Among the main ingredients of some of the most loved and drunk cocktails all over the world, there is one having very ancient origins and, above all, origins in Turin: Vermouth.
Fruit of the experiments and intuition of herbalist Antonio Carpano, Vermouth or Vermut was born in 1786 in a small store in Turin, from the fortunate union between wine and an infusion of herbs and roots.
In fact, its name derives from the term Wermut with which, in German, is called Artemisia Maggiore. The latter is a plant having digestive powers with which Antonio Carpano has aromatized white wine, together with other herbs, spices and flowers to which is added alcohol and sugar.
An important intuition of the young Turinese, who, thanks to the blend of herbs and aromas of the territory, made white wine more delicate and appreciable, also meeting the tastes and palates of ladies.
Today, it is classified as a liqueur and flavored wine and, since 2017, Vermouth di Torino is a registered geographical indication, as well as a source of Savoy pride.
The success of Vermouth, from the court of the Savoys to our days
Talking about Savoy pride, it seems the success of Vermouth is also due to the favor of King Vittorio Amedeo III. In fact, the history of the most famous fortified wine in the world is indissolubly bound to the Savoy family.
If the first intuition of young Antonio Carpano was to make the strong Piedmontese wine more tasty and appreciable by infusing it with herbs and aromas of the territory, the second one could be defined as a real and proper marketing strategy.
Carpano had a case of Vermouth delivered to the court. King Vittorio Amedeo III, and with him all of Turin’s nobility, were quite impressed. From that moment on, the young Carpano’s Vermouth and his small workshop took off, giving rise to a drink of worldwide success. A success that has come down to our own day, so much so that today a plaque in Piazza Castello commemorates that day.
Vermouth: from Turin to the whole world
Vermouth over the centuries has remained faithful to the original. Composition of 75% wine and selected choice of aromas. The installation dedicated to Punt e Mes, the Vermouth born in 1870, also belongs to Carpano.
One point of sweet and half of bitter is the meaning of the Piedmontese name and international brand, celebrated by Armando Testa’s campaign with a superimposed sphere (the point) and half sphere (the half), now positioned in the traffic circle in front of the old Porta Susa train station.
Today, Vermouth is used above all as a fundamental ingredient in aperitif cocktails, including Martini, Americano, Manhattan and Negroni. There are many types, distinguished by color (red, white and rose) and by taste (sweet, dry, extra dry and chinato).
Smile Tree’s Vermouth in Turin
Just like the young Turinese herbalist Carpano, we at Smile Tree like to experiment, mixing flavors and aromas of the territory to create unique products in which tradition and innovation come together. A product such as Fumigà, Smile Tree’s Vermouth, born from an idea of our barman Adrian Margineanu.
Fumigà Vermouth gives to the Turin drink par excellence a new and complex taste, within the classic and modern mixing.
Starting from the traditional blend of wine and Piedmontese artemisias, such as gentile and romana, the bouquet is completed by rose, lavender, cardamom, bitter orange, cloves and smoked black tea.
If you’re curious to try the unique and unmistakable flavor of Fumigà Vermouth, visit us at Smile Tree in Turin’s Piazza della Consolata.