Aperol Negroni

Chances are if you’re reading this, you already know what a Negroni is and how it should be made. As I’ve discovered a few times, there are some strong views about this iconic cocktail. Mess with it at your peril. The generally accepted combination is equal measures of;

  • Gin
  • Campari
  • Sweet vermouth

Personally I find the Campari a bit dominant with these proportions, and yet I like Campari! And so I tend to go extra with the red vermouth, and cut back on the Campari. For me it’s a better balanced cocktail. However on chatting to London bartenders about it, I appreciate I might be in a minority of one. I’m ok with that. And now for this alternative.

Negroni - light version using Aperol in place of Campari
Negroni – light version using Aperol in place of Campari

Aperol is now made by the same company as Campari and is also what might best be described as a bitter aperitif style of spirit. In Southern Europe you will mostly see it in the Aperol Spritz, combined with Prosecco and soda water. It is a fantastic refreshing early evening drink after you’ve spent a day on the beach, or travelling. That’s my recommendation anyway.

But it is an easy step to add it to your Negroni instead of the Campari. It is a lighter flavour and is lighter in alcoholic content at 11% ABV (compared with Campari’s 15%.) It is bitter sweet with a slightly orangey flavour. And now back to equal proportions works fine as the Aperol doesn’t dominate in the way that Campari does.

Aperol Negroni 

Straightforward then this. To your shaker add ice and then the following;

  • 1 1/2 msrs Gin
  • 1 1/2 msrs Martini sweet vermouth
  • 1 1/2 msrs Aperol

Serve in an elegant glass to make your cocktail look as good as it will taste. Cheers. I’ve tried other red vermouths too such as Punt e Mes but I find this makes many cocktails a bit bitter for my taste. So back to the more mainstream Martini version.



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