I have been trying to write a post for the past couple days.  One that would reflect on 2011 and wrap it up tightly;  something special to share with each of you.  The words are on the tip of my tongue, but I cannot seem to get them on paper so to speak.  I think I need to continue reflexing these last few hours; absorb the rest of the minutes and then breath.

In the meantime, I am going to share the last post of 2011 with you all.  Something slightly sweet, and slightly tangy.  Festive and bubbly.  Worth making and toasting a new year with the ones you love.

We spent most of this month drinking bottles of champagne.  Oh MY, does that make it sound as if we have a problem?  We were playing around (i.e.. developing recipes) with assorted alcohol and champagne for a champagne cocktail series that Maggie is hosting this week and decided to make a few extras to share with you.  All the champagne cocktails were favorites but this one we really took a liking too.

Aperol – are you familiar with it?  If not, here is a little history on a favorite around our house.  Aperol is an Italian aperitif that was created in 1919 by the Barbieri brothers in Padova, Italy.  It is known for it’s signature orange color and bittersweet taste.  I love how the tang lingers on the back of my tongue. The recipe for Aperol has not changed since the early days;  it is still made with a select list of ingredients including sweet and bitter oranges and other herbs and roots.  As well it is still a secret recipe!  I love that, in the early days, it was being marketed as a liqueur for folks interested in keeping lean and fit thanks to the low alcohol content.  Today it is a classic aperitif that is enjoyed by many, including us.

We usually enjoy Aperol on ice with a wedge or twist of orange, while cooking dinner or on a hot summer day.  This time we decided to play around with using it in cocktails.  The champagne added a nice sweetness to the bittersweet taste, and the bubbles were just plain fun.  It kind of reminded us of a bubbly Negroni.  I am pretty sure this will be served as a pre-dinner drink at many of our upcoming cocktail parties!

Be always at war with your vices, at peace with your neighbors, and let each new year find you a better man.  ~Benjamin Franklin

We wish each of you a safe New Years Eve and a New Year filled with Joy!

Denise & Lenny


Recipe:  Aperol Champagne Cocktail


  • 1 oz aperol
  • champagne
  • lime swirl, for garnish

How To:

  1. In a champagne glass add the aperol.
  2. Top off with champagne.
  3. Garnish with a lime swirl.
  4. Serve.
  5. Drink.




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