The Love Story of an Apéritif

Drink, Drink Recipes, Melbourne, Sydney / 31 January 2017
get the latest straight to your inbox

The Love Story of an Apéritif

Drink, Drink Recipes, Melbourne, Sydney / 31 January 2017

The three apéritif recipes you didn’t know you needed

The apéritif is making a comeback just in time for the season of courtyard parties and summer picnics. So it’s time to dust off the good ol’ recipe book to see what’s mixing for apéritif refreshments.

Apéritif is a French word, deriving from the Latin word aperire, meaning “to open.” Usually weighing in somewhere between 16 and 25 percent alcohol, aperitifs are meant to slap awake our tastebuds. 

Preparing for great meals and heavy cocktails, we have compiled a list of aperitif recipes made to rock that appetite. Most of us have experienced the joy that is a chilled Aperol spritz these past summers, however, there’s so much more to the world of alcoholic aperitifs to explore.

Below are some recipes for easy-made aperitifs to change up the beat a little bit before serving dinner.  


Jacaranda & St Germain Fizz

  • 30ml gin
  • 20ml St Germain
  • 30ml lemon juice
  • 5ml sugar
  • 10ml egg white
  • 2 dashes of mandarin bitters
  • 3 dashes of absinthe
  • Top with soda
  • Fistful of jacaranda flowers

Dry shake all ingredients except soda, then shake with ice. Strain into a fizz glass over ice, top with soda.



Raspberry glass, field mushroom, cognac, sparkling

  • 15ml field mushroom brandy
  • 15ml raspberry brandy
  • 2 bar spoons of raspberry syrup
  • 90ml prosecco
  • 1 brown mushroom sugar cube
  • Raspberry glass to garnish


Burnt pecan, pisco, mandarin reduction, oloroso

  • 45ml burnt pecan shell pisco
  • 15ml oloroso
  • 30ml mandarin reduction
  • 10ml lemon
  • 20ml pecan orgeat from scratch
  • 5 dashes mandarin bitter

Mandarin leather to garnish.

Negroni Sbagliato
(as seen on featured image)

  • 30ml Campari
  • 30ml Cinzano Rosso
  • 30ml prosecco

Build over ice, garnish with an orange twist.

A few tasting notes on the ingredients and other must-have apéritifs

Campari: Arguably the most recognisable bitter in the world, the carmine-hued Campari is a staple of the aperitivo hour.

St Germain: Made from freshly picked elderflower blossoms, St Germain possesses a purity of flavour, with characters that suggest pear, peach and grapefruit.

Amaro di Angostura: Bottled at 35% ABV, Amaro di Angostura is a deep amber colour, offering aromas of cinnamon, dark chocolate and unmistakable Angostura aromatic bitters.

Red Økar: Here’s a locally produced bitter that heroes Australian ingredients, the chief one among them being riberries, which brings out a cranberry like tartness.

Vermouth: A traditional type of fortified wine flavored with botanicals, made by a variety of companies, among whom Martini & Rossi and Noilly Prat are some of the best known. Available in red (sweet or Italian) and white (dry or French) varieties. 

Lillet: Pronounced “lee-LAY,” this classic French wine-based aperitif is available in Blanc and Rouge varieties. Citrusy and spicy, with a delicious honeyed texture, Blanc is the more popular of the two. 

Aperol: Made by the same company as Campari, Aperol is a bright orange-hued, spirit-based drink flavored with the distinctive zing of rhubarb.

Other known players are sherry, prosecco, cava, Champagne, Pimms, Pernod and a variety of Pastis. Remember that apéritifs are meant to open up our palate, not to break our seal.

All cocktails put forward by Sam Egerton via the Australian Bartender.