Designed as an aperitif, a good Negroni is the very definition of balance and simplicity, and its continued popularity comes as no surprise to us here at Gin Foundry.
This ruby red Italian charmer is popping up everywhere, having entered the mainstream in mid-2015. While the Negroni may look sweet, it’s anything but – it’s strong, bitter alcohol tastes are revered; there’s no syrup masking anything here. Drink it before a good meal, and by good we mean big, because a gin, vermouth and Campari combination would have sunk Henry VIII.
How to make a Negroni:
20ml Sweet Vermouth
1 fresh orange peel
Pour gin, vermouth and Campari into a mixing glass. Add ice and stir until chilled. Strain into a rocks glass and garnish with an orange peel
A brief, inebriated history:
The most widely reported version of this drink’s origin is that it was invented at Caffe Casoni in Florence, Italy in 1919. Legend tells that Count Camillo Negroni asked his friend, bartender Forsco Scarselli, to strengthen his favourite cocktail – the Americano – by replacing the soda water with gin. Scarselli added an orange garnish, rather than the lemon you’d usually get with an Americano, and the drink took off. Before long, everyone was coming into the bar for a ‘Negroni.’
Camillo Negroni himself was an interesting figure. He travelled around America while in his twenties and lived the life of a cowboy for a period. He also lived in London, which, we like to think with its prevalent gin scene, led to him (perhaps inadvertently) creating one of the most iconic cocktails of all time.
The Negroni family was quick to take advantage of the cocktail’s success too, founding the Negroni Distillery in 1919, in Treviso, Italy, where they produced a ready-made version of the drink, sold as Antico Negroni. The distillery is still open today, the under the ownership of a new family.
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