Have you ever heard about "Mezza Carolina"? This would be impossible if you often come to Arenzano . The famous typical cocktail of Arenzano born in 1967 is a great success, testified by the crowds of peoplecoming to the first editions of the “Mezza Carolina Day”, the event that celebrates the drink.
This event, organized by the Municipality in collaboration with the town dealers, brings, in the beautiful setting of the Villa Figoli park, food stands, street food with delicious specialties such as "mezza ice cream”, but also music and cabaret. And obviously "Mezza" for everybody, served in recycled and reusable plastic cups! But how was this cocktail, with an unusual name, born?
Behind the glass there is a story that not everyone knows.
At the end of the Sixties, about thirty American engineers came to Arenzano: during the day they work in the shipyards of Sestri Ponente, in the evening they “came home” in the prettiest Arenzano and stop at the Nardin bar for a drink. They usually ordered vodka drinks with orange Schweppes and this inspired the bar owner, Ilio Ricchetti, to create a cocktail along the lines of the one drunk by the engineers, just a little less stronger and more suitable for Italian palates.
Ilio experiments until the final recipe of what has now become the local cocktail: half a glass of vodka, half a bottle of orange Schweppes, a little bit of Campari bitter and half a slice of orange.
These "half" things make understand the first part of the cocktail's name. But Carolina? She is a tiny little girl who used to go to Ilio's bar and who gave the idea of something small, not too strong, that everyone likes.