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TIP OF THE DAY: Bellini Cocktail For Summer

Is the Bellini the perfect summer drink? It’s made with sparkling Prosecco, a lighter alternative (and more lightly priced) than Champagne, and a purée of ripe summer peaches.

While you can purchase peach purée (The Perfect Purée makes a great one), with peaches plentiful and affordable, it’s cost effective to make your own.

We picked up a flat of a dozen peaches from Trader Joe’s for $5.99. We had planned to snack on them, but the more they ripened, the more we had other eating priorities.

The next thing we knew, we had a dozen very ripe peaches. When life gives you peaches, make peach purée. We peeled them and tossed them in the food processor.

We snacked on the tasty peelings, full of the antioxidants vitamins A, C, E and K and chlorogenic acid. (Peaches are also a rich source of calcium, fiber, folate acid and potassium.)



Celebrate summer with Bellini cocktails. Photo courtesy Chocolate Lab | San Francisco.



While many people use Champagne to make a Bellini, the original recipe, created in 1948 by Giuseppe Cipriani, head bartender at Harry’s Bar in Venice, is made with Prosecco. The dry, sparkling Italian wine is lighter than Champagne and doesn’t contribute Champagne’s chalk and mineral flavors to the drink. (Some people confuse the Bellini with the Mimosa, a cocktail made of Champagne and orange juice.)

The peachy color of the cocktail reminded Cipriani of the color of the robe of St. Francis in the 15th-century painting by Venetian artist Giovanni Bellini. Cipriani named the drink in Bellini’s honor.

It is said that the original Bellini was made with white peach purée. White peaches were plentiful in the area and were often marinated in wine as a dessert.

If you can’t find white peaches, don’t worry. When mixed with the Prosecco, the flavor difference between white and yellow peaches is indistinguishable. And yellow peaches provide more of the color for which the drink was named. Feel free to use whichever are more affordable.


A detail from “St. Francis In Ecstasy” by
Giovanni Bellini. The painting is owned
by the Frick Museum in New York City.



Ingredients Per Cocktail

  • 2 ounces white peach purée
  • Chilled Prosecco
  • Fresh lemon


    1. POUR purée into a Champagne flute.

    2. ADD a squeeze of fresh lemon.

    3. TOP with chilled Prosecco. You don’t need to stir, but if you do, do it just once and very gently so that you don’t break the bubbles.




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