Reprinted from “Nothing Fancy.” Copyright © 2019 by Alison Roman. Photograph copyright © 2019 by Michael Graydon and Nikole Herriott. Published by Clarkson Potter, an imprint of Penguin Random House, LLC.
I am a huge fan of the spritz—Aperol spritzes, Campari spritzes, Cappelletti spritzes, white wine spritzes; basically anything that can be spritzed, I’ll spritz it. I prefer to think of the low-ABV spritz as a light, easy refreshment rather than “a cocktail.” This allows me to drink several over the course of many hours without getting unreasonably drunk. Ditching the word cocktail also allows me to use a ratio, not a recipe. (No disrespect to spritz recipes, but let’s just say that in no universe am I busting out a small measuring cup to make a cocktail as casual as this.) Looking and tasting like a fantasy vacation, spritzes are universally appealing and bring joy to everyone who is lucky enough to be drinking one.
There are many ways to make one of these delightfully effervescent beverages, and I don’t think anyone should feel hemmed in by exact measurements or specific ingredients. My most basic version involves a third sweet-bitter liquor (such as Aperol, Campari, Cappelletti, Lillet, or Suze—there are lots out there, so feel free to experiment), a third sparkling or even regular wine (while I don’t encourage the drinking of sub-par wine, this is actually a good time to use a bottle of sub-par wine), and a third soda water (seltzer or club soda). Keep in mind that these ratios will not be the same depending on where you go and who you ask, but this is a good place to start.
Sweet-bitter liquor, such as Aperol, Campari, Cappelletti, Lillet, or Suze
Sparkling wine, regular white wine or rosé
Citrus slice, wedge or peel
Fill a large glass of your choosing (rocks glass, wineglass, highball glass, anything goes!) with ice. Fill it one-third of the way with a sweet-bitter liquor, such as Aperol, Campari, Cappelletti, Lillet, or Suze. From here, top with one-third sparkling wine or regular white wine or rosé, and then top the remaining third with soda water. Garnish with a lemon, orange, or grapefruit slice, wedge, or peel. Now go forth and spritz away into the night (or day)!