Amaro Montenegro is an Italian bitter liqueur, flavored with floral and citrus notes. Here’s more about it and how to use it in cocktails.
Wondering what Amaro Montenegro is, and whether it’s worth a place in your liquor cabinet? This Italian amaro is a bitter liqueur with a unique, lightly floral flavor and a bitter finish. Like with most amari, it’s great on the rocks or as an easy cocktail with club soda! Here’s what you need to know about this tasty liqueur, including the best Amaro Montenegro cocktails.
What is Amaro Montenegro?
Amaro Montengero is an Italian amaro or bitter liqueur made in Bologna, Italy. It was invented in 1895 by Stanislao Cobianchi, named after Princess Elena of Montenegro who married the future king of Italy. It’s made with the original 1895 recipe of 40 different herbs, fruits and botanicals. It has a caramel color and a bittersweet, floral flavor.
What does Amaro Montenegro taste like?
Amaro Montenegro tastes more floral than most amari: it’s light and bittersweet with notes of orange a distinct rose petal finish. In fact, it’s the rose aroma that makes it second tier in our personal amari rankings. It’s a bit too much like Grandma’s soap for us, though if you love rose flavor you’ll adore this one. It’s at its best served on the rocks as an aperitif, with soda water, or standing in for Campari in a Negroni.
How much alcohol is in Amaro Montenegro? It is 23% ABV (alcohol by volume), so it has a mid-range alcohol content for an amaro. In comparison, Aperol is the lowest alcohol at 11% ABV, Campari is 24% ABV, and Fernet-Branca is the highest at 40 to 45% ABV (the same level as whiskey, rum, vodka and gin).
Are there any Amaro Montenegro? This amaro has a very unique flavor, and the rose petal essence is hard to replicate. Substitute another dark or caramel amaro like Amaro Meletti, Amaro Averna, Amaro Nonino, or Cynar.
Why we like it
To be honest, Amaro Montenegro isn’t our favorite amaro. Of course, don’t let that stop you from grabbing a bottle to test it out, especially if you enjoy floral flavors and rose in particular. it makes a great Negroni (aka MontenegroniAmaro Montenegro
If rose petals scare you away, there are plenty of other great amari. What to buy instead of Amaro Montengero? Try Amaro Meletti, Amaro Averna, Amaro Nonino, or Cynar.
How much does it cost?
Compared to other liquors, Amaro Montenegro is mid-priced. A 750 ml bottle costs about $35.
Most popular Amaro Montenegro cocktails
This amaro works straight or on the rocks, or you can mix it up into drinks. Don’t want to follow a recipe? Mix it with soda water to create a make-shift spritzer! Or, check out these Amaro Montenegro cocktails:
This intriguing spin on the Negroni features Amaro Montenegro, with hints of rose and an herbal bitter finish. It makes a much more intriguing Negroni, in our opinion! It's a riff on the classic Negroni, a classic cocktail invented in the 1920’s in Italy. (Go to the recipe below!)
Ingredients: Amaro Montenegro, gin, and sweet vermouth
The Montenegro Spritz is cousin of the classic cocktail, the Spritz Veneziano or Aperol Spritz. It's one of the best ways to drink this Italian bitter liqueur and comes out bubbly, bittersweet, and refreshing. The Montenegro Spritz uses Amaro Montenegro in place of the Aperol!
Ingredients: Amaro Montenegro, Prosecco, soda water
Love a good Manhattan? Here’s a sophisticated spin using Amaro Montenegro. It makes an intriguing spin on the classic, with notes of bitter orange and rose on the finish. (Note: Substitute for Cynar in the linked recipe.)
Ingredients: Amaro Montenegro, sweet vermouth, lemon juice, orange bitters
Guide to Amaro Montenegro: The Montenegroni & More!
- Prep Time: 5 minutes
- Cook Time: 0 minutes
- Total Time: 5 minutes
- Yield: 1 drink 1x
The Montenegroni is an intriguing spin on the classic featuring this Italian liqueur! It gives it a bitter, citrusy, and floral flavor.
- 1 ounce* gin
- 1 ounce sweet or semi-sweet red vermouth
- 1 ounce Amaro Montenegro
- Ice, for serving (try clear ice!)
- For the garnish: Lemon peel
- Combine the gin, sweet vermouth, and Amaro Montenegro in a cocktail mixing glass (or any other type of glass). Fill the mixing glass with 1 handful ice and stir continuously for 30 seconds.
- Add ice to a lowball glass, and strain the drink into the glass.
- Use a knife to remove a 1″ wide strip of the lemon peel. Squeeze the lemon peel into the drink to release the oils. Gently run the peel around the edge of the glass, then place it in the glass and serve.
*To convert to tablespoons, 1 ounce = 2 tablespoons
- Category: Drink
- Method: Stirred
- Cuisine: Cocktails
- Diet: Vegan
Keywords: Amaro Montenegro
More cocktail guides
Need more liquor guides? We’ve got them! Here’s all you need to know about home bartending:
- Aperol Guide and Campari Guide All you need to know about these Italian liqueurs.
- Aquavit All you need to know about this Scandinavian spirit
- Baileys Guide All the ins and outs of Irish Cream.
- Chartreuse Guide This pale green liqueur is worth adding to your collection…here’s why.
- Cointreau Guide, Blue Curacao Guide, or Orange Liqueur Guide Citrus liqueurs…broken down.
- Galliano Guide Is this bright yellow liqueur worth buying?
- Grenadine Guide It’s mistaken as cherry, but this bright syrup has a secret.
- Fernet Branca Guide Here’s why people love this Italian bitter.
- Kahlua Guide Learn about this popular Mexican coffee liqueur
- Peppermint Schnapps Try this tasty minty liqueur
- Pernod More about this anise-flavored liqueur
Let us know if you have any questions!
Amaro Montenegro makes my favorite Manhattans. I use Montenegro and Michter’s Rye.
Amaro Montenegro also adds great flavor to sautéed mushrooms.