Negroni: Bitters Kick Kicking on a Classic

I love gin. It reminds me of the dense, foggy, coniferous forests that suddenly break onto the dramatic cliffs of the Pacific Northwestern coast.  I also love bitters not only for their bitterness, but also for their stomach-settling abilities (I didn’t believe it either, but case in point of don’t knock it ’til you try it.)

The two meet up in full-force in the Negroni, a classic that I’m sure will become cliché soon enough in the craft cocktail revival, so try it out before your bartender gives you the side-eye for asking for one like a loser.



1 part gin
1 part sweet vermouth
1 part Campari

orange peel for garnish and its oils

cocktail shaker for shaking
Hawthorne strainer for straining

Shake everything up. Strain into a glass (up) or serve on the dirty ice (which kind of makes more sense than getting new ice; while they might not be the most aesthetically pleasing, new and non-melted cubes, they’ll be coated in alcohol instead of not. Isn’t that the better alternative? You’re also not throwing away water for no reason.)

Twist the orange peel over your drink to release some oils, and drop in.

bar spoon for stirring
glass for stirring within
Hawthorne strainer for straining

Add the sweet vermouth, gin, and Campari to your mixing glass filled with ice. Stir for about thirty seconds, or until well-chilled. Same as above: strain out the ice, or serve on the dirty ice. Top with the orange oil and peel.

I know, this is kind of mostly like the Americano that I bullied by calling a bastard child. Minor as it is and as powerful as the bitters are, the one ingredient swap of gin for club does make a very noticeable difference to the flavor compound (and, of course, the element of effervescence).


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