There are few drinks as classic as the Negroni and with Negroni week coming up this month (4th to the 10th of June) we thought it’s high time to share the simple secret behind this bittersweet symphomy.
The Negroni dates back to 1919, where (legend has it) Count Camillio Negroni (Yep, Mr Negroni) requested that his local Florentine bartender stiffen his favourite cocktail – Now it’s not sure whether he was having ‘one of those days’ or just basic lady troubles, but the bartender decided to replace the soda in his Americano with gin and by doing so not only made cocktail history but possibly melted all of Count Camillio’s problems away.
We’re not sure whether we should be more grateful to the bartender for concocting the Negroni or to Count Camillo for requesting because in the end, they’re both winners in our books.
The Negroni is perhaps one of the simplest drinks you will ever make, equal parts gin, Campari and sweet vermouth stirred together and garnished with an orange rind resulting in a bittersweet love affair that grows more delicious with every sip. The problem with simplicity though is that it can be harder than complex as simplicity leaves nowhere to hide.
Now, after dropping that truth bomb, let us walk you through the tips and tricks to a perfect Negroni.
You want to start by chilling your glass of choice, we like to keep thing classic and go with a heavy old-fashioned glass (it’s pretty much a fancy tumbler). At the same time add some ice to your stirring glass and start building up your Negroni one equal part at a time.
One shot sweet vermouth, followed by one shot Campari (there really is no substitute) and of course the ingredient that changed it all, one shot of gin. The trick is now to stir your ingredients for long enough to chill them, but not so long that you water down your drink – Practice makes perfect of course. Now act fast and strain any water that has melted into your tumbler before pouring that unmistakable deep red liquid slowly over ice.
No Negroni is complete without that citrusy tang that hits you before the drink does so start cutting a sizable orange peel (avoiding the bitter white piece between the skin and the flesh) for the final steps. You want to spread those delicious fragrant oils all over the surface of the drink so pinch the peel at the edges to spread that orangey goodness. Run the rind around the lip of the glass for good measure, give it one final twist and drop it in. Your negroni is served.