Aperitif is a French word which means “to open”. It is an alcoholic beverage usually served before meals to stimulate (to open) the apetite. Exactly as Negroni does.
Aperitifs became very popular in Europe in the late 19th century. By 1900, they were served and drunk in the United States. Negroni is one of those exceptional before meal drinks. According to many spirits and cocktail writers, an Italian Count named Camillo Negroni, has been the inventor of this classic drink. Furthermore, in our books we have read that this bright, deep ruby red colored cocktail has been born in Florence around 1920. The recipe for Negroni calls for equal parts of gin, Italian vermouth and, of course, Campari. That means that it is such a simple cocktail that even a bad bartender can’t flub. Unless if he/she uses a badly preserved vermouth. Negroni, is not that kind of balanced cocktails where sweetness struggles to equilibrate with sourness. On the contrary it is a medium dry cocktail that can make your taste buds wake up. It is a really simple but complex concoction that can make you say: “Ok, now I really want to have some food”. The drink was a huge success when it was invented, and it soon spread to bars all over the world. Below, you can read the recipe for a spicy, herbal, complex and medium-dry Negroni:
- 30 ml gin
- 30 ml sweet red vermouth (like Martini Rosso, Cinzano, Lillet, Dubbonet, Carpano)
- 30 ml campari
The Negroni may be served:
- on the rocks (pictured): Fill a mixing glass with large ice cubes. Add the gin, vermouth and campari. Stir for half a minute. Strain into an old fashioned glass filled with ice. Garnish with an orange peel.
- straight up: Add all the ingredients to a mixing glass and fill with ice. Stir for 30 seconds and strain into a chilled cocktail glass. Garnish, as before, with an orange peel.