Best Lillet Blanc Substitutes

While any bartender or wine dealer can spout off a long list of Lillet blanc substitute, we have reduced the list to the five choices: sweet white vermouth, St. Germaine, Amaro Angeleno, Cocchi Americano, and Kina LAvion dOr. You can find these five alternatives at liquor stores or order them from online vendors for more convenience.

What Is Lillet Blanc Made Of?

Lillet Blanc (sometimes referred to as Lillet blonde) is a French wine and citrus liqueur blend with a colorful past. Named for its founding family, Lillet Blanc is a newer version of the original formula, Lillet Kina, which the two Lillet brothers invented in 1872 in the world-famous Bordeaux wine region of France.

Paul and Raymond Lillet combined a white Bordeaux wine with orange peel liqueur and quinine liqueur, aging the blend in oak vats to market as Lillet Kina.

You can buy Lillet Blanc in wine and liquor stores or order the aperitif at a restaurant with appetizers as was its original purpose. If you cannot find Lillet Blanc at your local store or forget to pick up a bottle, the five Lillet blonde alternatives we list below make excellent replacements.

We chose the five beverages on our list per what we believe to be the most important criteria: taste, cocktail recipe, and availability.

While some of the substitutes on our list are better alternatives to use in a cocktail, other subs are themselves aperitifs that you can serve without other mix-ins over ice.

1. St Germain

St. Germaine, similar to Lillet Blanc, originates in France. It is a liqueur extracted from elderflowers indigenous to the French Alps. The flowers are macerated and mixed with sugars and distilled to create a highly aromatic, floral liqueur that makes a great Lillet Blanc alternative.

You can drink St. Germaine as an aperitif, but it is more commonly featured in cocktails. St. Germaine is considerably sweeter than Lillet Blanc, which you may prefer if you arent a fan of the more bitter aspects of aperitifs.

Also, because St. Germaine is derived from a flower, the flavoring is less fruity and more floral. Still, St. Germaines sweet and floral combination can emulate sweeter fruits such as pears or lychee as opposed to the more acidic citrus bitters characteristic of Lillet Blanc.

Due to its sweeter nature, you could use a smaller proportion of St. Germaine to replace Lillet Blanc in a cocktail recipe or increase a more bitter ingredient to balance out the sweetness.

St. Germaine is a common liqueur that youll see at most cocktail bars or high-end restaurant bars. You can also purchase St. Germaine at a liquor store or order it online. However, take note that It is considerably more expensive than Lillet Blanc.

2. Cocchi Americano

Cocchi Americano is an Italian aperitif made from a blend of the sweet Italian Moscato wine, quinine liqueur, orange peel, gentian root, and additional spices.

It is an excellent substitute for Lillet Blanc because it shares many of the same ingredients, and consequently, the same aromatic flavor profile. That said, Cocchi Americano is much more bitter than Lillet Blanc, so when using it in cocktails, you can increase the proportion of sweet additives like fruit juices or simple syrup.

It is firstly an aperitif, so you can serve it over ice but just be prepared for a more powerful blast of bitters. You might want to sip it while nibbling on light appetizers to lessen the blow if you arent the biggest bitters fan.

You can buy Cocchi Americano in wine and liquor stores or online. The good news is it is comparable in price or cheaper than a bottle of Lillet Blanc.

3. Kina L’Avion d’Or

Kina LAvion dOr, French for the golden airplane bitter, is a French aperitif that more aptly resembles the Lillet familys original Lillet Kina as it contains a hefty portion of quinine liqueur.

Also, like Lillet Kina and Lillet Blanc, Kina LAvion dOr consists of white wine from a different French region along with orange peel and wormwood.

With marmalade and quince fruity tones and a nice sweetness, Kina LAvion dOr is only slightly more bitter than Lillet Blanc. We, therefore, consider it the best Lillet Blanc alternative in terms of taste.

You can enjoy it as an aperitif, and it tastes just as delicious as Lillet Blanc in popular Lillet Blanc cocktails like the Corpse Reviver 2.

The company that makes Kina LAvion dOr is called Tempus Fugit, and you can find this more exotic aperitif in high-end liquor stores or bars. It is also available for purchase online. It is less frequently accessible and twice as pricey as Lillet Blanc.

4. Sweet White Vermouth

Sweet white vermouth is the most common and widely available Lillet Blanc alternative on our list. There are numerous types of white vermouth, some originating in France and others in Italy.

Vermouth is another aromatized wine that distinguishes itself from Lillet Blanc due to its high sugar content and unaged alcohol additive. Youll see a range of vermouth offerings that range from dry to sweet.

To best emulate Lillet Blancs bitter-sweetness, we recommend Mancino Bianco Ambrato Vermouth because it lies right in the middle of the dry to sweet scale and contains citrus liqueurs such as grapefruit and orange. It also has floral liqueurs, quinine, and licorice.

Sweet vermouth is much sweeter than Lillet Blanc and tastes great as a sipping wine, but if you want to use it as a Lillet Blanc replacement in cocktails, we recommend using a small portion and adding a splash of orange bitters.

Can’t seem to locate vermouth? Vermouth alternatives may be found here.

