Amaro Spritz

Use the classic spritz ratio of 3-2-1 to make a bubbly Amaro spritz cocktail! It works with any Italian bitter: try dark, sweet Meletti for its caramel notes.

Amaro spritz

Looking for a refreshing, bubbly drink that’s light and carefree? Meet the Amaro Spritz! You may know the renowned Aperol spritz, in all its social media glory. But you don’t need Aperol to make a spritz! No, the classic spritz works with any Italian bitter: just follow the classic spritz ratio of 3-2-1. With our favorite amaro (Meletti), it’s glowing golden brown and tastes almost like cola, with caramely notes. Here’s how to make it!

What’s an Amaro spritz?

A Amaro spritz is cousin of the popular Aperol spritz, an Italian aperitif (that is, drink for before a meal). The spritz was invented back in the 1800’s in Italy as a way to water down sparkling wine by mixing in…well, water! It wasn’t until the 1950’s that the Aperol spritz took the form it has today. It’s a cocktail on the list of International Bartender Association’s IBA official cocktails, meaning that there’s an “official” definition. The Amaro spritz uses any type of amaro in place of the Aperol: which itself is an amaro (see below). Here’s what’s in a Amaro spritz:

  • Amaro (we recommend Meletti)
  • Sparkling wine, like Prosecco or champagne
  • Soda water (not tonic water)
Amaro spritz

First, what’s amaro?

Amaro is a family of Italian herbal liqueurs that taste bitter (amaro means bitter in Italian). It encompasses a wide range of spirits: the most famous being ultra-bitter Campari. At the other end of the spectrum is Aperol, sweet and barely bitter at all. But there are so many different varieties in between. Alex grabbed a bottle of dark, sweet Meletti for this recipe: and it hit a home run. Here’s why!

Use Meletti or a dark, sweet amaro in this spritz

Campari and Aperol are considered amari, which is the plural of amaro, if you’re keeping track. That means the Campari spritz and the Aperol spritz are technically an Amaro Spritz, too! But for this recipe, Alex and I wanted to change it up a bit and see what a spritz tastes like with something other than the two most popular Italian bitters.

Enter Amaro Meletti, a dark brown, sweet amaro. It’s rich and caramel-y, complex and balanced, with flavors from saffron to anise. Make an Amaro spritz with Meletti and it’s downright incredible! The caramel notes shine through, and it almost tastes like cola. Here’s a nice ranking of amaro (from least bitter to most) if you’re looking for some other options.

Other drinks to make with amaro? Try the uniquely delicious Paper Plane.

Amaro spritz

Step it up: try clear ice!

If you really want to take your Amaro spritz over the top, try making clear ice. This ice is crystal clear, with none of the cloudiness of normal ice. You can cut large chunks and they look just like a fancy bar! They take this drink to superstar level. All you need is 24 hours and a small cooler! Go to How to Make Clear Ice.

What’s the spritz ratio?

The classic spritz ratio is present in all spritzes, from Aperol to this amaro spritz. The basic idea is 3 parts sparkling wine, 2 parts liqueur, 1 part soda water. Once you’ve memorized this ratio (maybe you have already!), you can use it to make endless variations of spritzes. You can do them with any type of liqueur, outside of amaro too. Here are a few more spritz recipes to try:

  • St Germain Spritz This floral, refreshing drink is easy drinking: perfect for summer!
  • Aperol Spritz The original! It’s totally worth the hype.
  • Campari Spritz Bitter and bubbly, it’s a common spin on the Aperol spritz.
  • Lillet Spritz Light and breezy, it features Lillet Blanc and bubbles.
Amaro spritz

When to serve a Amaro spritz

The Amaro spritz cocktail is bubbly and refreshing, which makes it perfect for summer occasions. It’s perfect for sipping as a:

  • Summer drink
  • Before dinner drink (aperitif)
  • Cocktail hour drink
Print
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Amaro spritz

Amaro Spritz


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  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 3 minutes
  • Cook Time: 0 minutes
  • Total Time: 3 minutes
  • Yield: 1 drink 1x
  • Diet: Vegan

Description

Use the classic spritz ratio of 3-2-1 to make a bubbly Amaro spritz cocktail! It works with any Italian bitter: try dark, sweet Meletti for its caramel notes.


Scale

Ingredients

  • 2 ounces (4 tablespoons) amaro (like Meletti or Cynar), chilled
  • 3 ounces (6 tablespoons) Prosecco or other sparkling wine, chilled
  • 1 ounce (2 tablespoons) soda water
  • Ice (try clear ice!)
  • For the garnish: lemon wedge, a straw if you like

Instructions

  1. Add the amaro to a glass filled with ice and stir. Top with the sparkling wine and soda water.
  2. Squeeze in the lemon wedge and stir gently, then serve. Serve with a straw to minimize dilution!

  • Category: Drink
  • Method: Stirred
  • Cuisine: Cocktails

Keywords: Amaro spritz

More great bubbly cocktails

Here are a few more of our great cocktails to add to your repertoire:

  • French 75 Cocktail A sophisticated cocktail made with gin and lemon! Or browse more champagne and Prosecco cocktails.
  • Southside Fizz The Southside Fizz is a refreshing cocktail made with mint, lemon, lime, and gin: Tom Collins + a mojito! Top it off with soda water for a sparkle.
  • Tom Collins Cocktail This popular sweet sour cocktail is light and bubbly! Don’t forget the cherry.
  • Classic Mojito Perfectly balanced with lime, rum and fresh mint! This iconic Cuban cocktail is refreshing and just sweet enough.
  • Americano Cocktail This classic three ingredient cocktail is bubbly and refreshing, starring Campari and vermouth.
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About the Authors

Sonja Overhiser

Cookbook Author and writer

Sonja Overhiser is author of Pretty Simple Cooking, named one of the best healthy cookbooks of 2018. She’s host of the food podcast Small Bites and founder of the food blog A Couple Cooks. Featured from the TODAY Show to Bon Appetit, Sonja seeks to inspire adventurous eating to make the world a better place one bite at a time.

Alex Overhiser

Cookbook Author and photographer

Alex Overhiser is an acclaimed food photographer and author based in Indianapolis. He’s host of the food podcast Small Bites and founder of the recipe website A Couple Cooks. Featured from the TODAY Show to Bon Appetit, Alex is author of Pretty Simple Cooking, named one of the best vegetarian cookbooks by Epicurious.

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