How to Drink Amaro Montenegro with Matteo Bonoli & Rudi Carraro

How to Drink Amaro Montenegro with Matteo Bonoli & Rudi Carraro

Described as the “liqueur of the virtues” by one of the most famous 19th C Italian authors, Gabriele D’Annunzio, Amaro Montenegro is Italy’s #1 Premium Amaro. Velvety, smooth, inviting, no wonder D’Annunzio and his fellow Italians love it.

It’s also full of secrets. Can one spirit be virtuous and secretive at the same time? We’ll have to ask its master herbalist and brand ambassador? I am thrilled to have Matteo Bonoli, the Master Herbalist, and Rudi Carraro, the Global Brand Ambassador, on Lush Life to introduce both Amaro Montenegro’s virtues and secrets.

In this episode, you’ll discover:

  • How many botanicals are in Amaro Montenegro and which ones are secret
  • What the M & M stands for and it has nothing to do with chocolate
  • How the Italians drink Amaro Montenegro
  • Why a Monte & Tonic is dangerous

The recipe for the Monte & Tonic

Monte and Tonic

Monte & Tonic

Prep Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 5 minutes

That's Amaro Montenegro with Tonic! Perfect for the summer and a great way to drink this popular digestive!

Ingredients

  • 50ml Amaro Montenegro
  • 150ml Fever-Tree Tonic Water

Instructions

  1. Add the Amaro Montenegro to a glass filled with ice
  2. Top up with the tonic water
  3. Garnish with orange zest

Made this cocktail?

Take a pic and tag @alushlifemanual on Instagram, Twitter or Facebook. Cheers!

Please enjoy this transcript of my interview with Matteo & Rudi. Just remember that I own the copyright in and to all content in and transcripts of Lush Life podcast, with all rights reserved, as well as my right of publicity. So if you want to use any of this, please email me!

This transcript is sponsored by:

Montenegro-logo

Susan: It’s so great to have you on the show today. I’m so excited because I really don’t know that much about Montenegro and I can’t wait to hear it from you, Rudi. I’ve been dying to have you on the show for so long, and now we can talk about it. We also have Matteo.

So why don’t you both introduce yourself? Rudi. Why don’t you go first and tell me a little bit who you are, what you do?

Rudi: Absolutely! Thank you very much, Susan. And it is a very nice to be on the show because, as you said, we’ve been planning this for a very long time. My name, as you said, is Rudi Carraro. I’m the Global Brand Ambassador for the Gruppo Montenegro, aka, I’m the personal “spread the love” for the brand all around the world.

I’d been living in London for the last 10 years, up until last August, when I decided to move back to Italy. And during my career in London, I started as a bartender in an Italian restaurant. Then I was been lucky enough to be working alongside two of my mentors, Alex Katrena and Simone Caporale at the Artisian Bar, where I learned most of the things that I know about hospitality. I am grateful for that time there. In 2016, I joined the Gruppo Montenegro with the position of UK Brand Ambassador. Since then, it has been a wonderful journey that still have has a lot to bring.

Susan: Fabulous! Matteo. Tell us who you are.

Matteo: Susan, thank you for having me in this fantastic session. My name is Matteo Bonoli and I’m the Master Herbalist for Gruppo Montenegro. I joined Gruppo Montenegro in 2010 and I became the Master Herbalist five years ago. Before joining Gruppo Montenegro, I had a fantastic experience in a winery with a distillery and I distilled mostly only raw materials.

This was a lucky thing for me, because I had the opportunity to build my personal knowledge in the spirits industry . Before doing that, I got my PhD for in Technologies and Analytical Chemistry applied to food at the University of Bologna.

Susan: I don’t know who to ask this first, but maybe we should start with what is Montenegro. So who wants to take that?

Matteo: Rudi? I think, just to break the ice. Rudi is better than me.

Susan: All right. So, so, okay. Before we get into the history, just technically, what is it when you open a bottle? What is Montenegro?

Rudi: Well, technically when we talk about Amaro Montenegro, we talk an amaro. Amaro, if you translate it into the English word, becomes bitter, but that is a misleading translation.

