The SPRITZ (…THE APEROL SPRITZ)

There`s no denying it, this light delicious blend of bubbles and bitters is more of a style of drinking, an approach to drinking than a strict cocktail recipe.

Delicious, refreshing, and fairly low in alcohol, a spritz is simply Aperol (or another bitter liqueur like Campari) with Prosecco and a splash of soda. It’ll take a lot of these to get you “spritz-faced,” and that’s a good thing when you’re drinking all day.

The rise of the Aperol spritz: A couple of years ago, it’s unlikely you’d ever heard of the Aperol spritz. This summer, you may barely have been able to go to a bar without seeing a glass of bright orange, bubbly liquid. It’s official now: the Aperol spritz is Greece`s unofficial official cocktail!

I love it because the taste is pretty much the equivalent of how I feel at the end of a summer day: bubbly and a little bittersweet, it`s low in alcohol, so I can drink it for longer without getting too wasted, it`s got a gorgeous color ideal for Instagram pics and of course, it`s crazy easy to make!

How to spritz

First, a spritz is always effervescent. Whether its bubble is acquired through soda water, prosecco, some other sparkling wine, or a flavored soda, the spritz would not be a spritz without bubbles.

Second, a spritz is low in alcohol, which, for our purposes, means that it should contain no more than one ounce of strong spirits (preferably less). This is a drink that is consumed when the day is waning, and the night is young.

Third, a spritz is a pre-dinner drink meant to be consumed in that liminal hour between work and play.

The roots

In the 1950s, Aperol Spritz was born in Padua.

Here`s the timeline:

First, the Aperol: It was created by the Barbieri brothers in Padua as a ‘tonic for active men’ and was then bought by the Campari company. Indeed, the two drinks are quite similar, though Aperol is less bitter, so easier to drink, with an alcohol content of 11% — around half that of the Campari.

Second, the spritz: If you like a good spritz, you can thank the Habsburgs. The cocktail was the incidental creation of the Austro-Hungarian occupation of Venice in the early 1800s. The word “spritz” on its own is a generic term linked to the 19th century Austro-Hungarian practice of adding a splash (German: spritz) of water to northern Italian wines. Rumor has it, the strong wines made in their Italian territories were too bold for fussy German palates, so a dash of water was used to mellow out the wine.

In the 20th century, “spritz” took on its current definition: A wine-based cocktail made with bitter liquor and a splash of soda. Brands like Aperol or Campari provided the bitter component and color, each imparting unique flavors and hues. The precise recipe, ingredient proportions, glass shape, and garnishes change from bar to bar and city to city, but one thing remains constant nationwide: When ordering a Spritz, the drinker must always specify his preferred liquor.

Third, the Aperol spritz: The official Aperol Spritz`s place of birth is Padova, where the bartenders were following the Campari Group’s doctrine to the letter. According to the Campari Group, the “official Aperol Spritz” is made of 3 parts Cinzano Prosecco (Campari also owns the Cinzano brand…), 2 parts Aperol and 1part soda, proportions which spawned the “3-2-1” publicity campaign.

 spritz-2

The makin’s
3 parts Prosecco
2 parts Aperol
1 splash soda
A slice of orange for garnish

 

The drill
Pour over ice and top with a slice of orange and enjoy!

For the best results, keep these key factors in mind:

Ice: Use large cubes, never crushed ice, essential for the drink’ s slow dilution

Prosecco: Use a chilled, dry Prosecco to impart acidity and effervescence

The Glass: Always serve in standard wine glasses and always with a black straw

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