In winter, a warming negroni is one of our hands-down favourite cocktails, but summer calls for something a little lighter.
If you're not familiar with Aperol, Campari’s brighter cousin, now's the time to get acquainted. Best served with prosecco, a dash of soda and a slice of orange as an Aperol Spritz, this classic apertivo is drunk all across northern Italy, where it's been a staple at bars from Venice to Florence for decades.
The Spritz will be on show this summer at Club Aperol at Fatto Bar and Cantina in Southbank. From 5pm to 7pm, Wednesdays to Sundays, pop down to the banks of the Yarra for apertivo, where the signature cocktail will be served up for just $7.
Fatto’s bartenders are getting into the spirit, mixing spritz and other cocktails that highlight Aperol’s versatility. The Venetian Cooler looks to be a standout, with Aperol, Cinzano Rosso and mandarin syrup, topped with sparkling grapefruit juice.
Club Aperol has been designed as a country club in the city, a place to sit back and enjoy the views of the city skyline on the beautiful river terrace, or get into the country club spirit with a round of bocce. Those feeling competitive can sign up for the bocce tournament, running Fridays and Sundays from 5pm to 7pm.
Come January 15, Club Aperol will be all about the tennis, and it will be out with the bocce and in with table tennis.
If all that sport is making you a little bit peckish, tuck into the delicious menu, specially designed by the Fatto chefs to complement the cocktails.
That won't be the last you see of Aperol this summer, as it hosts Aperol Gardens and Sunset Sessions all across the city.
For a sophisticated take on Friday night drinks head down to Campari House rooftop or Ludlow Bar & Dining Room on Saturdays in Southbank for Aperol Sunset Sessions, featuring $10 Spritz.
Over at Richmond's Royal Saxon, while away long Sunday afternoons over a Spritz or two and soak up some chilled beats in their sunny courtyard. Riverland, overlooking the Yarra in Federation Square, will also be hosting Aperol Sunset Sessions right through until March, serving up bite-size cichetti, the Venetian take on tapas.
This article is presented by Club Aperol, running at Fatto Bar and Cantina from December 3 to February 2.
Photography: Fatto Bar & Cantina