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How to Make a Negroni

How to Make a Negroni

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We learn the steps to this classic cocktail

Ali Rosen


When making a classic cocktail, there is no room for deviation. Call it by another name if you must (frozen margarita anyone?), but if you're going to take on a classic you need to make it right.

So it is with the Negroni, a simple classic that has roared back into popularity in recent years. It's one of the easiest to make because no matter how many batches you have drunk (no judgement) the recipe is foolproof. All you need to do, no matter the size of your cocktail, is pour all three ingredients in equal parts. You don't even need to shake it — who said cocktails had to be complicated? Stick to the classics and you'll be fine.

For the full recipe, watch the video above with Please Don't Tell's Jeff Bell or follow the instructions below:

1 ounce Campari
1 ounce gin
1 ounce sweet vermouth

Stir all together, serve on the rocks. Garnish with an orange twist.

Virgin Negroni

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The trademark flavors of a refreshing Negroni come from the equal parts of gin, sweet vermouth, and slightly bitter Campari. To make this virgin version, nonalcoholic white and red wines are infused with citrus peel and toasted spices to mimic the gin and sweet vermouth. The Campari is swapped out for the key ingredient, Sanbittèr soda, which is a bright red, bitter Italian soda that makes this drink a satisfying stand-in to the boozy original.

What to buy: Nonalcoholic or dealcoholized wines are produced by removing the alcohol from fermented grape juice, but they do contain a minuscule percentage of alcohol. They can be found at well-stocked liquor stores or online.

Sanbittèr is an imported bitter Italian soda that is similar in flavor to Campari. It can be purchased at Italian grocers or online.

Game plan: This recipe makes 2 cups each of the nonalcoholic red and white wine infusions, which is enough to make 16 Virgin Negronis. The infusions can be refrigerated in covered containers for up to 1 month.

Also, this recipe calls for the use of juniper berries, which pregnant women should avoid.

See more about mocktails here. And get our virgin versions of other classic cocktails at the links below:

It’s Always Negroni Season: Here Are 3 Ways to Mix the Perfect One

Jason O'Bryan

Jason O'Bryan's Most Recent Stories

Jason O'Bryan

There is a problem with the Negroni cocktail, but it has nothing to do with how it tastes. The problem is that it&rsquos almost too perfect. It encourages complacency.

What&rsquos a Negroni? It is a bittersweet Italian cocktail, reportedly invented by Count Camillo Negroni, who in 1919 walked into the Caffe Casoni in Florence, ordered an Americano with gin instead of soda water and created arguably the greatest drink ever made. It&rsquos equal parts Campari, gin, and sweet vermouth. The bitterness of Campari makes it, like most worthy endeavors, a bit challenging, but once the taste is acquired, it enriches your life.


Almost no recipes ever specify the types of gin or vermouth to apportion. Use any gin or sweet vermouth you like, and it&rsquos going to taste great. Swap out Campari for any of its competitors, and it&rsquos going to taste great. Understir it, overstir it, add orange bitters, screw up the measurements, carbonate it, age it in barrels, do whatever you want to it, and it&rsquoll still be terrific. It works for men or women, on first dates or at business meetings, after dinner, before dinner, before breakfast, on the train, in outer space, anywhere, always, forever. It&rsquos bitter, it&rsquos sweet, it&rsquos perfect. It is one of the handful of mixed drinks that enjoys universal respect in the cocktail industry.

So almost no one looks for the best Negroni because saying &ldquobest Negroni&rdquo is a little like saying &ldquobest Ferrari&rdquo or &ldquobest orgasm&rdquo&mdashyeah, there are shades of difference there, some better than others, but even a terrible one is still better than almost everything else in the world. But&hellipif you could have the best one every time, wouldn&rsquot you?

I have some suggestions, based on a month of double-blind, side-by-sides and about a decade of Negroni love. No brands were contacted for this project, and neither money nor bottles were solicited or received. This is for science. And love.

