According to legend, the first Bellini was poured in the summer of 1948 by Giuseppe Cipriani, founder and barman of the legendary Harry’s Bar in Venice. Located just off the Grand Canal, the iconic bar was frequented by the likes of Humphrey Bogart, Truman Capote, and Ernest Hemingway.
Cipriani’s recipe calls to gently stir two parts Prosecco and one part fresh peach pureé, served in a chilled flute. Legend has it that the drink’s characteristic sunset shade reminded the bartender of the strikingly chromatic paintings by 15th-century Venetian artist Giovani Bellini, hence the name.
8 ripe white peaches (or raspberries for a fabulous twist)
1/2 cup fresh lemon juice
Simple syrup (2 cups sugar to 1 cup hot water, stir to dissolve)
(Optional) a couple of frozen raspberries (for colour)
(Optional) a spoonful of orange blossom water
Wash and quarter peaches, keeping the skin on. In a blender, purée all ingredients together for a couple of minutes, until consistent and without lumps. Strain through a sieve. The puree can be frozen at this point or covered and refrigerated for up to a week.
Pour into cold champagne flute, add prosecco.
Place 2 tablespoons of the peach puree into each Champagne glass and fill with cold prosecco. Serve immediately.