You know those sparkling, vibrant orange drinks you see people casually sipping out of oversized wine glasses, normally on sidewalks or beaches, looking glamorous in the summer? Yeah, that's Aperol. 

Last summer whilst I was in Italy, I recall myself becoming more and more aware of  the number of orange glasses popping up around me. I decided to order one to see what all the fuss was about. One sip, and I was hooked.  

When I got back to school in September, the cold and wet climate of Scotland didn't give me many opportunities to order my newfound soulmate of a liquid. However, now that it is officially summer, I can happily go back to ordering myself an Aperol Spritz whenever I want to. 

As you will probably gather by the end of reading this article, Aperol plays a large part in my life. It's a social drink, the sparkling component of the concoction makes every sip feel like a celebration, regardless of it's your birthday or it's just Wednesday. 

In order to make this article as comprehensive and informative as possible, I had to embark on some very difficult research...taste testing. Honestly, the lengths I go to in order to write an article.

What is Aperol? 

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Sophia Dearie

Aperol is an Italian aperitif. Aperitifs are dry rather than sweet alcoholic beverages, typically served before eating to help to stimulate an appetite. 

The alcohol content of Aperol is 11%, which is half of it's 'brother' drink, Campari. 11% alcohol content is similar to most wines (red, white, and rosé), that tend to have alcohol contents between 10% to 15%.

The Origins of Aperol 

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Sophia Dearie

Aperol was invented in 1919, but it wasn't until after World War II that Aperol really gained attention on a global scale. The Italian way of life, enjoying an 'apéritif' before dinner, took the world by storm. The slang word for apéritif is 'apéro', which is where the name for Aperol came from.

What Does Aperol Taste Like? 

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Sophia Dearie

The flavours noted in descriptions of Aperol are 'bitter orange, gentian, rhubard and cinchona among other ingredients'. 

Personally, I think Aperol tastes like a combination of a sweet melted orange popsicle, followed by a slight bitterness (similar to when you bite into a juicy piece of grapefruit). This is all wrapped up by the same feeling that you get when you drink a big, cold glass of sparkling water. 

Can You Drink Aperol Straight?   

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Sophia Dearie

During my extensive research, I found a bar that had an Aperol spritz happy hour. Fate? I think so. I decided to head over one Friday after work to let the research commence. 

Upon my arrival, I started speaking to a very kind bartender called Lewis. I told him about this article that I was writing, and asked a few questions. Lewis said the best, and most popular, way to drink Aperol is in the form of an Aperol spritz. From this suggestion, I ordered my first drink of the research process. 

After my first Spritz, I asked Lewis if you can drink Aperol straight. 'Do you want to try some?' he asked. 'All in the name of research!' I replied, a little too eager.

Straight up, Aperol is far too bitter for my liking. Lewis laughed at the face I pulled after trying the aperitif. Lewis let me know that many people order Aperol straight up, thinking that Aperol is always served in the form of a spritz. 

When Aperol was first invented, many people didn't like the bitterness of the drink, so they asked for some water to be spritzed and added—hence the humble beginnings of one of the worlds most favored cocktails.

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Sophia Dearie

Above is a photo of me enjoying my Aperol spritz, made by my new friend Lewis. 

What's the best way to drink Aperol? 

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Sophia Dearie

Go to a bar on a sunny day and order yourself an Aperol Spritz, you won't be disappointed. Due to the low alcohol content of Aperol, it's a great addition to any vodka punches, margaritas, or gin-based cocktails.

Look at the photo above for reference on how to sip on an Aperol spritz whilst people watching. A great summertime activity for anyone over the age of 18 (21 in the US). 

How to Make an Aperol Spritz

Sophia Dearie

The famous Aperol spritz is a super easy, but impressive drink that you can whip up in less than four minutes.

Get yourself some Aperol, Prosecco, soda water (or sparkling water), ice cubes, and some orange slices. Put your ice cubes in a glass (an oversized wine glass is preferred). First add 3 parts of Prosecco, followed by 2 parts of Aperol and then 1 splash of soda water. Top with an orange slice, and there you have it.

#SpoonTip: The orange slice acts as a nice fruity snack once you finish your drink. 

An Aperol Spritz is as easy as 3-2-1, and following the recipe will prevent the Aperol from settling at the bottom of the glass. Whip up this drink on the next sunny day in your future, wow your friends with some Aperol history and savour every sip. 

Happy Aperol season! I mean, summer!