One major stipulation: A Negroni is equal parts gin, sweet vermouth, and Campari. Many august bartenders will mess with the ratios, adding more gin to combat the sweetness. Many more bartenders consider this heresy. I encourage you to follow your heart, but at least start with equal parts I acknowledge that an equal-parts Negroni is sweeter than I normally want, but I also consider it completely perfect, and I don&rsquot know enough about quantum physics to understand how both can be true at the same time.

Here are six more variations on the negroni to try.

The classic negroni

Classic negronis deliver a mercurial combination of bitter, fruity and juniper-laced tones all in one go. Accentuated by an orange peel garnish, there is citrus lift on the nose before the barrage of flavours dance across your mouth. For a classic combination, try Sipsmith Gin with Dolin Rouge and Campari.

The London Dry Gin is smooth, juniper forward and multifaceted in its own right but crucially, it brings a classically styled flavour profile to the mix. Dolin Rouge is one of the most overlooked quality vermouths on the market – it's perfectly balanced combining bittersweet sarsaparilla, winter spices and a dry finish, ideal for negronis.

The indulgent negroni

Sometimes, you want a lot of depth to a negroni as well as some weight on the mouthfeel. Picking the right gin to do this is only half of the answer if you really want to achieve greatness. Begin with Carpano Antica Formula Vermouth for its slightly syrupy profile of dried fruits, cherries and a touch of cinnamon.

Then, choose a gin that’s both unusual and that will stand up to heavier nature of its partner. Two Birds Sipping Gin is a double wooded gin, which sees the distillery’s Old Tom Gin undergo a unique maturation using a combination of virgin pecan wood and small European casks.

The gin is sweet, delicious and at 47.5% ABV, matches the vermouth to perfection. The richness and complexity of this deep ruby and ambered Negroni will have your senses titillating with excitement while also delivering a carefully contemplative mix.

The light and lively negroni

Both Martin Miller’s Gin and Belsazar Vermouth Rosé offer lighter, fresher takes on their respective categories, but without compromising on taste. Pink grapefruit, orange blossom, raspberries and redcurrants bring out the flavourful top notes of the Rosé Vermouth, which are perfectly matched in Martin Miller’s bright and buoyant flavours.

With Campari in the mix, the citrusy aspects are accentuated and the trio create a light, lively negroni, aptly nicknamed a Pink Negroni, that’s impeccable for pairing with canapés.

The aromatic negroni

Mancino Rosso Amaranto Vermouth is made using 38 botanicals including rhubarb root, juniper berries, orange zest, cloves and myrrh. When paired with Swedish made Herno London Dry Gin, it compliments the big meadowsweet flavours inherent to all of the distillery’s gins – creating an aromatic, almost medicinal combination.

As a pre-dinner combination, this will whet your appetite perfectly, but when served with Manchego cheese, quince or cured meats – it positively supreme.

The fragrant negroni

Aperol is another alternative to Campari. It’s slightly sweeter, has less forceful herbal tones and about half the alcohol content. When used in a negroni, we find that it works best with lively almost perfumed gins such as G’Vine Nouaison. The gin adds a beautiful heady aroma of soft flowers and grapes, but still has juniper at it’s core.

This works well with the Aperol but to round off the trilogy, try Cocci Storico Vermouth di Torino. The Vermouth is both immensely complex with fruity liquorice and a slight smokiness – but it’s not overpowering. In this combination, it helps anchor the Aperol and G’Vine duo, which would otherwise lack a firm backbone to make a negroni that really resonates.

The delicate negroni

Campari is not for everyone and for those who don’t like negronis, the bitter orange aperitif is usually the cause of their scrupled faces. If that sounds like you, fear not, you can still make a negroni – you just need to change the style of vermouth and the choice of “bitters”.

For a more delicate mix, try equal parts of Shortcross Barrel Aged Gin, Lillet Blanc Dry Vermouth and Suze in a White Negroni. The aromatic Gentian notes of Suze, combined with its honey like sweetness add depth to the soft and fruity Lillet Blanc. Shortcross Barrel Aged Gin harnesses both of these elements and with its mellow wood, fruity berries and underlying leafy tones, is a match made in heaven.

