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French term (also aperitif) for alcoholic drinks that are drunk before a meal to whet the appetite. However, the distinction between drinks known as digestifs (after a meal to aid digestion) is blurred. Such drinks, usually flavoured with spices, were already popular in ancient times. They were called "aperitivum" by the Romans after the Latin "aperire" (to open = "to open the stomach"). Mulsum honey wine was particularly popular. In France and Italy in particular, the aperitif is an integral part of a good meal. It is served to arriving guests as a "welcome drink" to shorten the waiting time until the food is served and everyone has arrived. Aperitivo in Italy and apéro in Switzerland refers not only to the drink itself, but also to the traditional habit of meeting friends for drinks in bars and pubs in the evening, accompanied by small snacks.

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Egon Mark

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Egon Mark
Diplom-Sommelier, Weinakademiker und Weinberater, Volders (Österreich)

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