Which cocktail would you recommend to kick-off the 2022 season? And how that cocktail born?
Massimo - Mezzatorre: My favorite season opening cocktail is the ‘Jennifer’. Aperol, grapefruit juice and prosecco, with berries and rosemary as garnish. I am particularly attached to it as it packed full of the flavours and freshness of our island. Many of the cocktails I create are inspired by our guests and the Jennifer is no different: the muse is Jennifer Lopez. During her stay once, she asked me to create something fresh and new and a few days later, the first ‘Jennifer’ was served. It is great for pre-dinner sundowners given its fizzy personality.
Federico - Il Pellicano: I suggest the classic and iconic Pelican Martini: a mix of three amazing ingredients made with Vodka Grey Goose Orange, Isolabella Mandarinetto and Lime juice. It’s a mediterranean drink with citrus flavours that capture the summer, especially if you drink it on one of our terrasses at Il Pellicano. It’s not just a historic cocktail, it also has a huge value for me: it’s my first creation and it represents the beginning of a series of signature drinks dedicated to parties, friends and Pellicano lovers.
Tell us more about you. How long have you worked with Pellicano Hotels and what do you think about our group?
Massimo: I have been working at Mezzatorre since 2006 and I am very happy about the touch Pellicano Hotels brought into our world. When they took over management in 2019, it was huge news for all of us and I am glad to say they added an extra gear to our work. Innovation, dynamism and a strong desire to always improve; every day is more challenging and stimulating and the final result is the complete satisfaction of our guests.
Federico: The 2022 season is very important as it marks my 15th year with Pellicano Hotels! Once a guest told me that I was part of the furniture. I thought it was a very nice and sincere compliment! I am still very passionate about my work here, and it is because of the same motives that bring back our guests year after year: it’s about the magic touch that gives prestige to our home, the sprezzatura and genuine Italian elegance that submerge our guests into the true dolce far niente.
Italian Aperitivo. Why is it so famous around the world? Can you describe aperitivo at the Mezzatorre and Il Pellicano?
Massimo: The Italian aperitivo is important because it means a lot to Italians. Especially now that we are finally getting back to our normal life and the possibility to meet over a glass of wine without a screen dividing us. Aperitivo time is part of our lifestyle and it’s the best moment of the day: it brings us together, we get to know one another, it open doors to new adventures! Back in the days, first dates were done over a dinner, but now we prefer an aperitivo at the bar of a nice piazzetta. Our Bar La Torre is the ideal place for Aperitivo lovers, with the sunlight falling slowly and making the atmosphere suggestive and romantic. It is always the perfect start of a magical night at Mezzatorre. On top of that, as true Neapolitan hosts, the selection is big, from traditional cocktails and wine glasses to signature creations: all of this served with delicious snacks made by our chef.
Federico: Aperitivo at Hotel Il Pellicano is a unique experience that cannot be missed. It’s a ritual for us and a true reflection of La Dolce Vita: sparkling Bellini, piano music and a sunset over the Tuscan sea. As my colleague Massimo said, we consider the aperitivo a moment that makes socialization, friendship and the carefree possible: something truly ItalianISSIMO!
Which cocktail would you be and why?
Massimo: I don’t think there is a cocktail that could describe me. This is why I decided to create a new one, that we will launch during this 2022 season. A mix of vodka, Strega liqueur, thyme and mint to create the Witch’s Martini. Vodka is clear, strong and confident like I am. The Strega liqueur stands for the magic I use while creating drinks that bring happiness (strega is the italian word for witch!). Mint is fresh, as I think to be in spirit and mind. Finally thyme, typical from Ischia, is a link to the tradition, one of the values that is of upmost importance to me.
Federico: I've had many “cocktail moments” in my life, but I think the Gin & Tonic is the best expression of who I am today. Besides being a big classic, as I am for Hotel Il Pellicano, it represents the things I love the most: summer and sun, freshness and simplicity. I invite all our guests to enjoy one of the most known cocktails in the world in our new Bar All’Aperto terrasse: it will be a unique and memorable moment, completely ‘local’ thanks to the Argintum, a gin made in the Argentario coast.
Finally, can you tell us which is your favourite place in the hotel besides the bar and why?
Massimo: My second favorite place in the hotel is our Pensatoio: suggestive, romantic, unique and exclusive. I still remember a very special wedding ceremony that was hosted there, it was the bride and groom along with the best man and the officer. It was just so intimate and special, a magnificent place for an everlasting moment.
Federico: The place I always go when possible is our private bay. It is filled with iconic pictures and is considered by most to be a little corner of paradise in Tuscany. Thanks to its blue nuances enlightened by the sun or by the full moon, it offers a moment of happiness that fulfils everyone’s hearts.