The Winter Aperol Spritz

Here is a seasonal twist on a summer favorite. Introduced in 1919, Aperol is an Italian Aperitif made from Rhubarb and bittering agents. It is a mildly sweet, subtly bitter liqueur that has been enjoyed over the years in many fashions but none as prominent as the Aperol Spritz. A summer cocktail with a recipe as simple as 3,2,1. In a red wine glass or goblet filled with ice add; three parts Prosecco, two parts Aperol and one part club soda. This is garnished with a generous slice of orange. The drink is refreshing and deserves its place among one of the most popular summer cocktails. As summer wains and the temperature dips, so do the sales of Aperol and the imbibing of the Aperol Spritz.

Last fall we explored other seasonal options for Aperol and came across a clever variation that is not quite as simple as the summer Spritz, but well worth the work in preparation.  Found online, this is the creation of UK caterer, Emily of the “Emily Eats” blog. This recipe of the Spritz employs the use of spiced Port syrup that adds warm bakery spice characters to the drink, making it a natural for cool weather.  The Port syrup is addictive and not only plays well with Aperol, but embellishes a classic Manhattan in the most wonderful way. Below we offer you Emily’s recipe, but suggest you double the batch for Port syrup, lest you be back in the kitchen in short time craving more. We have also converted her recipe from metric to imperial measures. The Winter Aperol Spritz is the perfect fall/winter ice breaker to greet your guest with which will bring you rave reviews. Give it a shot!

 Port Syrup (Makes 2 cocktails)

  • 8 Ounces Port wine (we suggest a well-bred Ruby Port)
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 1 star anise
  • 4 cloves
  • 3 tablespoons sugar
  • A thumb size piece of orange peel

 To Create the Syrup:

1) Put the port, spices, sugar and orange peel into a pan and bring to the boil.

2) Reduce the heat so the liquid is simmering. Reduce until you have a thick port syrup. Remove from the heat to cool. To cool quickly, put the pan in a sink of cold water.

 Ingredients To Make the Winter Aperol Spritz:

  • Large wine glass
  • Ice
  • Prosecco
  • Port Syrup
  • Orange Slice


Fill a large wine glass with ice to the top. Add 2 ounces of the port syrup to the glass. Then add 2 ounces of Aperol. Top the glass up with approx 5 ounces prosecco (or just do it by eye) and stir. Top up with ice if needed.

You can make a batch of the port syrup, it will last up to 6 months if kept in an air tight bottle.