Are you looking for the perfect refreshing cocktail to drink during warmer weather? A cocktail that you really need to try making for yourself is the classic Americano.
The Americano cocktail is cool and crisp with a little bit of fizz. It’s an ideal option for summer festivities or casual pre-dinner drinks.
The Americano also has some serious heritage to it. It’s been a favourite for bartenders for well over a hundred years. But our Americano kits use local spirits to give this classic cocktail a modern Australian twist.
So, let’s jump right in and look at this incredible cocktail in depth!
The Fascinating History of the Cocktail Americano
The history of the cocktail Americano begins in the middle of the nineteenth century. The great Gasparre Campari began creating the Americano some time during the 1960s.
The story goes that Gasparre Campari wanted to create a more refreshing version of an older cocktail called the Milano-Torino. The Milano-Torino was a popular cocktail that combined vermouth and a bitter aperitif. These two ingredients came from the Italian cities of Milan and Turin—hence the name.
Sweltering in the hot Italian sun, Campari took the bold step of adding a dash of club soda to the Milano-Turino. It was an instant hit.
The birth of a classic cocktail!
In the 21st century, the tradition lives on. The Americano is actually still classed by the International Bartenders Association (IBA) as one of ‘The Unforgettables’. This is a list of timeless classic cocktails that bartenders must make to be crowned Bartender of the Year.
The Classic 3-Ingredient Americano – Just Add Orange
When it comes to ingredients, the Americano cocktail is stylish in its simplicity. There are only three ingredients in the Americano:
- Sweet vermouth
- Bitter aperitif
- Club Soda
- Orange slice
To help you understand a little bit more about the Americano, let’s go into some detail on these ingredients. This will give you a better understanding of the balance of flavours at the heart of this delicious drink.
Vermouth is a type of alcohol known as a fortified wine. This is a wine that has had a spirit added to it to make it a little stronger. The added spirit is usually brandy.
There are two main types of vermouth:
- Dry vermouth
- Sweet vermouth
The dry vermouth has a lighter body and is sometimes be a little bitter. As the name suggests, sweet vermouth is a little sugary with a fuller flavour.
The Americano cocktail calls for sweet vermouth.
Our Americano kits use the Australian made Maidenii Sweet Vermouth, which is based on a cabernet sauvignon wine. This beautiful vermouth is given its complex flavour by botanicals like strawberry gum, wattle seed, river mint, sea parsley, grapefruit zest, mace, and angelica root.
The role of the sweet vermouth in the Americano is to provide the ‘body’ of the drink. This gives the cocktail its sweetness, which then carries the bitter ‘notes’ of the aperitif.
There are a number of different aperitif bitters. Some of the common ones you will find at the bottle shop are Campari, Aperol, and Angostura.
Aperitif bitters are a kind of spirit made from fruit. But to give it its ‘bitter’ flavour, aperitif bitters are aromatised with botanicals.
Our Americano cocktail kits use the Australian VEVE Aromatic Aperitif. It provides the perfect Australian zest to keep you sipping through past sunset.
Besides the Americano, another famous drink that uses aperitif bitters is the classic Negroni cocktail. The Negroni uses vermouth and aperitif bitters, just like the Americano. But, instead of club soda, the Negroni has a measure of gin.
If you like the idea of swapping out the club soda for an extra gin kick, check out our Negroni cocktail kit. It uses the local Australian gin MeMo.
Club soda is carbonated water. Although simple, this ingredient has an esteemed history in the world of cocktail-making. It’s used in all sorts of spritzers and other cocktails.
Using a clean mixer like club soda means that the American cocktail calories are very low.
The pièce de résistance – an orange slice is the classic garnish for this cocktail. It provides just a hint of citrus and lifts the profile of the whole drink. Our Americano kits come with slices of Australian oranges.
Americano Cocktail Recipe
When it comes to the Americano recipe, cocktail makers of any level can produce a well-balanced drink without too much difficulty.
The IBA recommends that the Americano be made using the following amounts:
- 3cl vermouth
- 3cl Campari
- A splash of club soda
‘cl’ is a measure of liquid called the centilitre. It is equivalent to one one-hundredth of a litre or, in other words, one millilitre (ml).
Now, the steps of the recipe are as follows:
- Add ice to a highball glass
- Pour in the vermouth and aperitif bitters
- Add a splash of club soda
- Garnish with an orange slice
The ice is important to keep the drink chilled and to ensure the drink is refreshing on a hot day. Depending on your tastes, you may find that you want a little more than a ‘splash’ of club soda.
We recommend mixing the cocktail gently to ensure that the alcohol and soda mix evenly. Once poured, just a quick swizzle does the trick. This will give the cocktail a nice even flavour throughout. It will also help to cool the drink all the way through.
Don’t leave the drink too long though! It’s best sipped ice cold, while the drink is still fresh.
Enjoy Your Cocktail-Making!
Whether you are making an Americano cocktail or anything else, the most important thing is to enjoy the process. Take the time to mix the drink well and let the character of the spirits do the talking.
The Americano is a timeless classic that won’t disappoint you or your guests. Updated with an Australian twist, our Americano cocktail kits are the perfect way to ease you and your friends into a warm evening.
So, if you want to make the perfect Americano, just use one of our beautiful cocktail kits!