In recent years, the Aperitif Spritz has become one of the most popular summer cocktails around the world. In fact, according to Drinks International, it's the ninth best-selling cocktail globally — pretty impressive for a drink that was invented over 100 years ago!
Interestingly, the original Italian Aperitif spirit took over seven years to perfect. When the Barbieri brothers inherited their father's liquor company in 1912, they wanted to come up with something new and unexpected. They took their time, making sure the flavour was just right, eventually launching their unique spirit in 1919.
When it comes to making a non-alcoholic Aperitif Spritz, I like to take a leaf out of the Barbieri brothers’ book — I take my time to prepare the perfect Aperitif Spritz. In this guide, I’ll share everything I’ve learned so you’ll know how to make the perfect Aperitif Spritz too.
Start with the Aperitif alternative
First things first, you can’t make a perfect Aperitif Spritz without a premium non-alcoholic Aperitif spirit. While there are several Aperitif spirits available, there are subtle differences and it's important to find the right one for your palate.
For me, it has to be the Sans Bar Spritzing in Venice which was designed with making the perfect Aperitif Spritz in mind. It has a complex flavour profile with the familiar flavours of bitter orange, rhubarb and herbs. It’s also low in sugar and calories, so there is no need to worry about those Aperitif Spritz calories.
Add some sparkle
Next up — non-alcoholic sparkling wine. While the original Aperitif Spritz recipe calls for Prosecco, you can use any premium non-alcoholic sparkling wine. If you’re new to non-alcoholic sparkling wine, this guide to champagne alternatives can help you find the best non-alcohol sparkling for Aperitif Spritz making.
A splash of soda
Although the third ingredient in the perfect Aperitif Spritz recipe isn’t as important as the first two, believe me when I say it does make a difference.
When I’m at home, I like to carbonate my own chilled water using my Qarbo Sparkling Water Maker. However, if I’m making a round of Aperitif Spritz mocktails at a friend’s place or in my shop, I opt for StrangeLove Soda Water.
Don't forget the garnish
Traditionally, the Italian Aperitif Spritz is garnished with a slice of orange and a green olive. The green olive contrasts with the vivid orange, but it also enhances the taste because the salt from the olive complements both the sweetness and bitterness of the Aperitif spirit.
The glass is more than a vessel
Although there are no hard and fast rules to follow, for me, it has to be a bowl-shaped wine glass with a stem that's at least 380-420ml in size. Not only is it visually appealing, but it’s also large enough to accommodate the ice and the long stem means my Aperitif Spritz stays cold for longer, making it a win-win-win!
Make it an occasion — Italian style
As an Aperitif is a pre-dinner drink that helps to whet the appetite, the Aperitif Spritz is best served with appetisers. When I’m entertaining, I like to serve a tray of beautifully prepared Aperitif Spritz mocktails alongside an extravagant antipasti platter filled with Italian-inspired nibbles.
The perfect Aperitif Spritz recipe
Essentially, the perfect Aperitif Spritz recipe is a simple three, two, one formula. That’s three parts non-alcoholic sparkling wine, two parts Aperitif spirit and one part soda water.
- 90ml Thompson & Scott Noughty Sparkling Chardonnay
- 60ml Sans Bar Spritzing in Venice
- 30ml StrangeLove Soda Water
- A green olive
- A slice of orange
First, add 60ml of Sans Bar Spritzing in Venice into a large wine glass. Next, carefully add 90ml of Thompson & Scott Noughty Sparkling Chardonnay and a splash of soda. Finally, fill the glass with ice and garnish with a green olive and slice of orange.
- Use plenty of ice and add it last. If you add the ice first, it will begin to melt and dilute the other ingredients.
- Get the measurements right — taking a few extra seconds to correctly measure the Aperitif Spritz ingredients makes a big difference.
Keep perfecting your Aperitif Spritz
There are so many different ways you can tweak your Aperitif Spritz recipe, so I like to think of it as an adventure. Try different types of non-alcoholic sparkling wine, try different Aperitif spirits or try different garnishes (but trust me on the olive). One day you’ll pick up your freshly made non-alcoholic Aperitif Spritz, take a sip and know that you’ve found perfection.
To help you on your journey of discovery, you might like to sign up to my loyalty club so I can share the latest products and special offers with you. You can also explore Aperitif alternatives on my website.
I hope that this guide has been helpful to you. Good luck with your Aperitif Spritz adventures, or as they say in Italy, buona fortuna!