Looking for a refreshing cocktail this Sunday afternoon? Then look no further than an Aperol Spritz.
On a warm Summer’s day an Aperol Spritz is probably the perfect tipple and Mascalzone is probably one of the best Italian restaurants in Houston and London to sit back and enjoy a refreshing beverage!
How to Make Aperol Spritz
The Spritz is a wine based cocktail originating from the Veneto region of Italy and is usually served as an aperitif. Bright orange in colour and with a combination of sweet liqueur and white wine or fizzy Prosecco, the Aperol Spritz is refreshing with a bitter-sweet after taste.
Aperol itself is an infusion of herbs and roots. Its most distinctive flavours are oranges and rhubarb and containing only 11% alcohol Aperol is an incredibly light liquer.
To make the perfect Aperol Spritz we use:
- A bottle of chilled Prosecco
- A bottle of Aperol
- Soda, served from a syphon or chilled bottle
- Tall balloon or wine glasses
- Ice cubes
- Slices of orange
While some Aperol Spritz recipes contain a 3:2:1 serving, at Mascalzone we opt for a 50:50 mix of Aperol and Prosecco with a splash of soda, in keeping with the cocktail’s Italian heritage!
aperol spritz glasses
We serve the Aperol Spritz over ice in a lowball glass (or sometimes a martini glass or wine glass) and then garnish with a slice of orange and an olive on a stick, the same way they serve it in Venice!
Origins of the Spritz
The Spritz takes its roots in North Eastern Italy and is a descendant of the Austrian Spritzer, a blend of White Wine and Soda Water.
The earliest mention of the beverage appeared during the 1800s when, at this time, Venice was part of the Austrian Empire under the ruling Habsburg dynasty.
Soldiers, merchants, diplomats and administrators of the Habsburg Empire in Veneto are all believed to have frequented local taverns and to have become accustomed to the local wines.
It is also documented that they were less familiar with the wide variety of wines that are still found in the Veneto, in particular the much higher alcohol content.
It is said that the newcomers would ask the local Italian Taverners to spray a quantity of water into the wine to make it less heavy. The term for this is Spritzen in German.
Evolution of the Spritz
The first major evolution of the Spritz came a century later in the 1900s when carbonated water was made available through Soda Syphons, thus making it possible to make a sparkling Spritz with still wine.
This saw the Spritz introduced to Austrian noblewomen, who, adding a touch of glamour to the aperitif, could now be seen to be drinking a soft drink.
Since then the drink has evolved further with infinite liquor additions, notably Aperol.
Variations of the Aperol Spritz
Traditionally bartenders and taverners have been free to interpret the doses required to create the perfect Aperol Spritz recipe, so there is no single composition. Consequently the alcohol content is also known to vary.
Despite this Prosecco remains a common denominator between the existing variants along with sparkling water.
Here are a few other interesting variations of the Aperol Spritz recipe that we came across at Mascalzone whilst undertaking some highly enjoyable and necessary research:
- Aperol, Vodka and Cider: A zesty combination that gets set off by adding some agave syrup, lemon juice, three dashes of orange bitters and some orange zest.
- Sake and Yuzu: Mix 35ml of Aperol with 150ml of sparkling Sake and 20ml of Yuzu juice or fresh lemon juice.
- Sgroppino: This classic Venetian cocktail is used both as an aperitif and digestif. Mix 50ml of Aperol with two scoops of fruit sorbet (lemon, orange or grapefruit) and 100ml of Prosecco
- Aperol Smash: Mixed with two parts Aperol, one part whisky and one part lemon juice. The citrus really cuts through the strength of the alcohol to deliver a highly fragrant cocktail.
- Cloudy Prosecco: Three parts Malibran (a cloudy Prosecco), two parts Aperol and one part soda, conjuring up a crisp and refreshing spritz.
- Without Prosecco: Try out an Aperol Spritz as normal, but instead use traditional as opposed to sparkling white wine, then top with soda water and garnish with an olive and slice of lemon.
ENJOY DRINKS IN LONDON and HOUSTON
Our selection of Antipasti and homemade Focaccia are the perfect combination with a refreshing aperitif such as the Aperol Spritz.
All our restaurants open out on to busy thoroughfares, making Mascalzone a great place to an enjoy an aperitif and people watch, and the ideal meeting place for a date, a get together or to host an event.
Since opening a location in Texas, Mascalzone is fast becoming a trusted spot for some of the best Italian food Houston has to offer. All of our pasta is house made on the premises and we import all of our ingredients direct from Italy.
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Author: Toto Mascalzone
Toto Mascalzone is event and marketing manager at Mascalzone restaurant. He is an Italian wine writer and educator, blogger, and food and wine enthusiast currently living in London. He is author of the wine and lifestyle blog, and was a co-editor, together with Italian wine writer a blog devoted to news from the world of Italian wine.