What is an aperitif and why should I drink one?

WIN a bottle of Pampelle and Fluere! We are growing into our light-on-the-booze lifestyle. If you are also looking to lead a more conscious life, we reckon the French aperitif could be the answer to all your boozy woes

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I don’t know about you, but I’m trying to cut down on the alcohol I consume in a bid to live a healthier, mindful life. Clutching onto the last drawstrings of summer and being in high celebration mode is, however, proving to be a bit of a stumbling block!

A “no booze” drink is simply out of the question. And a sad glass of wine or a G&T as the only healthier options for the discerning drinker will not cut it either.

Truman & Orange founding partner, Rowan Leibbrandt. Photo: Supplied

But do not lose all hope and reach for that beer guaranteed to be the final nail in your beer belly coffin just yet, nana

Aperitifs are apparently all the rage in France and making their way to Mzansi’s shores. And they could be the answer to all your healthy drink troubles, if you ask me.

The word comes from the Latin amperire which means “to open” and they are usually delightfully light, often bubbly, not sweet but dry, and generally low in alcohol (given that alcohol affects the appetite).

Typically an aperitif is meant to prepare your palate and your digestive system ahead of a meal, says Truman & Orange founding partner, Rowan Leibbrandt.

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“An aperitif encompasses a wide range of drinks, for example a Martini or a Negroni could be considered an aperitif based on the alcohol being watered down with mixer, and their dryness,” he suggests.

Also, how bad and boujee will you look at the bar when you order a martini, instead of a cider?

The drink in our parents’ day may have been stiffer and more heavy-handed (it had to with Brenda Fassie’s Weekend Special blaring in the background), but we are totally cool with being discerning drinkers needing healthy options to wash our salmon down with.

Try these boozy recipes made with the needs of the new age drinker in mind:

Pampelle Tonic


50 ml Pampelle

Tonic water


  1. Combine 2 tots Pampelle with 100ml premium tonic water and garnish with
    a grapefruit wedge.

Fluère Gimlet (non-alcoholic)


60ml Fluère Original

20ml Lime cordial


  1. Add ingredients into a mixing glass, stir for 10 seconds, pour into a gimlet glass and drop in a maraschino cherry.

Competition time

Looking for a light kick in those last summer afternoon cocktails? Sign up for the Mzansi Flavour weekly mailer and you stand a chance to win a bottle of Pampelle and Fluére.

The carefully curated weekly newsletter, especially for foodies, contains secret tips, kitchen tricks and recipes from top chefs and cooks, as well as health, wellness, and lifestyle tips for living the soft life in 2021.

We’re so excited about the new look of our Mzansi Flavour newsletter that we are even looking to give away a bottle of Pampelle and Fluére from Truman & Orange when you sign up. Hurry now you only have until 22 March 2021 to stand a chance to win two bottles of luxury aperitif!

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