The Aperol spritz may have some competition from the Hugo: a sparkling cocktail that is as delicious as the Aperol sans the bitterness. So if you've always wanted to get behind the trendy beverage but couldn't really stomach it, you may want to consider a Hugo. Ever since our own fizzled foray into the Aperol spritz, we thought we'd have to sit out of the trendy bubbly cocktail fad. Fortunately, we were recently introduced to a cocktail called the Hugo—and we're convinced it's going to become 2020's "it" drink.
This cocktail might be virtually unknown stateside, but it has some sturdy roots in Europe. Rumor has it that the Hugo was dreamed up by a bartender in South Tyrol, a region in northern Italy, looking for an alternative to the spritz. (We would say mission accomplished.) The Hugo wasn't invented until 2005, but it's already become a hit in countries like Austria, Germany, and Hungary.
An Aperol spritz and a Hugo have very different tastes. However, if you want to add another light, refreshing, and unapologetically Insta-worthy drink to your cocktail repertoire, we couldn't recommend this drink enough. Oh, and did we mention it's ridiculously easy to make? Feel free to adjust the recipe below to turn it into a big-batch cocktail at your next party.
The Cocktail Composition
A mix of Prosecco, elderflower liqueur, and some club soda for extra fizz, Hugos have all the fixings of a truly delicious beverage. It's so good we're planning to make it our go-to drink for the winter (because all those bubbles make it pretty festive), but really, this is a cocktail you could drink all year long.
If you don't have elderflower liqueur, which can be difficult to find, St-Germain will do the trick because it's made with elderflowers.
How to Make the Hugo
This cocktail is almost a guaranteed crowd-pleaser because all of the flavors are quite mellow and subtle. Perhaps the most robust flavor is the mint, but let's face it: Who doesn't love the taste of mint? The best part about this drink, though, is the fact that it's almost too easy to prepare. Like any cocktail, you can put your own special spin on the classic Hugo recipe. We'll share one of our favorites, from A Couple of Cooks.
1 ounce, chilled St-Germain
3 ounces, Prosecco
1 ounce, soda water
Fresh mint (for garnish)
Add the St-Germain to a glass filled with ice and stir. Top with the sparkling wine and soda water. Finish it off by adding the mint leaves for garnish.
That's it! Some people like to add a wedge of lime or orange for another little kick (aside from the mint). All of the ingredients come together in such a subtle and refreshing way, but the star is the St-Germain, which has elderflowers in it. Though the cocktail is definitely light, it does have an unmistakable floral quality to it, which, in our opinion, makes it unique.