If I’ve said it once, I’ve said it maybe three times, I love a good Negroni. It’s a great pre-dinner cocktail that wakes up your taste buds getting you ready for a damn fine meal. The classic is a model of simplicity, one-part gin (because gin is awesome), one-part Campari and one-part sweet vermouth. However, what if you’re looking for something different? What if you’re looking to change your Negroni ways? Then you’re going to want to try an Orange Negroni!
Magisterial! If you don’t think of Ray Hudson shouting about Messi when hearing (or I guess technically reading) “magisterial,” then you’re missing out on something special. I’ll pause while you go hunt him down on YouTube.
In case you’re unfamiliar with the specifics of Negroni Week, allow me to give you a brief overview: it’s not just about people drinking. It’s about people drinking for a good cause! See? Drinking with a purpose (beyond, ya know, just getting a little drunk).
Started in 2013 as a way to raise money for charitable causes around the world, it’s grown every year since. Each restaurant, bar or retailer that takes part selects the charity where they will donate. Last year 3,500 businesses across 44 countries participated including the US, Italy, Brazil, Australia, India and China, raising more than $320,000 for charities worldwide.
Hooray for drinking and eating to help people!
If you’re looking for a food recommendation? Well, that’s another blog. Though, I can’t resist: if you get a chance and there’s an Umami Burger near you, go get their Negroni BBQ Burger.
Now, back to our contribution, the Orange Negroni. I knew we wanted to citrus-ify (totally a word) the original, mostly because I’ve been on a bit of a citrus kick lately. After playing with a few different versions of recipes, I came upon one that echoes the original in its simplicity: one-part gin, one-part Campari, one-part curacao.
Now, when I say curacao, I’m not talking about the blue stuff. That’s great in a blue cocktail (and when you need super sweetness, but it’s blue, so there’s that), but I’m talking about the classic, “dry curacao.” Don’t let the dry name fool you, it’s still sweet. It balances with the Campari nicely and compliments the herbaceous notes of the gin.
Oh, and because I like my Negronis with that bitter kick (I’m 9/10 a Punt e Mes guy for my Negronis), I added a few drops of orange bitters. Doubling down on the orange flavor, kicking up the complimentary flavors and working with the bitterness.
Now, go out there and support a good cause for Negroni Week and make yourself an Orange Negroni!
- 1½ oz. gin
- 1½ oz. Campari
- 1½ oz. curacao
- Couple of drops of orange bitters
- Glass type: Old-fashioned
- Orange peel
- Or orange wheel
- Another tricky one.
- Put all of your booze and bitters into your cocktail mixing glass with ice.
- Gotta keep you on your toes.
- Looking for a lovely clear drink here, hence stirring.
- Anyway, stir until chilled.
- Let's say a minute.
- Pour into your old-fashioned glass.
- Oh, put a big ol' sexy piece of ice in said glass.
- Garnish with your chosen orange accompaniment.
- Orange game on!