I absolutely love Lillet Blanc. It's light, citrusy and so perfect for summer. But what happens if you don't have Lillet Blanc or you run out? Luckily there's a Lillet Blanc substitute, or a few, out there for you to use!
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What is Lillet Blanc
Lillet Blanc is a French fortified wine made from wine, fruits, and botanicals. You can find it in most liquor stores and it's a delicious addition to some classic cocktails. I love making a classic Lillet Spritz with it.
What Does Lillet Blanc Taste Like
Lillet Blanc has a similar flavor profile to a pinot grigio or sauvignon blanc. It has a slightly fruity flavor and is incredibly crisp and refreshing.
Best Lillet Blanc Substitutes
If you're looking for the best substitutes for Lillet Blanc, I have you covered! Here's a list of 10 tasty alternatives.
St. Germain is a French liqueur made with elderflowers and it is arguably the best Lillet Blanc alternative. Elderflowers are picked from the French Alps and are macerated and blended with sugars and distilled to get this delicious floral flavor, aromatic and sweet liqueur. It's sweeter than Lillet Blanc and isn't as bitter as other aperitifs like Aperol or Campari. When substituting St. Germain for Lillet Blanc in recipes, I recommend using slightly less St Germain than you would Lillet Blanc.
Sweet White Vermouth
Now there is a wide array of vermouth options, but if you're looking for similar flavors to Lillet Blanc, you'll want to opt for for sweet white vermouth. It's definitely sweeter than Lillet Blanc and could have notes of chamomile, coriander, gentian root, juniper, saffron, sage, and wormwood. If you're using sweet vermouth as an alternative to Lillet Blanc, I recommend using less than the typical amount of Lillet you'd use.
Cocchi Americano is also a great substitute. It's a quinine-flavored aperitif wine. Unlike St. Germain and Lillet, this hails from Italy. It's a Moscato wine-based wine aperitif macerated with cinchona bark, rhubarb, bitter orange peel, juniper, coriander, and rose. It's more bitter than Lillet Blanc itself, but still, a great option if you're looking for a white wine liqueur. You can use this to make a white negroni and it's used in a corpse reviver #2 classic cocktail.
Dry sherry is also a good option to swap out in a cocktail recipe. It is made by having the grapes fully complete fermentation so there is very little residual sugars. It has notes of nuts and citrus peel which makes it a good substitute for Lillet or it's even delicious to cook with.
Reserve Jean De Lillet
Think of this as a limited edition Lillet Blanc release. It's a French aperitif wine that has a more bitter flavor than traditional Lillet Blanc. It's aged with orange peel in French oak barrels. If you can get your hands on this, you may like the bittersweet flavor compared to traditional Lillet Blanc.
Kina L’Avion D’ Or
This is another French aperitif wine dating all the way back to the late 19th century. It's made with a blend of French wine infused with cinchona bark, orange peel, wormwood, and other spices. It's more comparable to Kina Lillet, which is the original recipe for Lillet Blanc. However, it's still an excellent substitute for modern-day Lillet. It has a more bitter taste than Lillet Blanc but is still an enjoyable substitute.
Angostura Orange Bitters
This isn't an orange liqueur, but if you want that citrus taste with a bitter finish, you can always add a dash or two of Angostura Bitters with a dash of lemon juice. That'll give that citrus flavor with a bitter finish, and if you love old fashioned cocktails, you'll absolutely have this on your home bar.
If you're looking for something made in the United States, Amaro Angeleno is a bitter orange apertivo made in Los Angeles, California. It's made of pinot grigio, herbal infusions, and unaged brandy. It may be more comparable to Aperol, but nonetheless, still could be a great Lillet Blanc substitute.
This is a classic French aperitif dating all the way back to 1885. It does have higher alcohol content than Lillet Blanc, so typically it's enjoyed over ice with a twist of lemon peel. But it could absolutely be used as a substitute for Lillet Blanc.
Drinks you can make using Lillet Blanc
I love making this Lillet Spritz, it's such a perfect summer cocktail it's a crisp and incredibly refreshing cocktail. You can also make a James Bond Vesper martini (a Lillet Blanc-based vesper), white sangria, or casino royale.
All about Lillet Blanc
Let's learn more about Lillet Blanc and the Lillet brand as a whole.
Is Lillet Blanc A Dry Vermouth?
Nope! Lillet and Vermouth are both fortified wines, but since Lillet isn't made with wormwood and contains liqueur, it can't be classified as vermouth and vice versa.
Is Lillet Blanc still made?
Yes, Lillet Blanc is still made but Kina Lillet is the original Lillet liqueur that hasn't been made since 1986.
Is Lillet wine or liquor?
Lillet is a French aromatized wine.
How many varieties of Lillet are there?
There are three: Lillet Rouge (Red), Lillet Blanc (White), and Lillet Rosé (Lillet Rose.)
Amazon home bar finds
I love these wine glasses if you're looking to make a spritz with any one of these liqueurs.
If you're making classic drinks, like a Vesper martini, these martini glasses are so chic.