Woman drinking aperol spritz with friends

Types of Italian Aperitivi

Italy is a land of many traditions. One of the Italian traditions concerning food and drink that has become popular in America over the last five years or so has been the aperitivo. The Italians are famous for celebrating the aperitivo hours, which coincide with the sunset and last between 6 pm to 8 pm in the evening. Italians partake of aperitifs to stimulate the appetite. This is a chance to unwind and ruminate over the events of the day. The drinks that are typically consumed during these hours are of a bittersweet variety and even reflect the golden colors of the sunset. 

Popular Types of Italian Aperitivo

We will now discuss the 7 most popular types of Italian aperitivo available in the market. 


This popular Italian aperitivo was the brainchild of Gaspare Campari who created the drink in 1860. It is characterized by its dark red color and is used in cocktails. It is commonly served with soda water or citrus juice. It is an essential ingredient in the Negroni, the Americano, the Campari Soda, the Boulevardier, the Old Pal and the Garibaldi. It is commonly mixed with prosecco as a spritz. It is bitter with notes of gentian, bitter orange and grapefruit. It can be had on its own or in a cocktail. 

Italicus Rosolio di Bergamotto

This liqueur once ruled the roost in Milan and Turin but was banned by King Victor Amadeus III who preferred vermouth. The launch of Italicus Rosolio di Bergamotto in 2017 has brought back its popularity. Its taste comes from bergamot (a type of orange) and cedro (akin to lemon), giving it a balance of floral and citrus notes. 

Select Aperitivo

This drink is a combination of thirty botanicals, including rhubarb root and juniper. Its ruby red color has a taste of spice and citrus. It is served neat or as a Venetian spritz served with prosecco or white wine and soda water, with a green olive as garnish.


Aperol is one of the most popular bitters in Italy and is made with thirty herbs, spices and fruits including bitter and sweet oranges, rhubarb and gentian root. It was launched by Silvio and Liugi Barbieri in 1919 in Padua. Italy. 

Ramazzotti Aperitivo Rosata

This brand hails from Milan. It is defined by its fruity and floral flavor which comes from orange blossom and hibiscus flowers. It has a low alcoholic content. It goes well with tequila, gin and vodka. 

Aperitivo Cappelletti

It is made by Antica Erboristeria Cappelletti, which has been producing it since 1909 from Aldeno in Northern Italy. It is created from a grape wine base, which makes it drier than others. It derives its carmine color from cochineal beetles. It can be enjoyed as a spritz or on its own. 

Contratto Bitter

It is inspired by a 1933 recipe with Italian brandy as base and infused with herbs, spices, fruits, vegetables and seeds. With a 22% ABV it can be used any classic cocktail like the Boulevardier or the Negroni. 

So there you have it- a compendium of knowledge on the 7 best Italian aperitivi to preclude your evening dinners and set you up for a relaxing night. Join us at Nico, where you’ll find a premium selection of wine and aperitifs, along with authentic Italian dishes to share with the ones you love. Book a dinner reservation today1

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