There are myriad recipes for the classic Italian Spritz, a pre-dinner cocktail made famous by the glitterati who sipped the celebrated aperitif in the cafes of Venice and Trieste in the years that followed World War II. And there are perhaps just as many legends about its origins.
Whether it's made with Aperol or Campari, Spritz culture only continues to grow in Europe, where young people in Italy and beyond have made it the unofficial drink of their generation. Not only is it one of the most popular cocktails among European millennials today, it is also the catalyst in a nightly ritual of socialization that plays out across Italy, from north to south: the so-called aperitivo (ah-PEH-ree-TEE-voh), the Italian version of our happy hour, but with better food and without the flatscreen TVs.
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Over the past few years, Spritz fever has taken hold on this side of the Atlantic as well. From New York to San Francisco, mixologists and consumers alike have embraced this blend of a red bitter, sparkling wine and sparkling water as a new national pastime.
Last month, editor-in-chief of the online magazine PUNCH Talia Baiocchi and Leslie Pariseau (a former editor there) published a new book on the Spritz, its origins and its countless interpretations across the globe (Spritz, Ten Speed, 2016).
On Wednesday of next week, April 27, from 6 to 8 p.m., they will be presenting and discussing the book at Public Services, where they will also be hosting an Italian-style aperitivo.
Admission is $25 and includes a copy of the book. Advance tickets are available.