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© Paden Reich
Tom and I were vacationing in Italy the first time I tried an Aperol Spritz. Whether we were in Rome, Venice, or my favorite city, San Gimignano, I saw people in restaurants and cafes sipping this vibrantly colored refreshment. One afternoon we came back from sightseeing and I finally ordered a spritz. It was served in a goblet with lots of ice and fruit, and with my first sip our vacation soared to a new level of meraviglioso. Tom thought it would be better to punch it up a bit with a shot of vodka. The bartender reluctantly obliged. Since then, I rejiggered the traditional recipe so it can be prepared straight up, as a martini. You spike with vodka, shake, and top with a spritz of prosecco. Trust me, this icy-cold favorite of mine will turn a warm afternoon or evening into a special Italian sojourn.
1. Freeze a martini glass for 30 minutes. Remove the glass from the freezer, and immediately rub the orange wedge around the rim of the glass.
2. Combine the vodka and Aperol in a cocktail shaker filled with ice. Cover with the lid, and shake vigorously until thoroughly chilled, about 30 seconds. Strain into the prepared glass.
3. Top with chilled prosecco to taste. Garnish with the orange peel twist, and serve immediately.
1 small orange wedge
1/4 cup (2 ounces) vodka
2 tablespoons (1 ounce) Aperol
4 to 6 tablespoons (2 to 3 ounces) chilled prosecco
Orange peel twist
Hands on time