Because we prefer to call our Amaro Montenegro, an herbal liqueur. An herbal liqueur because, according to the original recipe, we are still producing it with a lot of different, as we call them, a lot of botanicals, which are these aromatic herbs that come from all around the world, and we need them to create Amaro Montenegro.

So this is a technical definition of what Amaro Montenegro is. If you want to talk about what it represents, well, in Italy, it represents the digestive. That everybody, at least once in their lifetime, enjoyed after their meals. The tradition of digestives, smost likely comes from the ancient Romans and Greeks that used to drink these elixirs, as they used to call them.

So these infusions and macerations of botanicals ,where they would extract all the good properties, they would use as a medicine. For this reason, they were drunk after the meal to ease digestion and help the stomach to the relieve the tiredness from the meal.

And for this reason, most likely, we are still drinking our amaro after  meal, to help with digestion and this is why Amaro Montenegro is the number one premium liqueur in Italy. Actually the number one premium amaro and the only amaro that you can find from the very top of North to the very deep South of Italy, in all the different regions and also in all the different kinds of bars, from the dive bar to high luxury hotel bar. It is really, really everywhere, but I will pass the definition to Matteo, if you want to add something to the definition of Amaro!

Matteo: I completely agree with Rudi. An amaro is a simple spirit drink with at least 15% alcohol, 15 ABV, and the main sensory note should be bitter and Amaro Montenegro, for sure, is an amaro with a particular sensory note as a 23 ABV or 23% of alcohol. So it’s pretty much in the middle of the category, but Amaro Montenegro has a very nice sensory profile, because it has a right and a perfect sweet, bittersweet balance.

In order to build an amaro, as Rudi mentioned before, the predecessor of an amaro is a vermouth. And in the past, vermouth was the main alcoholic base, a wine base, and we swapped the wine base for a neutral alcohol, in particular for Amaro Montenegro, we use sugar beet molasses alcohol, not from grains, not from sugar cane, but from sugar beet molasses.

In order to get the sensory profile of Amaro Montenegro, we dilute it in the neutral base with some botanicals, forty botanicals to be exact. forty botanicals make the final recipe of our Amaro Montenegro so special. Of course, in order to understand what Amaro Montenegro is, we need to start from the real beginning, from the founding father of Amaro Montenegro, Stanislao Cobianchi.

Susan: That was going to be my next question. Number one, you are obviously the keeper of the secret, right? You’re not going to tell us exactly what those forty botanicals are, right?

Matteo: We can share some secrets with you, Susan, with your audience, but not all, of course. We are allowed to share with you only 13 out of forty botanicals.

Susan: Ok! first let’s go back. Let’s go back to the history because that is really intriguing to me.

Rudi: I’ll be very, very happy to tell you everything about it. Everything Matteo was correct in saying that everything started with Stanislao Cobianchi, the name of the founding father of the Amaro Montenegro. He was from Bologna and he was in his twenties when his family wanted him to become a priest or to follow an ecclesiastic career.

But Stanislao Cobianchi was more of an adventurer. For this reason, he decided that he had to discover the world. So he left Bologna and set sail on a merchant ship and started a beautiful journey around the world. During this journey, Stanislao Cobianchi was collecting, tasting, and sampling different ingredients, aka botanicals, which he couldn’t in Italy or nearby Bologna where he was growing up.

He was collecting different samples of these botanicals. Imagine that from the shore close to Bologna where he left, he went to Northern Africa. He went to Turkey which at the time was called Anatolia. He went to China. He went to India. He went to Madagascar. He went to the Caribbean, Central America and also South America.

So as you can imagine, he stayed on that journey for quite a long time. Definitely, few good years and he still kept on collecting these botanicals. When he decided that he saw enough and he collected enough samples, he went back to Bologna. He had this idea to create something that no one had done before. He started to experiment in his lab. He had a lab downtown and, after a few years of experimentation in his lab, he cracked the perfect recipe for Amaro Montenegro. And from these hundred, maybe thousands of botanicals, he narrowed the number down to forty, as you know, already.

