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Happy Hour at the Grill – Italian Style

These classic Italian cocktails are perfect for summertime grilling.


Our Massimo loves his Negroni. His recipe is simple, consisting of 1 part gin, 2 parts sweet vermouth and 2 parts Campari. It is served over ice with a slice of orange.

(In the United States it’s sometimes served “up” in a cocktail glass without ice.)

For summer time refreshment, I prefer the Negroni Spritz, which is a lighter, sparkling version of the Negroni.

Negroni Spritz

To a tumbler glass, add some ice cubes and the following:

1 oz. Campari

1 oz. sweet vermouth

3 oz. prosecco

½ orange slice

An even lighter version is the Aperol Spritz.  Although they are both Italian aperitif liqueurs, Campari and Aperol are quite different. Often considered the gentler cousin to Campari, Aperol is sweeter, has less alcohol and is generally less bitter. 

Aperol Spritz

2 oz. Aperol

3 oz. Prosecco

1 dash Club Soda

Add ice and a slice of orange to a nice big wine glass. Pour in the prosecco, the Aperol and a dash of soda.  Some prefer to omit the soda.

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