The French Don’t Snack. They Apéro.

Barring the afternoon snack of school children, it’s true: Snacking between meals isn’t really a thing in France. Unless, of course, you swap in the word snack for “apéro.” Pausing for a drink and small bite during apéritif hour is sacred across France — and easily translates to your own backyard.

Recipe: Pink Peppercorn-Marinated Goat Cheese

The word apéritif, derived from the Latin “aperire” or “to open,” refers both to a set of low alcohol-by-volume bottles (such as vermouth, sherry or Suze) as well as drinks. Meant to whet the appetite and always paired with a small, savory bite, l’apéro often takes place during the transition from day to evening, though a lunchtime apéro isn’t unheard-of.

The apéritifs should lean dry, modest in alcohol and simple: a glass of still or sparkling wine, a beer or a simple mixed drink, such as a classic Kir, Vermouth spritz or Picon Bière.

Recipe: All Day Cassis

Dry vermouth, lemon juice and crème de cassis topped with tonic water and rosé make for an easy-drinking cocktail.Credit…Linda Xiao for The New York Times. Food Stylist: Rebecca Jurkevich.
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