Spirits & Liqueurs Liqueur

9 Spritzes to Try Right Now

The Aperol Spritz is a perennial favorite, but there's so much more to the genre.

Hugo Spritz
Hugo Spritz Image:

Liquor.com / Tim Nusog

It's unlikely you've let the last several summers pass by without sampling an Aperol Spritz. The bubbly orange cocktail has had a ubiquitous presence on bar and restaurant menus, at backyard parties, and more.

But the Spritz as a category encompasses so much more than the omnipresent orange cocktail. Its definition has morphed as it's moved out of its home country of Italy. In its most classic form, the Spritz is an aperitivo cocktail made with a bitter liqueur, prosecco and a splash of sparkling water. These days, one of those components might be changed (for instance, using a sweet liqueur rather than bitter, or a still wine rather than sparkling) or omitted entirely. Additional ingredients or flavors are commonly added. The possibilities are infinite.

The takeaway is, you can feel free to throw all the old rules out the window. If the drink is boozy and bubbly and appropriate for late-afternoon imbibing, it's fair to call it a Spritz.

These are 9 of our favorites.

  • Aperol Spritz

    Aperol Spritz

    Liquor.com / Tim Nusog

    The most common member of the Spritz genre, this simple cocktail is seen everywhere these days. To make it, just remember the formula 3-2-1: three ounces of prosecco, two of Aperol and one of soda water. For a fun twist, try using different bitter liqueurs instead of Aperol; artichoke-based Cynar is a great choice.

    Get the recipe.

  • Bicicletta

    Bicicletta cocktail

    Liquor.com / Tim Nusog

    Hewing much to the same form as its more popular Aperol cousin, this classic aperitivo uses still white wine rather than prosecco and Campari instead of Aperol. Other than that, the formula remains the same. A pair of orange slices provide the "wheels" of the drink's name.

    Get the recipe.

  • St-Germain Cocktail

    St-Germain Cocktail

    Liquor.com / Tim Nusog

    This drink takes the Spritz for a sweeter turn, using elderflower liqueur St-Germain instead of the Italian bitter. It can be made either with still wine, as it was in its original iteration, or with prosecco for a more festive touch. Finish it off with soda water for additional bubbles and length.

    Get the recipe.

  • Channel Orange

    Channel Orange cocktail

    Annie Park

     

    This Spritz variation comes from Seattle's amaro-focused bar Barnacle. Much more complex than the average Spritz, this one calls for using three different bitter liqueurs, plus grapefruit soda in place of soda water to make those flavors pop. Prosecco, however, is a constant.

    Get the recipe.

    Continue to 5 of 9 below.
  • Aperitivo #1

    Aperitivo #1

    Steven Freihon

    This recipe comes courtesy of New York City's award-winning bar Dante. Tequila and Aperol form its base, while Lillet blanc and bianco vermouth provide the wine-based component. Orange juice, passion fruit puree, mango vinegar and orange flower water join in, and it's all topped with sparkling water and a spray of orange blossom water.

    Get the recipe.

  • Tomato Spritz

    Tomato Spritz

    Liquor.com / Tim Nusog

    Tomatoes provide the main flavor component of this unusual Spritz, in the form of both tomato water and a shrub. Gin and vermouth provide the boozy backbone, topped with prosecco and soda water.

    Get the recipe.

  • Negroni Sbagliato

    Negroni Sbagliato

    Liquor.com / Tim Nusog

    If you love a Negroni, this large-format take on the classic cocktail's fizzy version will be your new summer favorite. One bottle each of Campari, sweet vermouth and prosecco go into the punch bowl along with ice and whatever seasonal fruit you like.

    Get the recipe.

  • Scarlet Spritz

    Scarlet Spritz

    Liquor.com / Tim Nusog

    This cocktail plays host to a plethora of unexpected flavors. Strawberry-infused Aperol, Lillet blanc and rhubarb bitters are stirred and strained into an absinthe-rinsed glass, then topped with sparkling wine. A garnish of a lemon twist and a strawberry hint at the fruity flavors within.

    Get the recipe.

    Continue to 9 of 9 below.
  • Hugo Spritz

    Hugo Spritz

    Liquor.com / Tim Nusog

    Essentially a riff on the St-Germain cocktail, this Spritz calls for a muddled mint sprig to be added to the mix of elderflower liqueur, prosecco and soda water. An additional mint sprig and a lemon wheel make for a bright and festive garnish.

    Get the recipe.