Cool Summer Drinks

July 28, 2009 / Local Interest
summerdrink1Heat wave arriving! What to order at the bar? (meaning, the café) Forget the numerous and appetizing beers which will have you sweating in a few minutes, forget coffee if you want to sleep and remember it’s a gaffe to order cappuccino in the afternoon or evening hours.

Choose instead one of the many red aperitivi such as Aperol, Campari or Martini which can be drunk on their own (liscio) or mixed with tonic water, mineral water, a bit of ice or even white wine to create a rainbow of colors. Another is Crodino, a golden colored non-alcoholic drink that has been around for a long time.

summerdrink2For a cool soda try Chinotto, a bitter cola drink. (Pronounced key-no-toe) See if you can find the best Chinotto, Neri, produced since 1949 using the natural mineral water of Nepi, just outside Rome. The precursor of Pepsi and Coca Cola, Chinotto is making a comeback thanks to its distinctive taste which people over 50 have described as a real nostalgia trip.

The pre-dinner favourite among Venetians is a spritz, made with Aperol and sparkling prosecco wine topped up with a bit of water. Sipping a spritz and munching on local chichetti while seated along a canal is the ultimate way to savour the summer aperitivo experience.

Mary Jane Cryan

by Mary Jane Cryan

Mary Jane is a historian, cruise lecturer, author and publisher of books on Italian history and central Italy has been residing in Italy for half a century.

See her award winning website and weekly blog posts on 50YearsInItaly for more about central Italy and to order books directly from the author.

4 Responses to “Cool Summer Drinks”

  1. Anette

    Here’s a great drink – try San Bitter (the red one) with prosecco. Or for something a little stronger, fill a glass with ice, a shot of vodka, half a small bottle of San Bitter and top it off with lemonade.

  2. Charles M. Luther

    Damn but I am tired of people telling me what to drink. If I want a capucchino then that is what I will drink. I have been traveling to Italy since 1951, before Ron was born. Back then there was no capucchino in the US and what you find now usually isn’t very good. Same with Gelato. So the barista thinks I am not ‘with it’? Gee, that really breaks my heart.

  3. Michael Marcelli

    which of all the mentioned drinks is sugar free, or at least, low in sugar?

  4. CeciliaBelenardo

    I’m a big fan of Aperol, but I’m going to try the Campari drink.Both are great for summertime,sitting in your yard before dinner.


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