History Behind The Making Of The Iconic Birra Moretti


On a pleasant evening, breeze flowing, Birra Moretti in your hand, have you ever wondered what led to the making of it? You might not realize it, but this iconic brand that’s part of Heineken now, has an intriguing past, with legends around the brand’s icon.

The year was 1859 when Luigi Moretti, a young man from a rich Italian merchant family, decided to inaugurate his Beer And Ice factory.

Udine in the 19th century, a small town not unfamiliar to rebellions, uprisings, and political unrest, saw high demand for beer by soldiers camped in the town. Luigi saw the opportunity and grabbed it. He opened a brewery and started manufacturing what was to be known as Birra Moretti.

Luigi made his first sale in the year 1860, and since then, the recipe has largely remained unchanged.

The Legend Behind The Birra Moretti Icon

The man with a huge mustache that we now see as quintessential to the brand made its first appearance in 1950 at an international beer fair. Lao Menazzi, a brewer owner, saw the picture in an advertisement and was immediately drawn to it. In 1952, Menazzi launched the image as his own, after giving it a retouch. The original picture featured a Bavarian man, and Menazzi tweaked it to look like an Italian man.

Other stories have since sprouted up. Some say that the picture was of a Tyrolean farmer, clicked by Erika Groth – Schmachtenberger in 1939 during her trip to Italy. While some still claim that the mustached man was a customer at the brewery, whom Moretti’s nephew took a liking to. Apparently, he was asked to pose for a photograph, to which he agreed only after receiving a pint of Birra Moretti.

Does life imitate art or art life? After the logo was released, arguments started arising. The storm that Birra Moretti brewed was that everyone started seeing their own self in the mustached Italian drinker. But, of course, nothing could be proven.

It was so commonplace and relatable that the icon seems to be inviting everyone to enjoy a pint while getting business done. The picture took a life of its own. Now it carries a feel that makes us remember the brand’s name, Birra Moretti, as soon as we see it, and makes us thirst for one.

The brand’s iconic logo made an imprint in advertising history. It became so popular that people started recognizing the brand solely from the picture. And this is how the trend of using real and relatable people in advertisements began.

Some tell us to never judge a book by its cover. To them, I say no, thank you! The entire purpose of a cover is for people to judge the content before buying it. Birra Moretti has no problem asking people to judge its brand by its logo. The Italian mustached man has become and remains iconic.

So, raise a glass, a bottle, or a keg, and thank heavens for Luigi Moretti for introducing the Italian delight!

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