These are still the forty botanicals that we use today to create the Amaro Montenegro. So Stanislao Cobianchi created the recipe in 1885. Since then, it has never changed and we’re very, very proud of it. Actually, the history of Amaro Montenegro doesn’t stop there, because Stanislao Cobianchi gave a different name to the liquid from the very beginning.

It was called The Elixir of “Lunga Vita” – the long life elixir. He probably used the word elixir for the fact that, back in the days, like in the ancient Roman times, these kinds of medicines called elixir were made out of botanicals. Amaro Montenegro changed its name to the actual Amaro Montenegro because Stanislao Cobianchi wanted to pay homage to the Princess Elena of Montenegro who was living in Italy at the time at that time.

Between the 19th & 20th C., the beginning of the 1900’s, she would become the very first queen of Italy by marrying the King of Italy, Vittorio Emanuele III. Stanislao Cobianchi wanted pay homage to the Princess of Montenegro and to the Royal wedding, so he decided to dedicate his long life elixir to her.

He changed the name from Elixir of Lunga Vita to Amaro Montenegro and, last but not least, he also designed the bottle himself. Stanislao Cobianchi was inspired by amphora or a vial that he was using in his lab. He designed the shape, the very iconic shape, for the Amaro Montenegro bottle, which was actually very, very clever, because at that time it was very, very easy to recognize the bottle of Amaro Montenegro on the back bar of any bar and around Italy and the world

Basically this was the kind of marketing that Stanislao Cobianchi did for his fantastic liquid. Of course, the shape of the bottle that you see today is still the same, just a little bit more modern and refreshed in terms of the label, color and everything. But we definitely never changed the shape of it because it is our signature.

Susan: Of course, it’s iconic around the world. Do you know how long it took him to figure out which forty botanicals he was going to choose from?

Rudi: Well, we know that they definitely took him some years, between four and five years of experimentation, before he cracked the recipe like he wanted to.

Matteo: Rudi, you did a very good job. Of course, you explained in very deep detail the fantastic life of Stanislao Cobianchi, our founding father and the genius behind the bottle. Stanislao was born in 1862 and we know for sure that he set sail when he was a teenager at 14 or 15 and cracked on with the recipe in 1885. So maybe as a Rudi said that he took at least three, four or five years of experimentation.

Susan: Did he write this down every step of the way? Do you have history, historical documentation as to how he tried it and when he did?

Matteo: Yes. We have a huge number of papers that even a special book with the oldest experiment, of course, in a safe place. And nobody can see it. Of course.

Susan: Of course. Except for you!

Matteo: Okay, I am one of the men behind the recipe, but of course I have a team of people because Gruppo Montenegro is a pretty big spirits’ company in Italy. In order to keep the secrecy of the recipe, we do a lot in order that only a few people know how to treat the botanicals or to blend the final infusions.

For this reason, we have two separate plants. One is in South Italy where only seven people work and only a few people are allowed to go, because you need authorization. Of course, I’m allowed to go there. As Master Herbalist and the people working there know exactly how to extract only 35 out of forty botanicals, because the remaining five botanicals are extracted directly in Bologna in our plant in the headquarters where Rudi and I have our offices.

We can keep it separate, in the kind of a Chinese box way. The people working there in Teramo cannot speak with people working on Bologna, so we can guarantee ensure that the secrecy of the recipe.

I say that we are maniacs for the quality. We have strong quality control and guarantee and ensure the total quality of our bottles. I mean, not only the liquid, but even the perfection of the shape, the image of the bottle, the label has to be placed correctly on the bottle, the top, and everything must be perfect for us because we comply with a very strong certification, ISO 22,000. It’s one of the craziest the certification for food. The company, of course, as a spirit company can be considered as food because you ingest the spirit.

Susan: Of course. Now, following on from that. Can you tell me how, or as much as you can tell me, how it’s made from beginning to end.

