A wonderful Italian tradition that you will learn to love even if you are here for a short period of time. The Aperitivo is a pre-dinner drink. It is NOT happy hour, it is NOT a drink-all-you-can-to-get-drunk kind of thing. This ritual is a very serious matter. It’s a social moment that happens after work and before dinner. It’s that time lapse when you meet up with friends, co-workers, your loved one and just sit down. You chat, laugh, gossip, have a drink and wash your day away.
Wine, Prosecco or Spritz?
Aperitivo calls for Prosecco, it could be considered nearly mandatory. However throughout the years (and in Italian time that means centuries) various interesting variations have appeared that are worth experimenting. Maybe the most common one is the Spritz: a mix of prosecco with Campari, Aperol or even red wine, a dash of soda, a slice of orange or lemon and a couple of ice cubes. A very unique orangey/reddish cocktail that has become extremely popular.
If you are not keen on bubbles you can always turn to a glass of white wine: You can never go wrong that. And the selection out there is simply stunning! Italy is famous for it’s numerous grapes from north to south, so it’s just a matter of choice and personal palate.
Oh, and the best part of it all, is that along with your glass you get a selection of nibbles. The selection can range from peanuts to pistacchio and crisps, to small platters of cold cuts, cheese and olives with bruschetta and parmesan bites. Occasionally you will also find small portions of pasta or rice, it all all depends on the fantasy of the chef and what is trendy at the moment.
You will pick up this habit in no time, and it will be a tough one to break! You will be so looking forward to your Aperitivo time.