Summer is the time of year we all let loose—we whisk away to luxurious places, we go out and party—basically, we indulge in life’s little pleasures a little more often than usual. This year we decided not to make any big plans to get away. We didn’t want to miss out on summer in Montreal. Instead, we take off every weekend and spend some serious family time on our mini vacations up north. We invite friends, and family, we socialize, we relax, and most importantly, we enjoy the quiet moments.
Whenever I have friends join us for the weekend, I usually prepare a whole spread. I love to plan how the food will play out, because those are the moments when we all gather around the table, chat, laugh, share stories, and what not. I usually pair most of my meal choices with wine, I’m a white wine lover, and in the summer, I find a way to make everything match with either white or rosé! But, this summer, there’s a new staple on my table. I was introduced to Bella Amari at the re-opening of Beatrice a few months back, and I’ve kind of been (mildly) obsessed ever since!
If I’m hanging poolside with friends, hosting an evening in, or enjoying an early evening cocktail on the dock by the lake, I have kind of been grabbing for the Bella Amari more than anything else. I love the lemonade flavour—a lightly sparkling lemon-infused bittersweet spritz, um, yes please!
As my go-to summer drink, I try to mix it up. I love the blood orange flavour and sometimes I combine it with other cocktails just to keep things fun. For example, I can throw in a splash of Bella Amari to a Negroni since the recipe calls for a twist of orange. If I’m making Aperol spritz, I can use the lemon flavour. I usually drink it straight, but when I play cottage barista, I always impress my patrons, lol!
There is something so authentic about the taste – it really feels like I’m drinking Lake Como in a glass. So it’s kind of like a mini getaway every time I take a sip… I close my eyes and I dream of Italy! I’m getting quite used to having Bella Amari on my roster of drinks, and seeing that it is exclusively available in Quebec, I feel we have a certain cache that no one else has access to. So if you haven’t made your vacation plans for the summer yet, there’s another reason to write Montreal on your top ten list! Just kidding, kind of!
This might sound a little strange to some, but for those who know the feeling, here goes: this summer has been all about making memories. A lot of those memories have been made around the table, eating, drinking, and having fun with friends. I know that maybe in a few months from now or even in a year or whatever, I’ll take a sip of a Bella Amari drink, and I will just be flown right back to this summer. I’ll taste my memories – conjured up by the light and delightful spritzer that was summer 2019. You know what I mean? Funny how that happens.
Photography by Patricia Brochu