Matteo: It’s a pleasure to me to share with you some information about the production process of Amaro Montenegro. We divide the botanicals into three main groups. citrus herbal and spice, at least for the 13 botanicals that we are allowed to share with you.

The very top note of our Amaro Montenegro is the citrus part. You can discover, perceive, and notice the sweet oranges, the bitter oranges, and some dry oranges. You can even notice the nutmeg, the cloves, and the cinnamon and these tropical botanicals traces the step of the fantastic journey of Stanislao Cobianchi around the world, because you can source these tropical spices only in the tropics.

Our cinnamon, for example, come from the Sri Lanka, the island, the very small Island, close to India, and the cinnamon, the Ceylon cinnamon, is one of the very sweetest cinnamon that you have ever eaten in your life.

The herbal part of Amaro Montenegro consists of the Artemisia family. Artemisia is the Latin name for the wormwood. Remember the amaro category comes from the vermouth and in order to build the structure, the body, of a vermouth, you need to add some Artemisia, some wormwood, in fact.

The name of the category, vermouth comes from the German name for wormwood, vermut means wormwood in German. Beyond the fantastic botanicals, we have some oregano, some marjoram, very Mediterranean botanicals, the coriander seed, the other 27 botanicals that it is absolutely forbidden to share with your audience.

Anyway in Teramo, we stock 35 out of the forty botanicals and we keep them in a private room where the humidity, the temperature, the darkness is controlled in order to preserve the freshness of aromatic molecules inside the botanicals. We grind them just a few second before extracting them and the thirty-five botanicals undergo three different destructions.

One is by boiling. The second one is a maceration and the third one is distillation. Boiling simply involves hot water, where we put the botanical for a proper time. Remember, in order to completely extract the aromatic pattern of the botanicals, you can speed up the process with heating the solution.

Of course, you need to respect the botanicals in order to not burn them. Maceration is when you steep some botanicals in an alcoholic solution. We use three different levels of a maceration. We have very small maceration, five litres, medium maceration between 200 to 300 liter over capacity, and our largest moderator are 5,000 liter of capacity,

After the maceration, we go on with distillation in order to get the heart of the aromatic botanicals. After the three step extraction, I mean, boiling, maceration and distillation, you obtain 12 mother essences, 12 mother infusions. We blend the 12 in to get only six notes. But of course the music cannot be complete without the seventh note.

Because those five botanicals that I did not mention, are, of course very secret. I cannot share with your audience the remaining five botanicals that are stored in Bologna in our headquarters. Only the Master Herbalist, that’s me, and my very closer collaborators can perform a micro reflux distillation in order to create and replicate the seventh note that makes so special Amaro Montenegro. The name of the seventh note is Premio and in English, of course, Prize.

Believe me, it is so concentrated that only one liter out of 50,000 liter of Amaro Montenegro makes the difference. There is just one drop of Premio inside a bottle. But believe me, Susan, without the Premio, Amaro Montenegro would not be Amaro Montenegro. So it takes six months for Amaro Montenegro to be done, starting from the first botanicals to the final bottle.

Susan: I believe that it’s one drop. I know you talked about it being a digestive. I was wondering, throughout the years, from the first time when it was the elixir of long life to becoming Amaro Montenegro, have habits changed, how it was consumed or was it always digestive, Rudi?

Rudi: Since the very first beginning, as I said, Amaro Montenegro was consumed as an amaro. This tradition is still very, very strong, especially in Italy and nearby that might have the same tradition, like Germany. What we see happening is that Amaro Montenegro is becoming a very versatile cocktail ingredient.

We still have a very strong digestive consumption, Amaro Montenegro drunk as a digestive. If you take that away from the Italians, I believe, they will be very upset as well. What we discovered, especially into the international markets, like the USA, Asia, Eastern Europe, UK as well, we discovered that people usually tend to not drink it as a digestive like we Italians.

They don’t go for an herbal digestive after the meal, they would rather go for a straight spirit. As you may know, for example, in the UK, like in USA, it’s very popular to have a whiskey as a digestive.

