YUM: 6 Ways to Savor a Negroni Cocktail
Want to soak up the final days of summer? Then you must savor the one drink that will help you enjoy la bella vita.
WATCH: How to Make a Crystal Clear Negroni
Usually, the sizzling season is associated with frozen libations, or any cocktail served in a massive tiki glass. And while those drinks are always welcome, something a little more classic and delicious is a must-have to keep the celebration going, especially when it transitions into the perfect autumn cocktail as well.
The Negroni is a light, thirst-quenching drink prepared with Camapri, the vibrant crimson apertif that originated in Italy's Novara in 1860 (and has remained unchanged ever since). The spirit, which is prepared by infusing alcohol and water with a medley of bitter herbs, aromatic plants and fruit, is an essential ingredient in the Negroni — but as you'll soon see, there's more than one way to mix up this classic cocktail.
So whether you’re curious to try Negroni or you just can’t quit those pina coladas, rest assured — there's a varation of this old-school favorite out there to suit your seasonal tastebuds.
RECIPES: 5 Classic Cocktails You Should Know How to Make
"Negroni is a great drink because it’s gin-based, which is absolutely perfect for summer," says Pam Wiznitzer, creative director at New York City's Seamstress and the NYC president of the United States Bartenders’ Guild (USBG). "It’s stirred, which is fabulous for those who can’t handle citrus, refreshing, bitter, and low-proof."
"You can top it with soda water to make it lighter, on the rocks, or straight up," adds Wiznitzer.
Bob Wagner, bartender at New York City's Holiday Cocktail Lounge, is also a huge fan of the drink.
"As we have seen, the Negroni has become a very popular cocktail the world over, and with good reason," he explains. "The crisp, floral notes of London dry gin and the earthy herbaceous notes of good, sweet vermouth stretch the spectrum of flavors in Campari, complementing the bitter-yet-fruity taste that makes a Negroni the chameleon of cocktails, imparting different flavors to match your mood or season."
"It can be a bright punch of citrus oils and blooming flowers over a freshly rained-on field to fit the perfect summer day, or one of those fancy orange-tinged chocolates your grandfather brings you at Christmas," he adds.
READ: 10 Cognac Cocktail Recipes to Make Now
In short? You’ve gotta make a batch of this stuff pronto. And don’t worry, we won’t tell anyone that you’re giving the usual frozen margarita a break.
We’ve had several bartenders share with us some of their most unique, tantalizing ways to drink, enjoy, and love a Negroni:
1 part Campari
1 part gin (Bulldog Gin was used in this recipe)
1 part vermouth (Cinzano Vermouth was used in this recipe)
1 orange twist
Add all ingredients (except orange twist) in a mixing glass with ice. Stir ingredients and strain into a chilled cocktail glass or an ice-filled double rocks glass. Garnish with an orange twist.
(Courtesy of Campari)
1 part Campari
1 part Strawberry-infused white vermouth (Mixologist used Cinzano Bianco)*
1 part mezcal
1 sprig rosemary
First, begin infusing white vermouth with strawberries. Wash and slice ripe strawberries and place in a clean jar. Pour white vermouth and cover tightly with lid. Shake a few times for a week. It is advised to do a taste test on a regular basis until you achieve the infusion you want. The more strawberries used, the more powerful the infusion flavor. When making the cocktail, mix campari, infused vermouth, and mezcal in a mixing glass and stir. Serve over ice in a rocks glass and garnish with rosemary.
(Pamela Wiznitzer, Creative Director, Seamstress + USBG NYC President)
¾ oz. Campari
¾ oz. cacao-infused gin (Mixologist used Bulldog Gin)*
¾ oz. coffee-infused sweet vermouth (Mixologist used Cinzano 1757)*
White chocolate prosecco foam*
Dark chocolate cocoa powder
First, begin infusing gin and sweet vermouth. In separate clean jars, pour gin over the cacao nibs and vermouth over the coffee beans. Cover tightly with lids. Shake a few times for a week. It is advised to do a taste test on a regular basis until you achieve the infusion you want. When ready to mix the cocktail, combine Campari, gin, and sweet vermouth in a cocktail shaker filled with ice. Shake vigorously. Serve in a chilled glass and garnish with foam and cacao powder.
*To make white chocolate prosecco foam, combine 5 oz. egg whites, 5 oz. prosecco and 5 oz. white créme de cacao in an ISI 0.5L whip canister. Charge with one NO2 cartridge and shake for a few seconds.
(Bob Wagner, Holiday Cocktail Lounge in New York City)
¾ oz. Campari
1 ½ oz. Scotch (Mixologist used Glen Grant 10 Year Scotch)
1 oz. extra dry vermouth (Mixologist used Cinzano Extra Dry)
1 bar spoon lavender honey (any other high quality honey works too)
1 dash lavender bitters
1 dash saline solution (one part salt to ten parts water)
1 baby's breath flower
Combine ingredients in a mixing glass. Stir for 10-15 seconds. Strain over a coup glass and garnish with baby's breath.
(Naren Young, Dante in New York City)
1 oz. Campari
1 oz. sweet vermouth (Mixologist used Cinzano 1757)
1 ½ oz. rye whiskey (mixologist used Wild Turkey Rye)
1¼ oz. water
1 orange twist
In a cocktail shaker filled with ice, combine whiskey with Campari and vermouth. Cover and stir until chilled, then pour into a chilled shot glass or any other miniature glass. Garnish with an orange twist.
(Tristan Willey, Long Island Bar in Brooklyn, NY)
¾ oz. Campari
¾ oz. gin (Mixologist used Bulldog Gin)
1 oz. Cocchi Rosa (a sweet aperitif wine)
3–4 oz. vanilla flavored soda
1 scoop vanilla ice cream
Build the cocktail by adding Campari, gin, aperitif wine and soda in a chilled glass. Top with scoop of vanilla ice cream.
(Pamela Wiznitzer, Seamstress in New York City)