What Are the Best Ingredients for A Negroni?

This Negroni cocktail recipe is fairly easy, but of course, the better quality the ingredients, the better tasting your Negroni will be. We recommend using Fords Gin or Tanqueray to make your Negroni. Also, using Martini and Rossi Sweet Vermouth may give you a different flavor profile than if you use Cocchi Vermouth di Torino.

Buy your gin, and vermouth directly through our link to have your booze ordered directly to your door.

How to make a classic Negroni

Equal parts (25ml) gin, sweet vermouth and bitters (traditionally Campari)

Add your gin, sweet vermouth and bitters to a mixing glass with ice and stir until chilled

Strain into a rocks glass and garnish with an orange peel

It really is that simple. You can even just mix straight into your drinking glass. This is the most traditional version, but you can mix it up by trying different gins, different sweet vermouths and different bitter combinations. For example, if you find the Campari too strong you could swap it for the lighter flavour of Aperol.

How to Make a Negroni - Recipes

Planning a cocktail party? Add this drink to your menu to add an Italian touch to your party. Negroni is a popular cocktail drink originating from Italy. With equal quantities of Campari and gin, Negroni has sweet vermouth in it as well. Just mix them with crushed ice cubes and you are good to go. It has a bittersweet taste which will make you go wow. It is bursting with different flavors and is refreshing. Traditionally prepared using soda, this Negroni recipe is made without it and yet has a classic taste of its own. This red colored drink is ideal for a sophisticated cocktail party. It is one of the best Gin drinks and can be prepared in no time. It is garnished with a twisted orange peel. So, ditch your usual drinks this time and give Negroni a try. You will fall in love with this drink. Try this easy-to-make and interesting cocktail recipe with the appetizer of your choice. Don't forget to add this drink to your cocktail menu, next time you throw a party. Trust us, you won't regret it.

About MLI

Ciao! My name is Marta Correale, I am the travel-loving Italian Mama behind this Mama Loves Italy Blog. On this site, you will find Italy travel ideas, inspiration, guides and tips that I hope will help you plan a wonderful stay in my wonderful, complex, magical country. Read more

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How to Make a Sbagliato Cocktail, the Spritzy Twist on a Negroni

Bright scarlet and just the right amount of bitterness, the Negroni is a tried and true classic cocktail. This Italian beverage, which recently celebrated its 100th anniversary, is made with just three ingredients&mdashequal parts of Campari, gin, and vermouth. The Negroni is so popular that at least a dozen other drinks have been inspired by it. One of those drinks was never really meant to happen at all&mdashbut we thank our shiny red stars that it did because this it&rsquos that special. Meet the Sbagliato: a low-ABV, fizzy version of the Negroni, made with prosecco instead of vermouth. So, what makes this bubbly beverage so great? &ldquoThe Sbagliato is a light, pleasant, and low-ABV cocktail that&rsquos perfect for consumers who are new to Italian red bitters and looking for a less spirit-forward option as they explore the category,&rdquo says Anne Louise Marquis, portfolio brand ambassador for Campari America. Because there are only three ingredients in the drink, it&rsquos important to choose high-quality ones. Marquis recommends looking for &lsquovermouth di Torino,&rsquo which means that it hails from the Turin region of Italy and was produced with traditional methods and ingredients.

While you might be tempted to swipe the peel around the rim too for added flavor, Swenson advises against it. The residue will cause a slight numbing effect when you sip, which alters your drinking experience.

There are plenty of different Negroni iterations out there𠅊n Americano uses club soda instead of gin, while a Sbagliato ("mistake," in Italian) swaps in Prosecco. Swenson says you can play around with rye, bourbon, mezcal, rum, and other spirits to create your own Negroni riff. Just remember the drink’s three components: bitter, sweet, and strong. (For what it’s worth, Negroni Sbagliatos are her favorite.)


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