Monday, Dec 05, 2022

Negroni Week 2021: How A Classic 100-Year-Old Cocktail Still Causes A Stir

Negroni Week 2021: How A Classic 100-Year-Old Cocktail Still Causes A Stir

Negroni Week 2021: Leading the charge on this weekend is the ninth year of the Negroni Week celebration.

Here's why Negroni is still a beloved cocktail!

You can almost taste it before it arrives. and can certainly visualize it -- a crystal rock glass glistening with a striking ruby-colored liquid, a slice of orange or orange peel floating above. 

It’s weekend and if you are someone who has graduated as a cocktail fanatic, we are very sure you have a glass of Negroni on your hand by now. For a cocktail that is as old as 100 years, it was quite amazing to know that it's still a very famous conversation starter.

Negroni is that beautiful drink that has all its distinctive components in equal measure - not too less, not too much. Explaining this cocktail-nectar, Akash Tomar, Diageo India Brand Ambassador comments, “Negroni is an Italian cocktail made with equal parts of gin, sweet vermouth and Campari, it is also considered aperitif style of cocktail. Authentically it’s a stirred cocktail which is served over ice in an old-fashioned glass garnished with orange slice or an orange peel.”

Is there a more perfect drink? Or a more beautiful one? Don't let that orange-red colour fool you. This is not a girly drink. It's not a manly drink either. It's, as Buzzfeed put it recently, an "everyone drink."

Just ask Tomar and he would tell you, “The origin of Negroni is still unknown but the most common story around the cocktail talks about an Americano which was spiked up with gin. In 1919, Caffe Giacosa General Pascal Oliver de Negroni asked the bartender to strengthen his favorite cocktail, the Americano i.e., (equal part of sweet vermouth and Campari toped up with soda) by adding gin rather than the normal soda water. The bartender added an orange garnish rather than the typical lemon garnish of the Americano to signify that it was a different drink.”

A classic Negroni remains all-time favorite but there are few variations one can try out:

  • Infused gin or vermouth can be used to make a different variation of the cocktail
  • One can top up the Negroni with some sparkling wine
  • Dry Negroni is also an option in which we use dry vermouth instead of sweet
  • Cold brew is also used at some places to top up the Negroni

Tips for making perfect Negroni:

To make a perfect Negroni, we need to keep in mind a few things:

  • Take Tanqueray, Campari and sweet vermouth and add 30 ml of each in a mixing glass and stir well with ice
  • Strain it over a fresh ice in an old-fashioned glass, always use good quality ice for less dilution
  • Do not use the same ice from the mixing glass; use fresh and big ice cubes, which will keep the drink chilled for long with less dilution
  • Use fresh orange zest/peal for garnish it will add on freshness and good aroma over the drink

What ice should be used?

Ice should be of good quality and possibly big cubes as it helps keeping the drink chilled for long duration with less dilution. Never use the same ice which is being used while stirring always use fresh ice.

Does the age of the alcohol impact the taste of Negroni?

Age doesn’t impact much as we use all non-age statement liquids for Negroni. Within the cocktail, Gin is a white spirit which doesn’t come with an age statement same as Campari and vermouth. The age of the alcohol doesn’t impact the taste, but quality of Gin and vermouth might affect the taste as low-quality spirits might not make a perfect Negroni.