Tuesday, December 29, 2009

More Dispatches from Afar: Buenos Aires, Argentina

Another holiday treat! This one coming from Your Fernetiquette's Senior Dirty Hippie Correspondent. We catch up with Her Granolatude as she travels to the one place on Earth that could possibly claim to love Fernet more than San Francisco does. That's right, she's in the Lion's den: Argentina.

Washington Monument II, The Wrath of George

 Here, she shares her story of her night out on the town with her gentleman friend. In an effort to protect his good name, we'll call him "Dan".

Greetings! Having a fantastic time thusfar in Buenos Aires ... Already seeing a lot of amazing architecture and interesting things and, of course, Fernet and Fernet ads.

I'll write up something more coherent later but I'll share this with you:

In the bar last night Dan tried to order a Fernet. I'm not sure what the precise language barrier seemed to be on this matter but he ended up with a Fernet Cola, because she explained, she thought he couldn`t possibly have wanted just a shot of Fernet as it is, in fact, not good.
[Editor's note: BLASPHEMY!]

(please note: this is a somewhat loosely translated version of what she said. but you get the point.)
I get the point indeed: Argentinians are a bunch of ninnies. Albeit ninnies who write catchy tunes about their ninny drinks. Por ejemplo:

Try to get THAT baby out of your head for the next four hours. You're welcome.

Oh! I almost forgot! Our correspondent added one delicious post-script to her note: 

And I'm taking pics of ads all over the place.

 Yay more free content yay!


Filed under: Drink it like a man you pansies, Fernets and their migratory patterns, Fernet on the Tubes, Senior BLANK Correspondent, Fernet and Cola, It's not really that bad ya know, The Argentine Menace

Monday, December 28, 2009

Places You Can Get Fernet: Los Angeles, CA

Greetings, Fernetizens! I write from vacation in the snowy midwest to pass along this tidbit from our Senior Los Angeles correspondent.

Well hello there.
Taken at the Down and Out, at 5th and Spring in Downtown Los Angeles. Our correspondent reports:

"I believe they gave me the shot for free. :-)"

Happy Holidays indeed!

Filed under: Places you can get Fernet, Senior BLANK Correspondent, Fernets and their migratory patterns, Los Angeles, LA is sorta OK sometimes, How much are you paying for your Fernet.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Contemplating the Oakland Athletics of San Jose in the Long Dark Tea Time of the Offseason

Despite promising to from the very beginning, I’ve yet to write about anything but our Bitter of Choice. The FerneTyranny ends now(!) with a piece about… the Oakland A’s!?

Make no mistake my friends, Your Fernetiquette is no Athletics fan. Nay, the blood in my veins is black as pitch and orange as uh… an orange. I’ve considered legally changing my name to Mrs. Tim Lincecum IV, Esq. I recently saw Pablo Sandoval order a sandwich at a local Subway and freaked out like a little girl and mass texted everyone I knew. Point is I’m a San Franciscan and a Giants fan. I only concern myself with the A’s when I’m talking friendly smack with my A’s fan friends or they’re crushing us in a championship series. Thankfully for me the former happens far more often than the latter. The rest of the time I could not care less about them. I acknowledge that they are a solid franchise with a great history, but they’re also one which is pretty easy for me to ignore (I’m not the only one, as evidenced by their “attendance”. ZING~!)

Fan Appreciation Day at the Coliseum!

To this day it honestly perplexes me as to why Oakland fans in general have such fervent animosity towards the Giants. The clearest example of this was that almost every A’s fan I knew rooted for Anaheim against San Francisco in the 2002 World Series, even though
A) Anaheim and Oakland are in the same division and routinely beat each others’ brains out,
B) they were rooting for effing SoCal over their Northern California brethren, and
C) if another converse World Series happened (A’s-Dodgers), every Giants fan alive would slather themselves in green and yellow while making daily human sacrifices at the altar of Vida Blue to prevent another blasphemous Dodger world title.
Nevertheless, when the Giants ended up losing, I had to put up with more razzing from A’s fans than I did from Dodgers or Angels fans. Which: annoying! (True fact: When I asked my A’s-fan brother-in-law why this was the case, he responded with a straight face that the A’s and Angels “aren’t really division rivals.” Hand to Mays, he said it.)

