Negroni: classic aperitif cocktail resurges in popularity


With just three ingredients, a Negroni is a classic aperitif cocktail that people are rediscovering. Blending gin, Campari and vermouth, the classic cocktails is celebrated during Negroni Week.

A Negroni is a classic aperitif cocktail. Many books and articles credit the cocktail to Count Negroni. The story goes that the count asked his favorite bartender to change the Americano, another cocktail, to something stronger. The bartender replaced the soda with gin and the Negroni was born.

Considered an aperitif, Negronis are often drunk before or at the beginning of a meal. The primary flavor of the cocktail comes from the Campari. This Italian aperitif is somewhat bitter. Made from herbs and spices, the flavor is similar to burnt orange or orange bitters. The flavors help wake up the palate, making it a perfect before meal cocktail.

Negronis are popular again.

The Italian cocktail is seeing a resurgence in popularity. Consumers are embracing the classic cocktails. The bright red color and the old fashion glass have a stunning appearance. Negronis, and their variations, are popping up at bars and restaurants all over.

Since almost every food, beverage and reason has a celebratory day. The Negroni has a whole celebratory week. Negroni Week is sponsored by Imbide Magazine and Campari.

Held June 5-11, the celebration raises money for charity. Various venues mix up Negronis and Negroni variations and donate funds to various recommended charities provided by the sponsors. Since the event’s inception, Negroni Week has raised over $900,000 for charity.

To make a classic Negroni at home, you only need three ingredients, gin, Campari and vermouth. The ratio is one equal part of each ingredient. Mix all ingredients in a shaker, pour over ice and garnish with an orange peel.

A Negroni variation, Boulevardier cocktail

While I like Campari, gin is not my favorite spirit. But, I am a big fan of whiskey and bourbon. I will be celebrating Negroni Week with a Boulevardier cocktail.

Boulevardier cocktail, a Negroni variation, photo by Cristine Struble

A Boulevardier cocktail replaces the gin with bourbon. Basically, you combine 1 ½ ounces of bourbon, 1 ounce Campari and 1 ounce sweet vermouth. Stir all the ingredients and serve over ice in a high ball glass. This cocktail is a great option for bourbon fans.

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Negroni Week is the perfect time to try this classic aperitif cocktail. From the classic to a variation, the Negroni might become a favorite cocktail for your next evening out.