Italy has given us so many treasures. Sure, it’s responsible for incredible art, architecture and music. And no one can deny the importance of pasta, one of life’s true pleasures. But we speak of cocktails—specifically the aperitivo, a light, low-ABV drink that stimulates the appetite, fosters conversation and helps you pass the time before dinner.
Italy’s well-known aperitivos include the Americano, Aperol Spritz and Negroni, but one often-overlooked example is the Bicicletta, a simple three-part cocktail that combines dry white wine with Campari and sparkling water. Yes, that’s it. Mixing the drink is as easy as riding a bike.
The Bicicletta is similar to the Aperol Spritz, which contains Aperol, prosecco and sparkling water. The Bicicletta provides more of a bitter bite due to the Campari, and it receives its effervescence solely from the club soda. If you like one of the two drinks, you’re nearly assured to enjoy the other.
When making the Bicicletta, enlist a dry white wine that you’d drink even outside of a cocktail, such as a pinot grigio or sauvignon blanc. It doesn’t need to be expensive, but considering that you’re using three full ounces, you want it to be good. Throw in a couple orange slices for a flavorful garnish, and you’re all set.
Sip the Bicicletta on a sun-drenched patio in Italy, or make it at home and pretend you’re on a sun-drenched patio in Italy. Drinking a good cocktail really helps to sell it.
3 ounces dry white wine (such as pinot grigio or sauvignon blanc)
2 ounces Campari
Club soda, chilled, to top
Garnish: 2 orange wheels
Add the white wine and Campari into a double rocks glass or a wine glass.
Fill the glass three-quarters with ice, top with club soda, and stir gently and briefly to combine.
Garnish with 2 orange wheels.