If you’ve ever felt a classic negroni was a little too much, then you need to try this unusual negroni. It’s that bit more mellow and aromatic but with the same style of flavors. And it’s one bright and sippable drink.
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In general, I have to say I am not a hugely spirit-forward cocktail fan. I tend to either go for a straight drink, or I’ll opt for a cocktail that dilutes spirits, for example with juice. I’ll have the occasional neat whisky, but otherwise I find spirit strength a bit too much.
That doesn’t necessarily have to be all that much – I love sours, for example. But something to take the edge off, as it were. Sometimes, though, simply mixing in less strong spirits works for me, and that’s the case with this.
What’s in a classic negroni?
The classic negroni is equal measures of gin, campari and sweet vermouth. It was reportedly created in Florence in the early 1900s after a Count Camillo Negroni asked for a bolder take on an Americano. How true that is is anyone’s guess, but it’s an iconic cocktail these days nonetheless.
The negroni has seen a huge rise in popularity in recent years, no doubt in part due to the annual Negroni Week which an ever increasing number of bars take part in, with proceeds going to good causes. A part of that includes developing riffs on the classic.
I’m not sure this riff would quite fit in with Negroni week since it’s missing campari who are one of the sponsors, but that most certainly doesn’t mean it’s not a great one to try.
What makes this negroni “unusual”?
This take on the classic cocktail was developed by Charlotte Voisey who, as I was researching, is apparently a bit of a star in the cocktail world. She currently heads up brand advocacy for William Grant & Co (which includes Hendricks gin) in the US, and so funny enough, this take traditionally includes Hendricks gin.
Hendricks definitely fits well with the other flavors, but another relatively botanical-forward gin would work. I didn’t have any right now, though it is far and away one of my favorites. Instead, I used what has become a local favorite while we’ve been in Australia, Four Pillars.
This cocktail keeps to the traditional three equal measures formula, but it swaps in aperol for campari, and lillet blanc for the sweet vermouth. These swaps make the cocktail that bit lighter and more botanical, if that makes sense.
It’s an incredibly easy cocktail to make, since all you do is stir the three ingredients with ice to chill and mix then serve. Typical garnishes are either a slice of grapefruit, as I have used here, or a grapefruit or orange twist.
The unusual negroni is an easy, highly drinkable cocktail with citrus and aromatic flavors. It’s bright in color and taste, and definitely worth a try.
Try these other easy cocktails:
- Ginger whiskey smash
- Paper plane cocktail (which uses Aperol too!)
- Strawberry St Germain gin and tonic
- Plus get more cocktail recipes in the archives.
- 1 oz gin 30ml (one stronger on aromatics eg Hendricks is best)
- 1 oz aperol 30ml
- 1 oz lillet blanc 30ml
- Place all of the ingredients in a whiskey glass or other short glass.
- Add one or two cubes of ice and stir well for 20-30 seconds to mix and chill the drink then serve.