Daily Archives: May 1, 2009

Get spritzed

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Even though it’s not looking like a great spring weather weekend, there’s no reason not to enjoy a tasty spring cocktail.

With less than half the alcohol, Aperol might seem like Campari’s teetotaling cousin, but it has a charm all its own. Aperol is in the bitters family, just like Fernet Branca, Cinzano or Dubonnet. It’s sweet with a bite, with notes of bitter orange and rhubarb. Aperol’s secret recipe of fruits, vegetables, herbs and roots dates back to 1919. The original recipe was developed by the Barbieri family in the Veneto region of Italy and it is now produced by the Campari company. You can enjoy it on the rocks, with sparkling water, as part of a wine spritzer or in one of the cocktails below.

Aperol Spritz
2 oz. Aperol
2 oz. Moscato d’Asti (sweet, low alcohol wine from northern Italy)
1 oz. orange juice
combine these ingredients with ice/shake/strain
pour into a rocks glass with ice and top with a splash of soda and garnish with an orange wheel

Spring Spritz
1.5 oz. bourbon
1 oz. Aperol
1 lime wedge
1 orange wedge
combine these ingredients with ice/shake/strain
pour into a rocks glass with ice and top with splash of 7-Up and garnish with an orange wheel

The first cocktail is close to a traditional spritz, but uses a dessert wine instead of a dry white or Prosecco. Moscato d’Asti is easy to find, inexpensive, effervescent and its sweetness plays nicely against the bitter orange character of the Aperol. The second cocktail isn’t technically a spritz since it contains no wine, but it’s still bright, refreshing and well-balanced because of the sweetness of the bourbon. Cheers, or as the Italians might say, cin cin!

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Filed under Cocktails, Spirits