Wednesday’s ad is for one of the most well-known Italian beers, Birra Moretti. It’s the iconic Moretti man used on the beer label since just after World War II, which has a fascinating story in its own right, which is reprinted below from Moretti’s website.
The story behind the label
The quality of Birra Moretti beer is guaranteed by the Man on the Label, the moustached drinker who is the symbol of the Birra Moretti brand. This moustached gentleman has an unusual history… In 1942, Birra Moretti had already been a popular drink all over Friuli for over 80 years. One day, Commander Lao Menazzi Moretti saw a pleasant-looking old man with a moustache sitting at a little table in the Boschetti di Tricesimo inn (Udine).
He was just the kind of character Moretti had been looking for to represent the qualities and character of his beer: wholesome, traditional and authentic. Commander Moretti didn’t let him get away. He went up to him and asked the man if he could photograph him and also asked him what he would like in return. “Cal mi dedi di bevi, mi baste” — answered the man in Friuli dialect, which means “Get me a drink, that’ll do.”
The photographs were taken and were used after the turbulent times caused by the war were over, when they were handed over to Professor Segala, a famous poster artist of the time. Segala, following Commander Moretti’s descriptions of the original colours (the photographs were, of course, in black and white), created an advertising billboard which was used for years, wherever Birra Moretti was sold. This billboard gave rise to the now-famous Birra Moretti label.