La Bella Primavera: Art of the Aperitivo

September 8, 2017

Bar Machiavelli’s head barman, Matteo, outlines why the blossoming of spring is the perfect time to enjoy the culture of the aperitivo…

Aperitivo Time

In Italy the the culture of taking the aperitivo has a very deep meaning. It’s not so much about the drink itself; it’s more about making the time to catch up with friends, celebrate the small wins of the day, commiserative over the losses, and enjoy a quiet drink before dinner. With spring in the air and the promise of warmer weather, parties and new beginnings, it’s the perfect season to enjoy ‘aperitivo time’ at Bar Machiavelli and make new acquaintances.

Aperitivi are made with a range of herbs and bitters designed to stimulate the acidity of your stomach and awaken the appetite. If taken after dinner, a digestivo can also help with digestion. I really do believe it works.

There are so many classic aperitivi to choose from: Aperol spritz, classic Negroni, Americano (a lighter, fresher riff on the Negroni), the vermouth-based Martini, a glass of prosecco or the sophisticated Bellini (we’re serving a beautiful passionfruit & vanilla Bellini right now).

Here at Bar Machiavelli we can serve you all the classics, but I like to create something new each week that captures the spirit of the season — something totally unique to our restaurant. With that in mind, here are a few of my favourite new aperitivi for spring. Hope to see you soon.

Ciao, Matteo


Harvest Spritz

It’s harvest time in my native Tuscany and yet the start of spring in Australia — a time of great contrasts, at least in my heart. To celebrate the contradiction of seasons I have done a twist on the classic spritz (pictured below, left). This Harvest Spritz one has a vodka base and is served with a dash of Australian dessert wine, elderflower cordial, lime juice and topped with prosecco. It’s a fresh and sweet drink, perfect to start your night off.

A Kiwi In Mexico

We all know how much Aussies love Kiwis, particularly when it comes to rugby (what is this Bledisloe Cup, and why can’t Australia win it back?). It’s coming to the end of the season for kiwi fruit, so I’ve paired it with some party-inducing Olmeca Altos Plata tequila, midori, fresh apple and lime juice, served over a tall glass with ice. Called A Kiwi in Mexico (pictured below, right), it’s fresh and exotic, with a touch of witchcraft in terms of its kick.

harvest spritz


I made this drink especially for the ladies of Bar Machiavelli as a kind of Sex In The City-inspired twist on the classic cosmopolitan. This one is made from a vodka base infused with marshmallows, marshmallow syrup, Cointreau, a touch of lime and cranberry juice for colour. It’s a sweet drink, intended to be sipped slowly as you catch up with friends before taking on the world (or just the night).