It’s going to take us a little bit more time to get people all around the world to drink Amaro Montenegro as a digestive on its own or on the rocks, the perfect serve, as we call it. We’re doing very, very well, because as I said, Amaro Montenegro is the perfect versatile cocktail ingredient, because of its different characteristics and the flavor profile.

Our idea is that, in Italy where we still have a very strong digestive consumption for Amaro Montenegro, we are now trying to get people to use this in the cocktail world. Around the world, it’s the other way around. We already had a very huge consumption of Amaro Montenegro being used in recipes and, slowly, we’re trying to get people to order it on its own or with ice, closer to the original Italian consumption as a digestive.

As I said, the tradition and the similarity of the culture in Germany is the one that likes to drink Amaro Montenegro on its own. They have a bitter, almost like Italian, palette. Around the world, when we talk about cocktails, of course, we have a very strong presence in London, because I consider London, the capital of the drinking world, so it is very, very important and we are very happy to be recognized as a very strong ingredient in the London market.

At the same time, cities like New York, San Francisco, LA, Singapore, Shanghai and Hong Kong are cities where we’re performing very, very well and also Madrid, Barcelona and Paris, where the weather really calls for a couple of recipes with Amaro Montenegro that are very refreshing and very tasty.

Susan: Then on, from that as Brand Ambassador, were you finding that Montenegro was being used in cocktails that, or should I say combined with different spirits that, you would never have thought it possible until you saw them?

Rudi: Yes, actually, to be honest with you, I always imagined that Amaro Montenegro would not work in a Tiki drink. But if you combine it with rum, pineapple orgeat and lime juice, you have a wonderful Tiki drink, where the pineapple juice really, really goes together with the flavor profile of Amaro Montenegro.

But this is just an example, the other example, and this is my baby. I call it just because I was the one who had to convince all the others that it would work with this ingredient, It’s the M and M. So it’d be Montenegro and M­­­­­­­­ezcal equal parts and you stir it down with a bit of ice, and then you serve it either as a shot that will definitely start the party or on the rocks, or you could garnish it with the lime zest. It brings the best out of both brands. You should definitely, definitely try that once if you have the chance.

Susan: So as a home bartender, I see this bottle I’ve heard of Montenegro. What are your top tips for that home bartender to start off?

Rudi: There is a drink that I think is the perfect drink to make people fall in love with Amaro Montenegro and that is the Monte and Tonic. You’re simply mixing Amaro Montenegro, one part, over three parts of tonic water. It’s like making a gin and tonic, same proportion, nothing different. We garnish that with orange zest or if you prefer an orange wheel.

Thanks to the low ABV of Amaro Montenegro, we are creating a low ABV cocktail, which is lower ABV than the gin and tonic or a vodka tonic, if you prefer. It also has much more flavor because, as Matteo said, we have forty botanicals which we treat in a very gentle way, so that they keep all their different aromas and flavors inside of them. You have a very tasty cocktail as well.

At the same time, it is very dangerous. Because the bitterness of the quinine of the tonic and the bubbles bring up all the flavor of Amaro Montenegro, The bitter side of Amaro Montenegro slowly, slowly comes to your palette. But first, you have the very nice zesty notes of the oranges and the different citruses. Then you have the spicy notes, like clove and cinnamon, that comes to your palette. Then thanks to the artemisia and quinine of the tonic and the bubbles, it lasts very long, lingering at the back of your palette. Basically you have a very, very simple drink, but at the same time, a very tasty drink.

These are the three that I prefer. So I suggest, now that the weather is getting a little bit better all over, to try this on a sunny day and just let me know what you think of it.

Susan: Absolutely! Now for our friends in Australia, where the weather is getting slightly chillier, because it’s so spicy and you smell the clove. it’s a perfect winter drink as well?

Rudi: In this case, I would strongly recommend trying the Montenegroni! I use Amaro Montenegro in the classic Negroni recipe. We use the gin still as the main alcoholic base because we need a bit of strength. Otherwise, we cannot call it Negroni. Then we use Amaro Montenegro, thanks to the artemisia and the bitter botanicals, which we can consider as a vermouth.