5. Amaro Angeleno

As apparent in its name, Amaro Angeleno is a Los Angeles, CA aromatized wine made from a blend of Californian Pinot Grigio, unaged brandy, and herbal and citrus infusions.

Amaro is an Italian digestive beverage, that is a wine to be enjoyed after a meal to aid in digestion. You can still enjoy it as an aperitif, and its flavor profile of orange and verbena resembles Lillet Blanc in bitterness and fruity undertones.

Even though its from the U.S, Amaro Angeleno isnt produced on as massive a scale as many of the other wines or spirits on our list and is thus more expensive and not as readily available in bars and liquor stores.

Frequently Asked Questions

What does Lillet Blanc taste like?

Lillet Blanc tastes bitter and sweet as the blend of dry, white wine combines with orange-peel and green-orange peel bitters along with the classic quinine additive for extra bitterness. Still, in comparison with the original Lillet Kina, Lillet Blanc is considerably sweeter and fruitier.

Is Lillet Blanc a cooking wine?

No. Lillet Blanc is a very dry and bitter blend of wines and liquors not meant for use in cooking, but instead to accompany starters like olives or cheese and crackers or to enjoy sans food to spark your appetite in preparation for a meal.

What types of alcohol are in Lillet Blanc?

Lillet Blancs main ingredient is a French dry and sweet white wine known as Semillon blended with citrus liqueurs in a ratio of 85:15. There is also a splash of quinine for added bitterness, although to a much lesser degree than the original Lillet aperitif.

What are the most popular cocktails that feature Lillet Blanc?

The most popular cocktails that feature Lillet Blanc as a star ingredient are:

1. Lillet Blanc Vive- Lillet Blanc, tonic water, garnish of cucumber, mint, and strawberry slice2. A Corpse Reviver No. 2- Lillet Blanc, gin, Cointreau, absinthe, lemon juiceVesper- Lillet Blanc, gin, vodka, and lemon peel4. Rising Star-Lillet Blanc, vodka, grapefruit juice5. Sunday in the Park- Lillet Blanc, Angostura bitters, bourbon, lemon juice, simple syrup

What does aperitif mean?

Aperitif refers to an alcoholic beverage that you drink before a meal or with appetizers to help invigorate an appetite and open the palate for the main course.

How many varieties of Lillet are there?

There are five varieties: Kina Lillet, Lillet Dry, Lillet Rouge, Lillet Blanc, and Lillet Rose. Kina Lillet is no longer available as the Lillet company discontinued it in the 80s.


What can I use instead of Lillet Blanc in Martini Bianco?

If you have run out of Lillet Blanc or you cant find it at the store you can use some other substitutes like Amaro Angeleno, Swedish Punsch, Kina L’avion d’Or, Reserve Jean De Lillet, Sweet white vermouth, Cocchi Americano, St Germain, Salers Aperitif, Angostura Orange Bitters and Amaro Averna.

What can I use instead of Lillet in Vesper?

The best substitute for the Kina Lillet is Cocchi Americano, an Italian aperitif made with a base of Moscato wine macerated with herbs, spices, gentian root and cinchona bark. It has a herbal complexity with a soft sweetness and a bitter bite.

Can you make a Vesper without Lillet?

Cocchi Americano can be used as a substitute because has a more bitter finish than if you use Lillet Blanc. For a more traditional flavor, 100 proof vodka should be used to bring the alcohol content of the cocktail back to 1953 levels.

Can you substitute Lillet Blanc for dry vermouth?

Another excellent option for dry vermouth? Lillet Blanc is a white liqueur. Lillet (pronounced “Li-lay”) is a French aperitif: a fortified wine that’s flavored with herbs and citrus. There are are several types of Lillet made of different wines: Lillet Blanc, Lillet Rosé and Lillet Rouge.

Is Lillet Blanc a sweet vermouth?

Lillet Blanc is crisp and light, with subtle floral, herbal and citrus notes. It tastes like a semi-sweet white vermouth with intriguing herbal notes on the finish.

Is Lillet similar to Aperol?

Lillet. Lillet is French, not Italian, and the fortified, flavored wine doesn’t reach the bitter or sweet heights of Aperol. That said, Lillet Blanc, Rosé, and Rouge each provide a delicious, versatile spritz.

What is the difference between vermouth and Lillet Blanc?

But while both Lillet and vermouth are based in wine and are fortified up to 19 percent alcohol, as Lillet’s North American Brand Ambassador Nicole Cloutier explains, Lillet isn’t a vermouth for two reasons: It contains liqueur, and doesn’t contain wormwood.

What wine is similar to Lillet?

$10) Compared to the original recipe, modern day Lillet Blanc is less bitter, sweeter and more syrupy. …
Amaro Angeleno $33. …
Cocchi Americano ($18) …
Reserve Jean De Lillet ($40) …
Kina L’Avion d’Or ($33) …
Salers Aperitif ($20)
Jan 4, 2017Here, five of our favorite substitutions for Kina Lillet.
Lillet Blanc and Angostura Bitters ($20

How do French people drink Lillet?

The French often drink Lillet by itself, chilled neat or on the rocks, just as many Italians would enjoy a vermouth. But straight-up, Lillet is more delicate than a white vermouth, tasting much more like a wine. You can see why many French enjoy a small glass of Lillet, with 17 percent alcohol, after work.

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