What can I use instead of Lillet Blanc? The best substitutes for Lillet Blanc include Cocchi Americano, Kina L’Avion d’Or, Dry Vermouth, Sweet White Vermouth (with a splash of orange bitters, St Germain, Reserve Jean de Lillet, Amaro Angeleno, Swedish Punsch, and Dubonnet.
Lillet (pronounced lee-LAY) Blanc is a French aperitif wine infused with exotic fruits, herbs, and botanicals. It is prized by many bartenders for its refreshing crisp flavors with orange, honey, and floral notes. Lillet Blanc makes a perfect addition to cocktails, G&Ts, and spritzers. You will need a decent replacement if you can’t find a bottle of the golden madame. Here are our favorite picks.
The Best Lillet Blanc Substitutes
Cocchi Americano is an Italian aperitif wine that makes a wonderful substitute for Lillet Blanc. It is made from fortified white wine macerated with botanicals.
Cocchi shares similar complex flavors with Lillet Blanc, including bitter orange peel, gentian, and cinchona.
Cocchi Americano is a darling amongst the cocktail community, boasting a balance of sweet, bitter, and herbal notes. However, it is also enjoyed on its own or with a splash of soda.
Substitute Lillet Blanc with an equal or slightly lesser amount of Cocchi Americana to mask the more prominent quinine flavors.
Kina L’Avion D’ Or
Like Lillet Blanc, Kina L’Avion d’Or is an aperitif wine praised for its bittersweet and slightly acidic flavors and a leading floral essence. However, Kina L’Avion d’Or has a more bitter taste than Lillet Blanc.
Kina L’Avion d’Or is a pleasant aperitif sipped on its own. However, it’s also a delicious addition to cocktails, G&Ts, and club soda with fresh herbs.
Substitute Lillet Blanc with an equal amount of Kina L’Avion d’Or in cocktails.
Dry Vermouth is an aromatized, fortified wine flavored with herbs, spices, and botanicals. Dry Vermouth is characterized as dry because it has little to no sugar and is high in alcohol, and is low in water content.
Dry Vermouth is an essential ingredient in various cocktails, especially Martinis. Dry Vermouth also tastes great when served on ice or with a splash of soda and citrus.
Substitute Lillet Blanc with an equal amount of Dry Vermouth in cocktails.
Sweet White Vermouth (& Orange Bitters)
Sweet White Vermouth is a fortified Italian aperitif wine aromatized with botanicals, including flowers, sweet orange, grapefruit, quinine, and licorice.
Its floral, bittersweet flavors make it an ideal replacement for Lillet Blanc.
Sweet White Vermouth is delicious when sipped on the rocks, mixed with club soda, or added to a G&T or cocktail.
When substituting Lillet Blanc, use smaller amounts of Sweet White Vermouth, especially in cocktail recipes, to compensate for the sweeter flavor.
Add a few drops orange bitters to achieve a closer taste to Lillet Blanc.
St Germain is a sweeter – more expensive – substitute for Lillet Blanc.
It is perfect for someone who doesn’t like the bitter notes of Lillet Blanc. St Germain is a French liqueur made with extracted elderflowers to create an aromatic, sweet tropical, and floral-tasting beverage.
St Germain can be sipped as an aperitif. However, bartenders mostly use it as a fun, tropical cocktail addition.
St Germain is much sweeter resemblant of Lillet Blanc. So, use a lesser quantity when replacing Lillet Blanc in cocktails.
Reserve Jean de Lillet
Reserve Jean de Lillet is a 2009 aromatized aperitif wine made from single-vintage Sauternes – a fine blend of Semillon (80%), Sauvignon Blanc (15%), and Muscadelle (5%) – mixed with a Spanish sweet orange peels and Haiti bitter orange-flavored liqueur.
Although more of a collection item, Reserve Jean de Lillet is a perfect replacement for Lillet Blanc.
You can drink Reserve Jean de Lillet unadorned, but it is irresistible in cocktails too.
If you are lucky enough to find Reserve Jean de Lillet, you can use equal amounts when replacing Lillet Blanc.
Uniquely Californian and distinctively Italian, Amaro Angeleno is a Californian bitter liqueur made in the vein of the classic Italian Aperol.
It is infused with Valencia oranges, gentian herbs, and bitter floral roots. The bittersweet, orange, and floral flavors make it another ideal replacement for Lillet Blanc.
Amaro Angeleno is the perfect upgrade to a Spritz, Aperol Sour, Margarita, and Negroni. You can also drink it neat as a digestif after a meal.
You can use equal amounts when substituting Lillet Blac with Amaro Angeleno. However, Amaro Angeleno is more bitter than Lillet Blanc and leaves a strong bitter aftertaste.
Swedish Punsch is a popular liqueur in Sweden and Finland that combines spirits like arrack or brandy with a blend of tea, water, and sugar.
Swedish Punsch flavors vary from brand to brand, but their complex sweet and spicy notes make a delicious replacement for Lillet Blanc.
Besides being drunk neat, Swedish Punsch is a popular addition to cocktails like the Diki-Diki, Doctor, or Guldkant.
Substitute Lillet Blanc with an equal or slightly lesser amount of Swedish Pusch to tone down the spicy notes.
Dubonnet is a French aperitif wine created in 1846 to help make bitter quinine more palatable to French soldiers with malaria.
Dubonnet’s spicy and fruity taste makes it a delicious replacement for Lillet Blanc.
Dubonnet can be used in cocktails. However, it is more commonly sipped on its own, on the rocks, or as a spritzer with some club soda. You can add it to cocktails.
Substitute Lillet Blanc with an equal amount of Dubonnet in cocktails.