Blessed be His name
Anyway, in general I don’t get it. HOWEVA, when it comes to the whole “Giants-blocking-the-A’s-theoretical-move-to-San Jose” thing, the vitriol begins to make sense. Look, far be it from me to deny that the Giants have legal territorial rights over San Jose under their agreement with Major League Baseball. The Giants paid for them and the A’s didn’t, so neener neener. That said, rather than getting the City Attorney of San Francisco to throw his weight behind preventing the move wholesale, why don’t we just use this to work something out? After all, no one wants to be forced to live in Oakland so forcing them to stay is unnecessarily cruel. We just have to use a little leverage, baby. Leverage. Given that the Giants literally bid against themselves to re-sign Barry Bonds every 5 years I know this is sort of a foreign concept to Sabean, so I’ll lay it out slowly.

Below the jump, allow me to present you with my ransom note list of demands in exchange for relinquishing the San Jose territory and allowing the A’s to move to Silicon Valley. If Beane and the boys can agree to this list, then the Siege of San Jose is over and the entire city of Oakland is free to re-locate south. So without further ado:

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Something about these ads speaks to me

...even though I can't exactly make out what they're saying.

One for Branca...

One for Cinzano...

I dunno. Can't quite put my finger on it, but whatever it is I can relate.

Filed under: Fernet adverts, Fernet on the Tubes, Fernet Non-Branca, le sigh

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Yes please, ma'am. I'll take two.

A couple of adverts from the "Shockingly Unique" campaign to share today. First this one:

And then this one, which I actually prefer even though the scan is bad:

I can't say exactly what's so "Shockingly Unique" about the young lady in ad #2, but I'm not complaining. The ads are stylish, sexy and visually interesting. Consider my appetite whetted.

The text in both is as follows:

Fernet-Branca is like nothing you've ever tasted. [Not so sure I agree with you 100% on your policework there, Fernet Ad guy - Ed] It's strong, aggressive and not for the easily intimidated; but the closely guarded secret recipe rewards the adventurous with a bold taste, and leaves you feeling revitalized and alive. Try a shot of Fernet-Branca and you'll experience over 40 herbs picked in four continents that give it a natural and unique flavor.

I find it interesting that both ads recommend trying "a shot" of Fernet, yet both feature a glass of Fernet and cola next to the bottle (though Sailor Moon Lady above admirably isn't bothering with any of that fey mixer stuff). In my anecdotal experience, most San Franciscans take their medicine straight up. Fernet and cola (or "Fernet con coca" more accurately) is more of an Argentinian thing.

Also peep the return of the alligator in ad #1. As we all have learned, the Branca family had used gators for years in their advertisements because they were famous for their digestive abilities.

So everything old is new again. Just, you know... sluttier.

Filed under: fernet adverts, Shockingly Unique, Fernet True Facts, Fernet and Cola, Drink it like a man you pansies

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Fernetiquette Gets Fan Mails: Fernet Makes the Yuletide Gay

Opened the old mailbox this morning, and what to my wondering eyes should appear? A letter! From a far away foreign place where the world is dark and cold and there is nothing to live for (aka "Wisconsin"). A letter about Fernet! Huzzah!
Dear Fernetiquette,
[Note- He didn't actually say "Dear Fernetiquette", but I'm pretending it did because these things seem better when they're formalized- Ed.]

You have inspired me. If I can't think of a gift for someone, I'm at least giving them Fernet. I ordered six bottles; I hope that's enough.
 Six bottles is only enough if you're stocking up for the evening 'round these parts. I can't speak for the 'Sconnies.

But wait! There's more!

I'm giving at least two of them to my hipster nephews in Brooklyn. I'll reference your blog on the card!
OH HELL YEAH WE'RE FAMOUS NOW! Seriously, my sincere thanks for the hat tip. I'm beyond gratified that this blog could facilitate the distribution of Italian amaro to as many as six (6) more people throughout the country! This, frankly, is more than I figured I'd ever accomplish with this thing. I'm kind of gobsmacked.

So to celebrate this momentous occasion and the birth of this here website (and um... Jesus, I guess) here are some pictures of Your Fernetiquette's Christmas tree, courtesy of Lady Fernetiquette.

Yep, she made it herself. I know, I know. I'm a lucky fella.

 May your trees be as Fernet-adorned as those two lucky scenester kids in the BK.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Things I've Been Told Fernet Tastes Like: Not for dumping in sweaters

Fernet =

Yeah, I can sort of see that one, actually.

I was told this on December 14, 2009 at Pop's Bar by an acquaintance trying it for the first time.

Monday, December 14, 2009

How Much Are You Paying For Your Fernet?: The Mint Karaoke Lounge

$6.50 per shot of Fernet-Branca

(Not a typo)

Look, I love The Mint about as much as anyone. Probably more. My considerable Karaoke skillz have engendered enough fawning worship from the clientele that the door people and KJs know me, so I don't need to be told the deal. I understand that if you are going to the Mint, you are going for silly, campy extravagance and the best Karaoke song book in the Western Hemisphere. You are not typically going for a cheap and quiet place to wage solemn, solitary war on your liver. I get it. Really, I do.

