The Story Behind The Elderflower Spritz

Spritzes are just about the most flexible – and possibly the easiest – kind of cocktail recipe out there. They’re infinitely customizable, making them suitable to all kinds of palates: low to high ABV, less or more carbonation, sweet or bitter, and so on.

And while Aperol is the star of the spritz during warmer months, the potential of elderflower liqueur, with its delicate floral, herbal taste, is not to be overlooked. Gina Buck, beverage director of Concord Hill in Brooklyn, came to this flavor combination by way of Dry January.

“I was doing Dry January — actually, I’m still doing it,” she said, five days into February, “and I was turned on to elderflower tonic water. I thought, ‘Oh, this could be good for people who are alcohol-free in general.’” Those in the mood for a non-alcoholic refresher might take a page from Buck’s book and sip some of the bubbly herbal water with lime.

But when you’re looking for something stronger, St-Germain and vodka (Buck prefers Tito’s or Ketel One) can give a drink its kick. You could even nix the vodka entirely for a grown-up but still low-ABV refresher. It couldn’t be easier: Just pour your ingredients into a wine glass over ice, give it a little stir, and top with thinly sliced lime wheels.


  • 2 ounces vodka
  • 1 ounce elderflower liqueur (preferably St-Germain)
  • Juice of 1/4 lime
  • Seltzer
  • Lime wheels for garnish


  1. Pour ice into a wine glass. Add vodka (Tito’s or Ketel One suggested), elderflower liqueur, and lime juice. Top off with seltzer.
  2. Stir a few times to combine.
  3. Garnish with lime wheels, sliced about ¼” - ⅛” thick.

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Updated: 2021-02-11

The Elderflower Spritz