3/4 ounce Gin (I prefer Plymouth or Bluecoat)
3/4 ounce Campari
3/4 ounce Sweet Vermouth
Combine all liquid ingredients into a shaker and stir for about ten seconds, strain into a coupe or martini glass, or serve over ice in a highball glass. Garnish with an orange peel.
When making a twist, you want a wide strip of peel, with as little pith as possible. While an orange ribbon is shown in the image, that is not the preferable shape when functionality is the focus. Using a standard peeler, apply light pressure to your orange and scrape down the side, attempt to get a twist about an inch in length and roughly half an inch in width.
A classic cocktail, time-tested over the last century, the Negroni is equal parts Gin, Campari, and Sweet Vermouth, garnished with an orange peel. The emphasis of the Negroni is on balance. The ingredients work together in harmony to create a truly wonderful cocktail.
It is difficult to say with any certainty, but most signs point to 1919 Florence, Italy as the origin of the Negroni cocktail. It’s creation was, as with most cocktails, spurred on by a customer’s desire for a little oomph (sp?) and variation to their evening’s libations. The man responsible, Count Camillo Negroni, was known far and wide for his love of the Americano cocktail. Spending night after night crushing Americanos, the Count grew weary of them and yearned for a little spice in his life. Thus the swap out of tonic water and in came gin, and a true party lifestyle was born. Who needs non-alcoholic mixers anyway?
That’s enough of a history lesson I think, so let’s get down to business.
We’re going to try something new over here at Libation Nation, instead of me reviewing the cocktail and showcasing a recipe, I’m going to post the thoughts from a few of my very talented bartender friends and then list a couple Negroni variations at the end of the piece, as well as some thoughts on vermouth and Campari. But, without further pop and no more circumstance, here are the bartenders. First up is Stephen Ogburn, formerly of Amuse, now working at the newly revamped Bistro 27 Bar.
“The Negroni is a beautiful picture of the perfect harmony and curious complexity of spirits in three equal parts. Some do not find the bitter sweetness of Campari to their liking, they also complain of too much vermouth in cocktails, but give me a Negroni with a burnt orange peel and I will shortly be asking for another.”
If you’d like to try Stephen’s burnt orange peel Negroni, stop by Bistro 27 on Fridays and Saturdays – I hear he makes an excellent variation using barrel-aged rum as the base spirit and a dash of Cardamaro for a nice buttery finish.
That’s all for now, I’ll continue to update the page over the weekend with more thoughts from your local bar staff, and the vermouth and Campari subsections will appear early next week.
Thanks for reading.