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5 Classic Italian Cocktails for Every Type of Drinker

Italy is known throughout the world for its delectable food – the classic Neapolitan pizza, focaccia, gelato and Carbonara; and of course over here wine is drunk more than water. But what most people forget is that Italy is also home to some of the most delicious cocktails.

So, whether you like the boozy punch or a fruity mix of cocktails, we're sure you'll find something you'll love in good old Italia! From aperitifs to stronger concoctions, there's something for every type of drinker in our list of top 5 classic Italian cocktails!

1. Negroni

Created by Count Camillo at Caffè Casoni in 1919, the bitter Negroni is now one of the most popular Italian cocktails! How did it come about? Inspired by Count Camillo’s passion for travel, when he returned from England, The count quickly realized that the Americano cocktail wasn’t strong enough. So, he made the barman swap the soda water in this cocktail with Gin. Thus the Negroni was born!

Negroni is a bittersweet cocktail that combines Gin, Campari, Vermouth and Angostura Aromatic Bitter, to create a short, smooth cocktail. Locals in Italy state that the Negroni is appropriate to drink at any time of day, so sip away!

2. Hugo

The perfect summer cocktail, the Hugo is as refreshing as they come. Hugo is perfect to sip anytime to keep you cool on a hot summer’s day.

Deliciously simple, the Hugo combines the subtle flavours of Prosecco and Elderflower, soda water and mint, which is poured over ice and finished off with a slice of lime.

The Hugo was created in 2005 by Roland Gruber in the Trentino-Alto Adige region of north Italy. Despite only being 15 years old it's a huge hit with Millennials & Gen-Z.

3. Bellini

A cocktail for breakfast? How scandalous! But we’re definitely on board with this vacation must have! Bellini’s are an Italian tradition, mostly drunk at breakfast time on holidays. This cocktail is delightfully light, fruity and bubbly!

Created in Venice by Giuseppe Cipriani (yes the same famous restaurateur from Harry’s Bar) in 1948. Cipriani found a way to incorporate his favourite fruit, peaches, into a drink. The refreshing Bellini cocktail was born when he hand- squeezed peaches and combined the juice with sparkling wine.

Cipriana named the cocktail after Giovanni Bellini because the pink colour of this drink reminded him of Bellini’s famous paintings.

4. Garibaldi

Named after Italy's 'father of the fatherland', the Garibaldi is an iconic Italian cocktail. This cocktail combines Italy's signature liqueur, Campari with orange juice and a slice of orange. The Garibaldi is a refreshingly fruity cocktail that's perfect for sipping on a warm summer's evening.

The Garibaldi was invented in Novara in the 19th century to signify the unification of north and south of this beautiful country. Using Campari from the north and oranges from the south, Garibaldi is a very symbolic and popular cocktail amongst the locals.

5. Aperol Spritz

Milanese to the core, the Aperol Spritz is usually the first one that comes to mind when you mention Italian cocktails. The Aperol Spritz is a sweet, vibrant and refreshing cocktail that is more suitable to the hot summer months but is drunk all year around.

Aperol was first introduced in the early 1900s when two Italian brothers who inherited their father’s liquor company, and ended up creating the liquor Aperol.

The cocktail Aperol Spritz was created in the 50s features Prosecco, Aperol, soda water and an orange twist, that has been an Italian favourite for decades!

At Bella Vista Matera, we offer expertly crafted, ice-cold cocktails that tickle your taste buds and excite your senses. Come visit one of Italy's Coolest Cocktail Bars and try these tasty inventions!

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