You may be asking yourself, “what is this Aperol Spritz I keep hearing about, and what is a spritz, anyway?” Well, the idea of a “spritzer” has been around since the 1800s when Austrian soldiers controlled parts of Northern Italy. They found the Italian wines to be too strong for their liking and began asking for a “spritz” or splash of water to be added to their glasses. Over time, the water turned to sparkling water or soda, then liqueurs were added to the mix.
100 years later, the Barbieri Brothers from Padua, Italy created an aperitif from orange zest, vanilla, rhubarb, chincona, and other secret herbs and roots, which became what we know as Aperol today. Aperol is a tangerine-colored, semi-sweet, slightly bitter orange-flavored aperitif that has become increasingly popular over time. It gained momentum in the 1920s and 1930s and then became more widely celebrated in the 1950s as an alternative to the white wine “spritzer.” It was advertised as the perfect beverage for “active individuals.” What started as a pre-dinner drink, has grown to almost cult-like status in the 2000s.
The recipe is simple if you remember 3-2-1
In a wine or rocks glass, pour 3 parts Prosecco, (Italian sparkling wine,) 2 parts Aperol and 1 splash of soda water. Then garnish with an orange slice, and pop in a straw. It helps to use large ice cubes in order to slow dilution of the drink. Another helpful hint is to pour your Prosecco first to prevent the Aperol from sinking to the bottom of the glass. Now, you are officially ready for a history test, trivia night, a dinner party, and for Summer!