Fernet for the Lionhearted

Fernet Francisco is more than just a spirit. It’s the soul of those who indulge in life’s most peculiar ingredients. It’s the essence of those who grab bottles — and days — by the neck in a relentless pursuit to squeeze out every drop. And it’s a tenor held by the fine few who prefer dancing to walking, singing to talking, and loving to living.

Signature Signature

They say that it’s a bad thing to bottle up your emotions. We disagree.

Max Rudsten and Ben Flajnik, two local guys with a passion for the peculiar, formed their friendship over a shot of fernet. Prior to this fateful toast, they each had explored their infatuation with complex elixirs. Max had spent tireless days in his backyard experimenting with his own concoctions, constantly macerating, infusing, and barrel-aging different local plants and herbs, exhaustively cataloging the results in hopes of creating the first local, San Francisco fernet. Meanwhile, on an amaro quest of his own, Ben traveled to the most remote corners of the globe, immersing himself in the methods and techniques practiced by some of most renowned international distilleries.

Their connection sparked the emergence of Fernet Francisco - The first locally crafted, Bay Area fernet.

In each batch of Fernet Francisco, we distill 12 hand-picked herbs with a holy wisp of fresh fog. The purest. The surest. The spirit of San Francisco.

The Process


12 hand-picked, local herbs and botanicals, carefully selected for their bold aromas and intense flavors.


We vapor infuse a core distillate using a concoction of secret botanicals then blend with a medley of select herbal infusions using local grape-based brandy and organic natural grain spirit.


A refined and elegant, yet tremendously punchy elixir. Fernet Francisco, the Spirit of San Francisco

Ben Flajnik


Farid Dormishian

Distillation Master

Max Rudsten


The Drinks