Negroni Week is here, and if you’re unfamiliar with the cocktail, then we’re here to help.
Negroni Week launched in 2013 as a celebration of one of the world’s great cocktails and an effort to raise money for charities around the world. From 2013 to 2017, Negroni Week grew from about 120 participating venues to over 7,700 venues around the world, and to date, they have collectively raised nearly $1.5 million for charitable causes.
According to lore, the cocktail was born in Florence in 1919 when an Italian bartender responded to a customer’s demand for a stiffer riff on an Americano cocktail. The customer, Count Camillo Negroni, had picked up a taste for strong liquor while working as a rodeo clown in the American Wild West, and enjoyed the product so much that gave his name to the resulting concoction.
This week, Negroni Week runs from June 4-10, and while there are a number of participating bars in your area, you can also celebrate at home with these six classic Negroni cocktails.
This is the classic cocktail in its purest form. While the Negroni is a simple combination of 1:1:1 the blend of alcohol makes a delicious, and bitter, cocktail.
- 1 oz Gin
- 1 oz Campari
- 1 oz Amaro/Sweet Vermouth
Method: Combine all ingredients into an old fashioned glass, add an oversized ice cube and stir.
Growing in popularity, the White Negroni produces an entirely new flavour profile while still maintaining the spirit of the of the original cocktail.
- 1.5 oz London Dry Gin
- 1.5 oz Lillet Blanc
- 0.5 oz Suze liqueur
- Lemon twist
Method: Combine gin, Lillet, and Suze in an old-fashioned glass filled with ice and stir until very cold, about 30 seconds. Garnish with a lemon twist.
This is the original cocktail that Count Negroni wanted spiced up. It’s a softer drink, and the club soda makes it a good option for warmer weather.
- 1.5 oz Campari
- 1.5 oz sweet vermouth
- 3 oz soda water/ club soda
Method: Pour campari and vermouth into a highball glass filled with ice. Top with soda water/club soda and stir. Garnish with a twist of lemon
Swapping out gin for bourbon or whiskey brings in an entirely different complexity to the cocktail.
- 1.5 oz bourbon or rye whiskey
- 0.75 oz dry vermouth
- 0.75 oz Campari
Method: Fill a mixing glass 2/3 full with ice. Add whiskey, dry vermouth, and Campari. Stir until well chilled, about 20 seconds, and strain into chilled cocktail glass. Twist a piece of lemon peel over the drink and use as garnish.
This is particularly popular for those looking for a Negroni taste but far less bitter than the original provides. It’s a great celebratory drink.
- 1 oz. sweet vermouth
- 1 oz. Campari
- 1 oz. lightly sparkling wine
Method: Combine vermouth and Campari in an ice-filled champagne glass. Top with sparkling wine, stir to combine and garnish with an orange peel
Similar to the Old Pal, the Boulevardier uses sweet vermouth rather than dry, so it retains that slightly sweet aftertaste from the original.
- 1 oz bourbon or rye whiskey
- 1 oz Campari
- 1 oz sweet vermouth
Method: Pour ingredients into a mixing glass and fill with cracked ice. Stir well for 20 seconds and strain into a chilled cocktail glass. Garnish with a cherry or a twist of orange peel.