editions of Bepi Tosolini MOST® acquavite, each “designed” by a great stylist. The ones by Missoni, Marinella, Borsalino, and Raffaella Curiel are truly wonderful (for info

Useful Info

Distilleria Bepi Tosolini
Via della Roggia
33040 Povoletto, Udine
Tel. +39 0432 664144

For info: +39 0432 664144,

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