In 1845 Bernardino Branca created Fernet-Branca, soon to become the world-famous bitter. The rich sensations are thanks to the dozens of herbs and spices picked in 4 continents. The secret of a recipe Branca wisely cherished for over five generations. The fragrance of oak barrels, perfectly balanced blend of flavors matured for twelve months. The superbly bitter taste of Fernet-Branca begins here. Take your time, relish its qualities. Although originally Fernet was mainly served with water or soda, now (since late eighties) the most common preparation is with Coca-Cola: A tall glass with several ice cubes is filled about 1/10 full with Fernet and then Coke is slowly added. Fernet has been popular for the past couple of decades in the Czech Republic, where it is served as a shot, or over ice with tonic water, a mixture affectionately called "Bavorske Pivo" (Bavarian Beer) or "Bavorek." The drink has been popular in San Francisco since before Prohibition; its recent surge in popularity is the subject of a 2005 SF Weekly article, and as of 2008, San Francisco accounted for 25% of US consumption. Local bars often serve Fernet as a shot followed by a ginger ale chaser.