That said: SIX DOLLARS AND FIFTY FUCKING CENTS!? Unconscionable. C'mon guys. Tell me this was a mistake.

Saturday, December 12, 2009

"...Fernet means never having to say you're sorry."

Oh, SF Appeal. Just when I think I'm out, you pull me back in.
Fernet love stories are like the Aesop's Fables of San Francisco. For example: One time a couple was bickering in a bar. What they were arguing about is irrelevant, suffice it to say it looked like the fight would never end. Finally, one of them looked the other straight in the eye and said, "Don't bite the hand that feeds you Fernet," and their jaws dropped like they had just heard that the SF Weekly had made up with The Guardian. It was clear that the fight was over, and they would be together for a long time, because every San Franciscan knows that Fernet means never having to say you're sorry.
I'll forgive the eye-roll-inducing reference to a local print "journalism" rivalry that I'm sure 99.6% of San Franciscans don't know or care about, because that last line is pure literary genius. That's the sort of linguistic pyrotechnics that I'd expect from Cormac McCarthy or Chabon or the dude who writes Clatter, but never from the online styrofoam that is SF Appeal. Nay, that last phrase is gorgeous. A work of art. I'm thinking of getting it tattooed on my throat, y/n?

The article also uses my favorite Fernet advert as the article's picture.

Lookit that guy! He's so happy! It's like all he's ever wanted out of life is to squeeze the shit out of that Fernet bottle and dress like an old drag queen. And now his life's goals are fulfilled. It warms the cockles.

The last two paragraphs of the piece, on the other hand, I could do without:
San Franciscans like to travel, and will often try to order Fernet at bars in places like Eugene Oregon. San Franciscans aren't idiots, they know as well as anyone that people in Oregon only drink microbrews, but they use this as a way to test the bartender. 

If the bartender stares blankly and offers them Jager he/she has failed, but if the bartender looks at the San Franciscan with a wry smile and says, "You must be from San Francisco," then that bartender has totally passed, and is going to get a personal invitation to stay with this San Franciscan the next time he/she travels south.
I don't like this if only because it presages a feature of this here website, which just makes me look like I stole the whole idea, which is both totally preposterous and very probably true. Either way: NOT A FAN.

Monday, December 7, 2009

Fernetiquette True FAQs

Dear Fernetiquette, 

I've got lots of questions.
Awesome. But that's... not really a question.

I know. I'm just saying I have them and that they may or may not be asked frequently.
Oh. I suppose you'd like me to answer them in a timely fashion, then?


I'll probably get on with it now-ish.
Solid. Fire when ready.

(cont'd after the jump)

December 7th, 2005: A Day that Coincidentally will Also Sort Of Live in Moderate Infamy

Why would that December day be so important as to warrant mention somewhere on the internet? Because that was the day this vital masterpiece of investigative journalism was published:

The legendary liquid in that emerald bottle is more than merely San Francisco's preferred method of self-medication; it's an intoxicating fairy tale. And even though Dammann's story is one that demonstrates the devotion of Fernet's fans, in a city that drinks more of the liqueur than any other locale in the United States and more per capita than any place on Earth, there are plenty of asses on barstools with a story to tell about Fernet-Branca. And in telling the tales, they continue the life of the drink itself, which was born of myth, and somehow along the way has become perfectly suited to San Francisco's palate.

This is how Fernet-Branca came to thin the lifeblood of our city.

And now, four years later, there's a half-assed blog dedicated to lazily chronicling said thinning of aforementioned lifeblood. As you can see, it's an important signpost in human history. So please gentle reader, take the time today to review the article in its entirety. Allow yourself to reflect on what Pearl Harbor Day Infamous SF Weekly Fernet Article Publishing Day means to you personally and the future of America. Also, there will be a pop quiz.

More on the Infamous SF Weekly Fernet Article as it develops...

Friday, December 4, 2009

Places I've had Fernet: Ann Arbor, Michigan

FOUND AT: Zingerman's Roadhouse in Ann Arbor, Michigan on the evening of September 26, 2008.

THE STORY: While waiting for a table, I purchased a shot at the bar for myself and one for my old man. Someone next to me heard the order and asked if I was from San Francisco. I said yes. The bartender said he couldn't recall anyone ever ordering the stuff before.

I finished my shot. Dad did not. I forgave him. Michigan beat Wisconsin the next day 27-25. We yelled ourselves hoarse and sang The Victors arm-in-arm.