Then, what I like to do is add a bit of Select, which is the other aperitive in our portfolio, to complete the recipe. This is my version of the Montenegroni. At the same time, you can treat the Amaro Montenegro, which is very versatile, as a bitter, so you can create it with Amaro Montenegro, gin, and vermouth, if you prefer it slightly sweeter, but also very, very tasty.

The Negroni is the king of the aperitivo, it’s nice, it works you up, especially during the ultimate winter days. I love it. The proportion that I use for the one with Amaro Montenegro, vermouth and gin – I usually do two parts of Amaro Montenegro, one part of vermouth, and one part of the gin. The flavor of the Amaro Montenegro really comes through.

The one where I use to Select, I do fortyml Amaro Montenegro, 25ml Select and fortyml gin, so that we keep the balance of the gin and Montenegro and Select as well. We need to keep it a little bit lower, otherwise it would be too pungent and we lose the Amaro Montenegro flavor.

Susan: Matteo. I also wanted to ask you; how do you suggest drinking it? Should it be room temp from the fridge with a bit of ice? So tell me how to do it that way.

Matteo: Okay. I think any way you drink Amaro Montenegro is the best way.

Susan: Well, l knew you were going to say that from the connoisseur that you are.

Matteo: Thank you for the question! The best way to drink and taste Amaro Montenegro and to receive all the sensory features is to drink it room temperature. In order to enjoy Amaro Montenegro the most, you can drop some ice cubes in it to make it a little bit more sweet, more sensual, more velvety, more silky.

I don’t suggest drinking Amaro Montenegro too hot, apart from some hot cocktails, of course, because certain times, I like Amaro Montenegro hot. Rudi can tell you something more about the hot cocktail made with Amaro Montenegro. We also don’t suggest to drink Amaro Montenegro frozen, because the ABV is too low. if you put Amaro Montenegro in the freezer, after a while, it can become a block of ice.

You can perceive that it’s very sweet and it smells like honey, like chestnut honey. The very top note is a fragrant note of essential oil that is coming from the orange peels and then the very gentle pungency of spices, of cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, even some pimento, all spice, and something very sweet.

When I mentioned different botanicals, it doesn’t meet that those exact botanicals are used to make Amaro Montenegro. There are some botanicals that have some flowering compounds that are pretty common. For example, cinnamon, cloves, and nutmeg have some molecules in common. Amaro Montenegro reminds me of candy oranges, cider, and a little bit of a undergrowth, a very healthy note. And that to me is absolutely inviting. Amaro Montenegro invites you to drink it.

And of course, Amaro Montenegro is not super bitter. It stays in your after taste, definitely for a pretty long time. And you can perceive very herbal and vegetal notes in Amaro Montenegro for a long, long, long time.

Susan: It’s super delicious. It’s so good. Why don’t we finish off with some of the hot cocktails? You’ve had your Negroni or your Montenegroni. Could you serve it up as a hot toddy or a hot toddy kind of cocktail, Rudi?

Rudi: Yes, exactly. That’s the direction I was going as well. The hot toddy made with Montenegro; it is delicious for the same reason that Matteo just told about. It has a different flavor profile. The forty botanicals really make it easy to mix with.

What we always say at Gruppo Montenegro is that you have to be a super star to make a drink with other amaros, but you just need to be an okay home bartenders to make good drinks with Amaro Montenegro.

Susan: That’s a great line. I love that. The last thing to ask is for my top top tips for the home bartender

Rudi: Have fun, because that’s what creating drinks is all about. If it’s not your job, you’re going to have fun. If it is your job, you’re going to make people have fun. Imagine a situation in the bar where, even though it’s impossible to go to a bar now, this is what our environment, our job is all about.

Thanks to the support of people like you, spreading the word of the home bar and make your own cocktail, which helps people get more confident in what they are drinking? Because over the years, people have got a lot of more sophisticated about what they eat. Now I think the same thing is happening with drink. People are getting more sophisticated about what they drinking.

