What Exactly Is an Aperitif?

Last Updated on March 12, 2023 by asifa

What is an aperitif? Well, it’s not just any drink. The word “aperitif” comes from the Italian word ‘aperitivo,’ which originated from the Latin verb ‘aperire,’ meaning ‘to open.’ An aperitif typically opens up your appetite for food before dinner or lunch by stimulating your stomach acids with alcohol.

A typical appetiser may be wine, beer, sparkling water with lemon juice and sugar, or even coffee. After finishing this article, you might be tempted to try out different aperitif ingredients—don’t hold back!

When do you serve an aperitif?

An aperitif can be served before dinner, but it doesn’t have to be. Sometimes people like to drink an alcoholic beverage after work with their friends or colleagues simply because they enjoy socialising and unwinding together. If you’ve ever had an evening cocktail with your partner on the couch while watching TV, then that’s perfectly fine, too! 

Really, as long as what you’re drinking isn’t interfering with dinner plans later in the night, there are no rules for when you should consume it other than your own preference.

The best time of day to serve up this kind of drink is between meal times, preferably around 5 o’clock, so it’ll give plenty of time until bedtime (it may also help stimulate your appetite!).

How do you serve it?

When serving an aperitif, always place it on the table before dinner so guests can help themselves whenever they please. If you’re having wine or beer, make sure to have a variety of glasses—smaller ones for those who want to just have a sip and larger ones for those who want to drink more.

If you’re providing cocktails, put all of the ingredients out on the bar so people can mix their own drinks according to their taste. You don’t really need much special skills behind the bar. Just make sure everything is organised and within reach to make it easier for everyone.

Invite friends and acquaintances to your home!

Serving an aperitif gives you the opportunity to introduce your guests to something new and different. Who knows, some of them could be having it for the first time—and they have you to be thankful for as the party host.

An aperitif is typically used as a conversation starter because its unique flavour will encourage people’s curiosity—’What’s in this? How does it taste?’ It will create excitement over what might lay ahead at dinner tonight.

If you’re going for wine or beer, make sure they are dry drinks (not sweet), so all of those acids go straight into your stomach instead of being absorbed by other food on their way down there. You don’t want anything else getting caught up with them around dinner time since any kind of mixing between different flavours can easily result in an upset stomach.


Aperitifs are a great way to start off an evening, get people chatting and stimulate your appetite for dinner. Serve them up at home before your next gathering and see how everyone enjoys them. Cheers!

Read More: 7 Exciting Things You Need to Know About Aperitifs