Celebrate Negroni Week Sept. 12-18
The makers of Campari and Imbibe Magazine organize a charity event to help fund Slow Food. Slow Food is a global movement of local communities and activists across more than 160 countries seeking to change the world through food and beverage. Every September, Bars, and restaurants around the world participate in this great cause by making tasty Negronis, and the proceeds go to Slow Food. This year Negroni Week is September 12 – 18. You can find out more about Negroni week and Slow food by checking out the negroni website at negroniweek.com/about/
I have grown to love this classic cocktail. It is not a sweet cocktail but a wonderfully balanced sipper of bitter, sweet, and citrus. A Negroni is not for the faint of heart. It is definitely a potent cocktail. But it is the kind of cocktail you can sip slowly and enjoy. One crucial part, the orange peel garnish, is essential. The aroma and oils from the peel bring this cocktail together, so do not skip it. It is worth getting an orange or two to have around for making this classic cocktail. The Negroni is also a very easy cocktail to make. No shaker is required. All you need is just some ice, a good gin, Campari, sweet vermouth, and the orange peel, and you are good to go.
The history of the Negroni is an interesting one. A certain Count Camillo Negroni, in 1919, asked his friend Forsco Scarselli, a bartender at Caffe Carsoni in Florence, Italy, to make his Americano stronger. An Americano is a Campari, soda water, and Vermouth cocktail popular during the early 1900s. The story goes that Mr. Scarselli replaced the Soda water with some gin. And the Negroni cocktail was born. Count Negroni, the cocktail’s namesake, was quite the character himself. He traveled the world, even working as a cowboy in the American west in his twenties and living in London for a time, which is probably where he got his love of gin. Word soon got out about this exciting cocktail, and everyone came into the cafe for a ‘Negroni”. Count Negroni’s family even started a distillery bottling the ready-made version of the cocktail sold as Antico Negroni. The distillery still makes it today.
Using different gins can change up the flavor of a Negroni significantly. I am a huge fan of local distillery Spring44’s gins and have tried all of them in a Negroni. Each of them brings a different taste to the party. I can’t seem to decide which gin I enjoy more. Their Aged Old Tom Gin gave this Negroni a fabulous depth of flavor. A smooth, dry gin such as Spring44’s regular gin is also fantastic, bringing the Campari more forward. And Spring44 Mountain gin which is heavy in the juniper makes a lively negroni that tastes like crisp mountain air. Really, I like them all! I’ve made several in the past few weeks and look forward to many more. Experiment with your favorite gin and play around with its flavor profile; you will find how fun and different each Negroni can be!
1 oz gin, Spring44, or your favorite brand
1 oz Campari
1 oz Sweet Vermouth
1 large piece of orange peel pith removed with a peeler
Combine the gin, Campari, and the Sweet Vermouth in a glass cocktail pitcher or directly into a rocks or lowball glass.
Add a couple of Ice cubes and stir to chill the cocktail down.
Pour into your glass if you are using a pitcher, and add fresh ice.
Twist the orange peel over the cocktail to help release some of the oils and add to the finished cocktail.
Negronis can be made in a batch of multiples, stirred, chilled, poured into individual glasses, and then garnished with the orange peel.
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