They’ve gotten to be more conscious of what they drink. I guess it is important to experiment at home, if you have the chance, If you like to try and be your own bartender or your home bartender.  An important detail for me is that you can shake with a jam jar. That’s absolutely fine. You can use a coffee cup, an Italian espresso cup. Use an espresso coffee cup as the measuring jigger. Usually Italian espresso coffee cup around the 60 milliliters.

If you don’t fill it up to the top, it’s a nice 50 millilitre measure and don’t forget to always have a bit of ice in your freezer. Otherwise you won’t be able to make this. Unless it’s winter, you want to make hot cocktails and you can try and make your homemade ingredients, lots of different books  you can find on the web that help to you and teach you out to do very simple, homemade ingredients.

You can make your own syrup. You can make your own cordial. You can make your own fermentation and trust me, you will be amazed to see how easy it is to create a simple, delicious cocktail at home. You’ll also be very, very satisfied with you showcase everything to your friends and family. You can say you made this and you should be proud of it. So yeah, that is basically it!

Susan: Fabulous. Now I always ask one question before I leave. If you could be drinking anything anywhere right now. Where would that be? So why don’t we start with Matteo?

Matteo: Definitely at the top of the mountain, because I like skiing. I like Amaro Montenegro when we’ve rested after a very hard and tough day of skiing. Unfortunately, I like skiing, but the season was completely closed this year for this situation. And this is the place that I would love to be right now.

Susan: I understand. How about you, Rudi?

Rudi: Well, to be honest with you, I was about to say on a beautiful beach, probably, the Caribbean with my Monte & Tonic in my hand, but where I would really like to be right now is in the backbar at the end of a very busy shift. In a bar after serving all different customers, all night long and having a very cold beer. That is always been one of my favorite drinks to have.

Susan: I understand that completely. Well. Listen, thank you so much for sharing all your information about Montenegro and for being on the show. I’ve learned so much, it was really great to see you Rudi, and to meet you, Matteo. I really appreciate it. Thanks again!

Rudi: Thank you very much, Susan. It’s been a pleasure for us to be here and hopefully we be able to see each other in person, because you know that whenever you would like to come and visit us, we’re more than happy to host you, so we can show you our production site in person.

Susan: Oh, my goodness. I would love that!

Matteo: Thank you, Susan. One day when the time permits to meet each other. Absolutely. Since you are so in love with Italy, you are more than welcome. And believe me, once you visit us in the plant you will completely fall in love with our brands.

Rudi: Trust me.

Susan: I already have fallen in love, so have a great day and I’ll see you in Italy.

Rudi: Ciao.

A huge thank you to Rudi and Matteo for becoming Lush Lifers. So if you want to do it the Italian way, start drinking Montenegro as a digestive. Neat with an ice cube after dinner. Otherwise try one of our cocktails of the week.

Okay. I’m sorry that I wasn’t here last week. My dad is sick and it’s tough to juggle everything. Thank goodness for lush life. It has kept me going. If you live for lush life, make sure you head out to the bars and restaurants you love and tell them how much you love them.

Theme music for lush life is by Stephen Shapiro and used with permission and Lush Life is always and will be forever produced by Evo Terra and Simpler Media productions.

Which leads me to say the wise words of Oscar Wilde, “All things in moderation, including moderation” and always drink responsibly and wash your hands and wear a mask.

Next week, we’ll be talking tequila and no, it’s not a hundred percent Agave and we’ll tell you why.

Until that time, bottoms up.

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If you live for Lush Life would you consider supporting us by buying us a coffee… Just go to buymeacoffee.com/lushlife and you can donate once or monthly to make sure we are still here every Tuesday.

Lush Life Merchandise is here – we’re talking t-shirts, mugs, iphone covers, duvet covers, ipad covers and more covers for everything!  and more!

Theme music for Lush Life is by Stephen Shapiro, and used with permission.

Lush Life is always and will be forever produced by Evo Terra and Simpler Media Productions.

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Disclaimer: Some of these posts contain affiliate links. I may receive compensation if you click on these links and buy something, but, don’t worry, it won’t cost you a dime!


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