It’s true the Negroni is an acquired taste. At first sip many react with bitter beer face; that is to say, they scrunch up their noses and pucker their lips and wonder what exactly they’re supposed to love about a drink with equal parts gin, vermouth and Campari (an orange-flavoured, bitter Italian aperitif). Let the ice melt a bit and have another sip. You may not be won over immediately, but the longer you entertain its bittersweet taste, the more you will like it. Trust me on this.
Whether or not you like them, you’re kind of obligated to try one this weekend because it’s Negroni Week through June 8. If traditional Negronis aren’t your thing, head over to Cilantro and check our their Negroni menu. Bartender Dominik Aschauer has created six twists on the classic drink. There’s his award-winning Cynar Flip, with Cynar Bitter, cardamom tonic and a rich egg custard, or sip on the Di Dieri, a champagne cocktail with hints of Campari and vermouth. Even the almost-classic Count Negroni (see recipe) strays from the traditional concoction with the addition of a single juniper berry and a dash of orange bitters. In the words of the menu, “Classic cocktails are so 2009.”
As part of Negroni Week, Cilantro is donating $1 to the Mustard Seed for every Negroni sold. If you still can’t get your head around the Negroni and its bitter brethren, suck it up and swallow it down. It’s for a good cause!
- 1 oz New Deal Gin
- 1 oz Carpano Antica Vermouth
- 1 oz Campari Bitter
- 1 Juniper Berry
- Bitter Truth Orange Bitters
Method: Crack juniper berry into a mixing glass. Add other ingredients with ice into mixing glass and stir until chilled (approximately 30 seconds). Strain into rocks glass with large ice cube. Garnish with a flamed orange peel over the cocktail, rim glass and toss in orange peel.
— Recipe courtesy Cilantro