Are you ready to learn all about the Venetian spritz?
This guide looks at what the Venetian Spritz is and includes a list of the best places to drink Spritz, my tips on how to enjoy a Spritz in Venice and Spritz tours.
The Spritz is one of the most loved aperitif cocktails, prepared by mixing white wine, bitter or liqueur and a splash of seltzer or sparkling mineral water.
If you didn’t already know, the Venetian Spritz is much more than a cocktail though, in fact in Venice it’s seen as a symbol of togetherness.
For Venetians, happy hour is taken quite seriously and it’s an inevitable ritual: a moment of sharing with colleagues, an opportunity to meet old friends and a way to turn a bad day into a good one or even to make your day even better.
With out further ado, let’s go further into this quite interesting aspect of the Venetian drink culture and learn more about the Venetian Spritz.
Thanks to this drinking guide, you’ll learn exactly what the Venetian Spritz is, where it actually came from, and how it is prepared each and every day in Venice.
Then, I’ll go on to cover some of the places where you can taste the best Spritz in Venice, I’ll even share my Spritz walking map and some of my personal tips.
Towards the end, you will also find some of the best Spritz tours in Venice that you can join to get deeper understanding of Venetian Spritz life.
What is Spritz in Venice?
The Spritz is a very popular alcoholic aperitif that originated in north-east Italy.
This is how a Spritz is generally prepared:
- ⅓ Prosecco wine or still white wine;
- ⅓ bitter aperitif such as Aperol, Campari or Select;
- ⅓ sparkling water or seltzer.
Normally it gets added a slice of a citrus fruit (lemon or orange) and an olive.
Spritz is the official name, but in Venice it’s commonly called ‘Spriss’ or more often, ‘Sprisseto’ in Venetian dialect. It derives from the German verb ‘spritzen’, to spray, that recalls the gesture of adding water to wine.
According to Spritz history, the famous aperitif was born during the period of Habsburg domination in the Veneto region, in the 1800s.
The soldiers, but also merchants, diplomats and other workers of the Habsburg empire based in Veneto, got used to the local habit of drinking wine in the tavern.
The problem is that they weren’t at ease with the great variety of high alcohol content of the Veneto wines, hence the request to the local innkeepers to sprinkle a little water inside the wines to make them lighter.
Today, the Venetian Spritz is nothing less than the main character of any respectable Venetian aperitivo and a genuine favourite of many participants.
Locals like to accompany a glass of Spritz with cicchetti (small savoury bites similar to Spanish tapas). Some bars serve some crisps and a small bowl of olives too.
Where to buy Spritz in Venice
You can drink a Venetian Spritz in many different settings, starting from the original locations, the bacari, then cocktail bars, historic bars and hostels too.
Normally a Spritz costs between 2,50 to 4 euros. But in St. Mark’s Square you can easily spend 20 euros! Bear this in mind because you can make huge savings.
Venice Spritz map
I invite you to see my Venice Spritz map below! These are the taverns, bars or cafes where I can guarantee you that you can drink a good Venetian Spritz.
My favourite places to drink Spritz in Venice from the map:
Best Spritz in Venice
Even if you only have 1 day in Venice during your time here, be sure you take some time out to taste the authentic Venetian Spritz before leaving the city.
Here’s a couple of personal tips to enjoy a Spritz like a Venetian does:
Last but not least, see the table below, showing the Venetian Spritz variations you can order in any bacaro and tavern around Venice historic centre.
|Aperol Spritz||Ice first, ⅓ of still white wine (or prosecco), ⅓ Aperol, ⅓ soda and an orange slice. Usually served on a goblet.|
|Spritz Campari||Ice first, ⅓ white wine (or prosecco), ⅓ Campari and ⅓ soda. Served on a goblet or rock glass.|
|Select Spritz – the real Venetian Spritz!||⅓ wine (or prosecco), ⅓ Select and ⅓ soda. To be served on a rock glass (rock).|
|Cynar Spritz||⅓ wine (or prosecco), ⅓ Cynar, ⅓ soda, served on a rock glass, with ice and a lemon slice.|
|Hugo Spritz||Ice first, ⅓ prosecco, ⅓ elderberry syrup, ⅓ soda, to garnish with a green apple slice and mint.|
Spritz Tours in Venice
Whether you’re passionate about cocktails and aperitif or just want to get more into the Venetian drinking culture, these Spritz tours in Venice will be perfect for you!
Spritz Walking Tour with 4 Spritzes and Local Snacks
For example, this Spritz walking tour is ideal for you if you really want to get a real taste of the authentic Venetian drinking culture.
During this tour you’ll try 4 different Spritz variations, accompanied by small snacks like the popular cicchetti. Your local guide will take you to taverns usually frequented only by locals, so you can dive deeper in the Venetian lifestyle and share the experience with locals.
During the walking tour, you’ll also see some unknown gems of the city, mainly located in the Cannaregio district and Jewish Ghetto.
Venice Art Walking Tour with Spritz and Gondola Ride
In Venice, a city where you can find artistic and architectural gems of outstanding beauty on every corner, why not join this art walking tour with Spritz tasting and gondola ride? It offers a unique way to connect with the local food & wine scene.
During the tour you’ll learn more about Venice’s history and art, and get introduced to Venetian drinking and food culture too! Your local guide, expert in history and art, will take you around St. Mark’s Square and then pass by the Doge’s Palace and Bridge of Sighs.
During the tour, you’ll also drink Spritz and taste some cicchetti. See the city from a different perspective: its canals! You’ll be pleased to know that in this art and food tour experience a 30 minutes gondola ride is included.
Catamaran Spritz Tour
Is there anything better than having aperitivo with a refreshing Spritz in front of spectacular views of the Venetian lagoon?
By joining this Catamaran Spritz tour, you can experience that! Get away from the crowds of St. Mark’s Square and Rialto Bridge, to relax surrounded by this fascinating lagoon in a catamaran.
There will be a lot of space to take a seat and chill whilst sipping a nice Venetian Spritz and Prosecco, or other drinks that you can order at the bar.
During the catamaran tour, expect to pass by the beautiful Santa Maria della Salute church, Zattere promenade, Giudecca canal, Lido of Venice and go back to the Giardini della Biennale.
With this guide, I’ve not only shared factual information about the Venetian Spritz and its history, but also where you can taste a good Spritz in Venice city centre.
Here you can find personal tips to experience the Spritz ritual just like the Venetians do! If you’re traveling to Venice soon, be sure to save the Spritz walking map I created for you on your phone as it has a list of taverns I personally tested.
Remember to try the Spritz variations to find your favourite while visiting Venice! Also, take a look at my food in Venice guide for more ideas on what to eat and drink.
📌 Like this article? Click to Pin it…
If you found this Venice travel guide helpful, feel free to buy me a virtual coffee here.
“Dear traveller! Some links in this post contain affiliate links. Meaning, if you click through and make a tour booking or reserve a hotel, I may earn a small commission at no additional cost to you. Your support means a lot to me and helps me to keep creating and maintaining the quality of this site for you.”