The Aperitivo CultureA Sicilian Lifestyle Blog
What is aperitivo?
It is so much more than a category of beverages, it is a state of mind and even a time of day. Aperitivo culture dates back to the 5th century but became popular in Italy, France and Spain, around the 19th century. During its rise in popularity many bittersweet liqueurs were designed to aid digestion. These liqueurs are often included in typical refreshing aperitivo drinks such as Aperol Spritz, to open the drinker’s palate and stimulate their appetite in preparation for the main meal.
How we like to aperitivo
For us the joy of Aperitivo is bringing friends and family together through great food, drink and conversation! The cultural aspect brings us back to memories of moments in Sicily with its warmth and nostalgia, where just before dinner we would sit all together and tell each other about our day over stuzzichini and wine.
When back in London, during those early evenings, when we have just finished work and we are ready to unwind, the joy of aperitivo brings us a moment of pause and reflection. We sit together sipping on refreshing cocktails having delicious yet simple stuzzichini making plans for what we will have for dinner. That’s what is great about the aperitivo too, it’s not quite dinner but it gets you excited for the next culinary experience of the day. We are always thinking about what we will cook next!
Our 4 favourite aperitivo drinks:
- Aperol Spritz
- La Bedda
- A crisp white wine
- A cold refreshing beer
How you can aperitivo like an Italian
In Italy, aperitivo usually begins pre-dinner in the early evening. Due to popularity, many bars offer an aperitivo hour which is not actually an hour at all as it operates from 6pm-9pm. Also differing from the traditional ‘happy hour’, all drinks have a supplement charge added in order to serve them with free snacks such as olives, bruschetta and canapes, which are often presented on a buffet.