Showing posts with label apertif. Show all posts
Showing posts with label apertif. Show all posts

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  • Saturday, May 23, 2020

Amalfi Aperitivo Spritz (Ontario) - Cocktail Review



While enjoying the great weather we're having , I opened this Amalfi Aperitivo Spritz that recently launched at the LCBO. It is locally made with premium ingredients here in Ontario and comes in packs of 4 for $12.95.

What is an Aperitivo (Spritz)? The word "Aperitivo" is derived from the Italian verb "aprire" (ah-pree-ray) and means "to open". In Italian culture, an aperitivo is a bitter-sweet herbal meant to whet your appetite. An aperitivo "spritz" adds sparkling wine or soda water to the bitter-sweet aperitivo to make it more refreshing and perfect for hot weather - like today!

In the Amalfi Aperitivo Spritz, they use 22% real sparkling wine, and not "wine flavours" like other ready-to-drink cocktails. Their bitter-sweet aperitivo is made in-house using an infusion of burnt orange and tangerine peels, along with a blend of herbs and roots including quinine. To bring the alcohol down to a highly-quaffable 5%, they use both sparkling wine and soda water, making it well-balanced, easy to drink, and refreshing.

It is best enjoyed during Aperitivo Hour - which is like Happy Hour, but in the style of "La Dolce Vita" - giving particular importance to the inclusion of food and socializing (while practising physical distancing during these novel times). Aperitivo Hour is an Italian tradition that occurs every day at sunset when restaurants and bars set out small snacks, called "cicchetti" (chee-ket-eeh), to accompany the palate-opening drinks. As they say in Italy - Cin cin!

Amalfi Aperitivo Spritz

Tasting Note:

AMALFI APERITIVO SPRITZ - Ontario, Canada (#14515) (4 x 355 mL) - $12.95
This ready-to-drink cocktail has pleasing bitter-sweet flavours with touches of orange, citrus, and herbal root notes, while the spritz adds a crisp, refreshing mouthfeel and finish. Ideally served over ice in a stemmed wine glass and garnished with an orange.

Amalfi Aperitivo Spritz


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  • Sunday, July 24, 2016

Byrrh Grand Quinquina (France) - Review

Here's an interesting wine-based apertif I received to review and is now available at LCBO locations throughout the province.

Byrrh (pronounced "beer") was created in 1866 by brothers Pallade and Simon Violet in the small village of Thuir, France. Initially, it was distributed in pharmacies and appreciated for its medicinal benefits. Over time, Byrrh became a feature in bistros and grew in popularity through the Belle Époque (1890s - 1910s) and the Années folles (1920s). By 1935, Byrrh was the leading apertif brand in France with sales of more than 35 million litres.

The Bryrrh Grand Quinquina original recipe has remained unchanged since 1866 and is amazingly still produced in the original production facility in Thuir that was designed by Gustave Eiffel (of the famed tower) and created in 1873.

It is hand-crafted and produced by the maceration of the mistelles, naturally sweet and fruity wines (Macabeu and Grenache) which are then infused in alcohol with aromatic plants including coffee, bitter orange, colombo, cocoa, and the finest cinchona (quinine) barks. The final blend is then aged several years in one of the world's largest oak vats (1 million litres).

Byrrh Grand Quinquina - Roussillon, France (87 pts)

Tasting Note:

BYRRH GRAND QUINQUINA - Roussillon, France (#440909) (S) - $14.90
Grapey, caramel, nutty, golden raisin aromas, along with hints of sweet spice from the glass. Viscous, silky mouthfeel that's slightly warming with flavours of blackberry, orange peel, raisin, some potpourri and walnut. The palate is initially sweet, but finishes long and on the earthy, nutty side. Ideal as an apertif. I enjoyed this well-chilled, but it can also be mixed into a cocktail. Score: 87 pts

Serving Suggestions:

Byrrh on the Rocks - Served on ice

Byrrh Tonic - 1 part Byrrh Grand Quinquina, 1/2 freshly squeezed Lemon, 1 part Tonic water

Byyrh Blood & Sand - 1 part Byrrh Grand Quinquina, 1 part Te Bheag Scotch Whisky, 1 part freshly squeezed Orange Juice, 1 part Cherry Heering or Filthy Black Cherry


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