The rituals of the Italo-Québécois apéro

11 avr. 2024

But what is the aperitif?

In Italy, the aperitivo is sacred. When 5 p.m. strikes, Italians leave work to gather in bars for a good Spritz, or they invite friends to enjoy a Negroni at home. They know when the evening begins, but not when it will end. Time stops for the aperitif.

"In Italy, the aperitif is a daily ritual," emphasizes Mario D'Amico, founder of Spiritueux Iberville. "It's a cherished moment of grace. Quebecers are fans of '5 à 7', but I encourage them to incorporate some elements of the Italian ritual to further appreciate the aperitif hour."

Mario therefore suggests changing your view of '5 à 7' and adopting the rituals of the Italo-Quebec aperitif. Here are the rules to follow to dive into the aperitif, with a glass of Amermelade Spritz in hand:

  1. Adopt the aperitivo mindset

    The first thing to do when the aperitif hour arrives: get into the mindset of this blessed moment. The ritual: put away your cell phone and stop thinking about work and everyday troubles. "We work a lot, our life is a mad rush, so the aperitif should be a time out that we grant ourselves during which we forget about work and our problems, and during which we are only in the present moment," says Mario. Take advantage of it to stop time, to enjoy the present moment.

    The word aperitif comes from the Latin "apertivus," which means to open.

  2. Create your own aperitif rituals

    The aperitif can be experienced in several ways: in a bar, in a restaurant, at home, with friends, family, with a partner, or even alone. It only takes creating our own rituals, regardless of the place or the people with whom we experience the aperitif.

  3. Drink easy-to-make cocktails

    What do we drink at the aperitif? "Light, easy-to-prepare cocktails, made in two or three simple steps. The host should invest their time to be with their guests, not to get into mixology. Just think about making ice, and that's it!" explains Mario. 

    The ritual: take the time to personalize what we really want to toast to, instead of opting for the traditional "Cheers!"

  4. Think simplicity

    One of the fundamental principles of the aperitif is to entertain without stress. No one has the right to complicate life during the aperitif, which is why we accompany our cocktail with whatever is at hand.

    The ritual: create a platter of cold and delicious foods, such as cheeses, cold cuts, nuts, olives, and good bread.

    "It's not true that we're going to prepare a meal. We embrace the aperitif style with foods that require no preparation. We just have to arrange them in the middle of the table and not touch anything for the rest of the evening. If there are leftovers, we wrap it all up before going to bed and make a sandwich the next day at lunchtime." suggests Mario.

  5. Stretch the pleasure of the aperitif

    Finally, the most important thing is that the aperitif and the pleasure last as long as possible. The ritual: do not look at the time during the evening and stay as long as possible to solve the world's problems around the table. The aperitif has no end!

    Indulge yourself, adopt the rituals of the aperitif. It's Spritz time!

Friends having apero
Friends having apero