Anís del Mono Factory – Badalona, Spain - Gastro Obscura
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Gastro Obscura

Anís del Mono Factory

Badalona, Spain

A bronze sculpture of a monkey sits outside this factory, which has made an anise-flavored liqueur for over 150 years. 

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Described by some as a modernist jewel, the Anís del Mono factory has been located on the Badalona seafront since 1870, when brothers Josep and Vicenç Bosch began distilling there. 

Anís del Mono, or “the monkey’s anisette,” is a licorice-flavored liqueur consumed across the Mediterranean. The factory building houses the original machinery used more than a century ago. Today, the anisette liquor is still produced according to the traditional processes.

From the promenade at Badalona beach, you can take in the distinctive silhouette of the factory. Take note of the logo painted on the sides—an ape-like creature holding a scroll that reads “Es el mejor. La ciencia lo dijo y yo no miento”  (“It’s the best. Science said so and I don’t lie”). Why “ape-like”? The creature on the label bears the face of none other than Charles Darwin. The factory owners apparently wanted to parody Darwin’s ideas, which were hotly debated at that time. 

In 2012, a bronze sculpture of the iconic Anís del Mono creature was unveiled on Badalona’s seafront. The commemorative statue weighs more than 400 pounds, and was made by artist Susana Ruiz. The ape-man is pictured in deep concentration, holding a bottle of the aniseed liqueur.

Know Before You Go

Tours of the factory are available on the third Sunday of every month (except July and August). If you want to take the factory tour, be sure to check availability in advance with the Museu de Badalona.

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