Aperol, the lighter, fruitier, less bitter cousin of the more well-known Campari. Have you heard of the Aperol Spritz? If so, that’s living proof that the company’s humongous marketing efforts are paying off. Aperol has invested heavily in advertising over the past half century, with their first commercial launched in the 50s! In recent decades, they’ve made an aggressive push to further publicize the brand and the now-famed Aperol Spritz, marketed to the younger generation as a fun refreshing cooler perfect for laid-back social gatherings with friends.
Marketing aside, the first time I ever had an Aperol drink, I fell in love with the taste and knew I needed it in my collection (and this was quite early in my homebar days when I was just venturing into liqueurs to expand beyond the basics). Aperol is a low-proof (11%ABV) Italian aperitivo (see my post on Bruto Americano for more on this) made with bitter and sweet oranges, rhubarb, gentian, cinchona, and other secret herbs/botanicals based on its original 1919 recipe. If you’re a big gin fan like I am, this will be a perfect addition to your collection, as Aperol pairs amazingly with gin (but hey, what doesn’t?), harmoniously complementing the natural botanical flavors in gin. Despite all the comparisons, I find it quite different from Campari, with a much stronger citrus flavor and is an absolutely delicious addition to shaken citrusy or fruity drinks. The gorgeous orange color doesn’t hurt either!
Aperol Spritz (3-2-1)
- 3oz prosecco (or any sparkling white wine)
- 2oz Aperol
- 1oz sparkling water
Fill a wine glass with ice, add the prosecco, followed by the Aperol, and top with sparkling water. Garnish with a floating orange slice.
Find more Aperol recipes here.