How to make a real Italian "aperitivo"

Long, hot evenings when the sundowns illuminates the sky in tones of peach, while in the east night is falling: having an aperitif in these delightful moments is traditional, almost a ritual for millions of Italians. Having an aperitif is the moment when friends meet, eat something light before dinner and enjoy a moment of relaxation with a glass of good wine or a cocktail.

It isn’t by chance that the favourite wines for an aperitif are spumante (sparkling wine): with their bubbles and their play of perlage, they are light, lively and they accompany fingerfood and delicacies enjoyed before a dinner with friends. In Italy, they say that your appetite increases as you eat, and an aperitif is a perfect occasion for anticipating dinner and extending the pleasure of company.

An aperitif, though, can be a social event on its own, even without having programmed a dinner: the important thing is the moment, the idea of meeting friends and happily staying in each other’s company. This is why an aperitif should not be confused with the happy hour: it’s not a moment for buying two drinks at the price of one, but for uniting several friends on a single occasion! 
How to prepare an Italian aperitif.

Like everything in Italy, an aperitif comes in an infinite number of versions and accompanying drinks: in cities such as Milan very strong cocktails like Negroni are typical, while in other locations, for example the Veneto region, Prosecco is more popular. Consider one thing though: if you travel through Italy, you have to take part, because the aperitif is an institution, especially on Fridays.

For a perfect Italian aperitif, all you need to use is the main ingredient of our country: imagination! Put simple food, such as varieties of cold cuts, olives, and peanuts, on the table but don’t forget to serve a few varieties of cheese, better if hard. For a more sophisticated aperitif you can offer fingerfood, cold pasta or couscous, or tramezzino sandwiches, or even a Caprese salad: the important thing is variety, so that everyone present can add the things they prefer most to their plate.

The food should be served buffet-style, so each person is free to chat and entertain without having a fixed position (that comes with dinner!) and voilà, your aperitif is served!

Which wine to choose? 
For a sparkling aperitif, we recommend a wine that is the same colour as Italian sunsets: our Corvina Rosé Brut is a single grape spumante, made using the Charmat method in Valdobbiadene (Treviso), the area where Prosecco wine originates from. It is an aromatic Rosé Brut, fresh, with a persistent perlage. Perfect for an aperitif with friends, in true Italian style.

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