Do you Spritz? Try it, you’ll like it!

One of the most delightful parts of an afternoon in Italy is the ritual of the Spritz: Prosecco with some sort of not too strong bitter aperitivo added and perhaps a splash of soda, all served ice cold with chips, olives and, believe it or don’t, corn nuts. We’ve come up with a variation that has become a sensation amongst WINE EXPO-isti:

 

One and a half ounces of Cocchi Americano or Aperol in a white wine glass, fill with Prosecco, top with a splash of sparkling water (ice optional). Über-refreshing and so easy to make!

 

Cocchi Americano Aperitivo, Cocconato, Piemonte $21.99

Cocchi is perfect before dinner or in a long drink by the pool and will even cure Malaria (coming back, it’s a retro thang). It is sort of a Piemonte meets Lillet made by aromaticizing Moscato (fermented DRY) with Citrus, Spices and Quinine.

 

Aperol Aperitivo, Padova, Veneto  $27.99

Aperol is a wondrous concoction of over thirty fruits (with blood oranges and rhubarb in the lead), herbs and spices with a bright reddish orange color, a sweet / bitter orange and herbal flavor and just 11% alcohol. Unchanged since 1919 when the Barbieri Family of Padua created the original secret recipe, Aperol is perhaps the most popular social drink in Italy. Try it on the rocks (or with a splash of soda or tonic), spike your Sangria with it or make a classic aperitivo by combining it with a nice Prosecco (and perhaps a little lemon ice), you will not be sorry. It is also very versatile in the kitchen: try it in marinades, salad dressings and maybe even the frosting for a carrot cake…