The Blood Orange and Black Currant Aperol Spritz – or simply The Bloody Spritz – is the perfect cocktail to make this Halloween.  Full of complex fruit flavours, this seasonal twist on the Italian classic cocktail, the Aperol Spritz, is light, bubbly and refreshing.  The addition of blood orange juice and the black currant liqueur Crème de Cassis turn this libation a a blood red colour, making it perfect for all your spooky celebrations.  Like a traditional Aperol Spritz, the Bloody Spritz is quick and easy to prepare, but delivers plenty of wow factor.  While this cocktail is perfect for Halloween, blood oranges are in season from October through March, so this gorgeous red drink is the perfect sipper for the holiday season and beyond.

A blood orange and black currant aperol spritz is served in a halloween themed glass, surrounded by black branches


Aperol is a sweet and slightly bitter Italian apéritif that is bright red-orange in colour.  At only 11% alcohol, Aperol is often mixed with Prosecco and sparkling water to make a light and breezy Aperol Spritz.  This cocktail is classically served as a light pre-dinner drink designed to whet the appetite. It’s known in Italian as an Apéritivo, or Apéro for short.  See what they did there? Apéritivo, Apéro…Aperol.  It’s all making sense.

Crème de Cassis is a sweet, dark red liqueur made from black currants.  It is most famously used in the Kir Royale, a classic but simple French cocktail featuring Champagne with a splash of Crème de Cassis.  Also low in alcohol at 15%, it adds delicious berry flavour to this Blood Orange and Black Currant Aperol Spritz without adding too much potency.  If you wanted to reduce the alcohol content even further, the Crème de Cassis can be replaced in this recipe with non-alcoholic black currant syrup, such as Ribena.  



Since a spritz cocktail is designed to be a light pre-dinner drink, I like to serve these Bloody Spritzes with small bites, usually of the salty variety.  Plain, quality, salted potato chips are a favourite cocktail hour snack of mine, but you might also offer cheese puffs or Salted Truffle Popcorn


To make these Bloody Spritzes extra spooky for Halloween, I’m serving them in skull glasses.  My skull glasses were already in my collection, but I found these similar glasses that can be ordered on Amazon.Since these Bloody Spritzes are closely related to the Aperol Spritz, they also look stunning served in a traditional stemmed glass with a large bowl.

Prosecco is poured into a blood orange and black currant aperol spritz while it is prepared on a wood table
A blood orange and black currant Aperol spritz garnished with rosemary sits on a wood table

A blood orange and black currant Aperol spritz garnished with rosemary sits on a wood table

Blood Orange and Black Currant Aperol Spritz (aka The Bloody Spritz)

Style and Grace
Author: Sarah Gallienne
If you're searching for an elegant and delicious Halloween cocktail, the Blood Orange and Black Currant Aperol Spritz is it! Featuring freshly squeezed blood orange juice, bright Apérol and dark and moody Crème de Cassis, this sweet-tart twist on a classic Aperol Spritz is the perfect blood red addition to your Halloween celebration.
Prep Time 5 minutes
Total Time 5 minutes
Course Drinks
Cuisine Italian
Servings 1


  • 2 oz blood orange juice
  • 1 oz Crème de Cassis (or non-alcoholic black currant syrup, such as Ribena)
  • 1 oz Aperol
  • 3 oz Prosecco
  • 1 oz sparkling water


  • 1 slice blood orange
  • 1 sprig fresh rosemary


  • Fill a large glass with ice.
  • Add the blood orange juice, Crème de Cassis (or Ribena) and Aperol. Top with the Prosecco and sparkling water.
  • Stir gently, garnish and enjoy!
Keyword Aperol, Cocktails


  • If you can’t find blood oranges, you can use regular, freshly squeezed orange juice.  The red colour won’t be as vibrant but the taste will be equally delicious.
  • Entertaining Tip:  These cocktails are best served as soon as they are made, before the ice melts and the Prosecco losses its fizz, so this is not a drink to mix up in advance.  With its short list of ingredients and easy prep, this cocktail is best made once your guests arrive.  If  you are planning on serving these to a crowd, squeeze the blood orange juice and prepare your garnishes in advance, and store them separately, in covered containers in the fridge until it’s time to mix the drinks.     
  • Someone recently asked me if Campari could be substituted for Aperol in this Blood Orange and Black Currant Aperol Spritz, or in a regular Aperol Spritz for that matter.  I’m a big fan of Campari and usually have a bottle on hand, so I gave it a try and here is my simple review:  I don’t think it works.  Campari is much stronger in flavour and significantly more bitter.  It’s also way higher in alcohol, which defeats the purpose of a spritz, which is a deliberately light cocktail.  While I like the taste of Campari, I found it overpowers every other flavour in a classic Aperol Spritz, and in this Blood Orange and Black Currant Aperol Spritz.  I’d say you should stick with Aperol for these cocktails and save the Campari for Negronis, or Campari and Sodas.

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