Branca Menta is a digestif amaro invented in the mid 1960's when young drinkers began asking for mint syrup in their Fernet Branca. It contains peppermint and menthol in addition to the secret Fernet Branca herbal blend, and is 80 proof like Fernet Branca. In Texas, at least, Fernet Branca is easy to find, but Branca Menta is near impossible.
Branca Menta is a medium brown color and opaque. It's intensely minty, with not only mint, but the cooling effect of menthol as well. It's a step sweeter than Fernet Branca, which masks the firm bitterness, pushing it to the finish.
Both Branca Menta and Fernet Branca are popular in Argentina, where it's commonly mixed with Coca Cola. A good ratio to start with is 3 Coke:1 Branca Menta. Its strong mint/menthol flavors can be challenging to work into a cocktail.
Some popular cocktails containing Branca Menta
- Gruff and Rumble — Rum, Orange liqueur, Branca Menta, Bitters, Lime juice
- No Mint Bittered Cynar Julep — Rum, Cynar, Branca Menta, Bitters, Demerara syrup, Lime
- Good Night, Irene — Branca Menta, Bourbon
- Black Rock Chiller — Suze, Branca Menta, Reposado Tequila
- Pleasure and Pain — Batavia Arrack, Branca Menta, Walnut Liqueur, Bénédictine