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Your chocolate moment

Interview with Florian Iro, Managing Director at Mozart Distillerie GmbH

European Business: What was the inspiration behind combining chocolate and liqueur to create your distinctive line of Mozart Chocolate Liqueurs?

Florian Iro: It’s quite simple really: Chocolate has no demographic. Nine out of ten people adore chocolate, and the tenth person is lying! That’s just a little industry joke. But in all seriousness, our range of chocolate liqueurs appeals to chocolate-lovers all over the world. Chocolate is something personal, while drinking connects people socially. We combine these two worlds to bring people closer together. That’s the true inspiration behind our products.

European Business: Chocolate isn’t exactly a static product. Everyone has a personal preference for either dark or milk chocolate. How do you keep up with the trends and developments in consumer tastes?

Florian Iro: This is precisely what draws me to this line of work: innovation. Mozart Chocolate Liqueurs come in a variety of flavours, including classic chocolate, chocolate cream, white chocolate, dark chocolate and, my personal favourite, chocolate vodka. Beyond this line, our distillery is constantly experimenting with new flavours. In fact, the Mozart distillery has over 150 years of experience doing exactly that: working with essential raw ingredients – cocoa, sugar and vanilla – to create delectable products. Our flagship liqueurs are the Mozart Chocolate Cream and Dark Chocolate, although our newest flavours, Mozart White Chocolate Strawberry and Mozart Pumpkin Spice, have also been met with eager anticipation.

European Business: Pumpkin spice is certainly a trending seasonal flavour, particularly with consumers in North America. Are Mozart Chocolate Liqueurs also available outside of Europe?

Florian Iro: Mozart Chocolate Liqueurs are already available in 70 different countries. Out of the 500,000 l the Mozart Distillery produces annually, 85% is exported abroad. As a company, we would like to expand further into the US and UK markets, as well as establish a presence in China and India.

European Business: The Mozart moniker is globally renowned. Why was this name chosen for your distillery?

Florian Iro: Since Mozart was born in Salzburg, he has become a cultural ambassador for our city and for Austria as a whole. Originally, the Mozart Distillery focused on exporting the signature chocolate liqueurs, but now our aim is to anchor the brand firmly in its place of origin. This could prove to be somewhat of a challenge because the Austrian market does tend to be more traditional.

European Business: Is there a certain level of pressure to live up to the prestige associated with the Mozart name?

Florian Iro: Of course! Some pressure is welcome because it pushes us to reach the highest standards of quality for our liqueurs. This is an aspect Mozart Distillery prides itself on – absolutely no compromises on quality. It’s not enough that 98% of the bottles taste good. 100% of the bottles produced must exceed the expectations of our customers in terms of quality and originality.

European Business: On a more personal note, you mentioned earlier that your favourite was the Mozart Chocolate Vodka. Do you have a particular cocktail recipe you prefer as well?

Florian Iro: The Salzburg Lemonade is an excellent summertime cocktail – my go-to refreshment for the season. It’s a mixture of 40 ml Mozart Chocolate Vodka, 15 ml orange liqueur, 15 ml lemon juice and a splash of lemonade. On the Mozart Distillery website, there is a list of all the most popular cocktail recipes with options for every season.

European Business: Could Mozart spirits also be used to spice up dessert recipes?

Florian Iro: Our liqueurs are versatile. Recently, we teamed up with the founder of CupCakes Vienna, Renate Gruber, to create custom dessert recipes. There are a variety of unique recipes for every Mozart liqueur listed on our webpage. With such a broad selection of flavours, you can really get creative!

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