10 Variations of the Classic Negroni

By Brie Shelley


Brie Shelley

June 8, 2016

Posted in Restaurant Management, Industry & Culture

Happy Negroni Week!

This week, bars and restaurants around the country are celebrating one of our favorite classic cocktails: the Negroni. Made of one part gin, one part sweet vermouth, and one part Campari, the Negroni was born in Florence in 1919, when a bar patron, Count Camillo Negroni, asked for a stronger version of an Americano. For years, the Negroni was a muted classic, only found in Italian restaurants or certain craft cocktail bars. Now, it’s estimated to appear on 300 percent more cocktail lists than it did just ten years ago.

To celebrate one of the world’s greatest cocktails and spark an effort to raise money for charities around the world, Imbibe Magazine and Campari started Negroni Week in 2013. The first year, there were 100 participants. This year, over 6,000 establishments are registered.

The official deadline for this year has already passed. However, if you’d like to participate next year and raise money for a charity of your choice, you can register your establishment for Negroni Week 2017 here.

In the spirit of Negroni Week, and to offer some alternative recipes to create in your bar or home, we’ve compiled a list of 10 modern variations of the classic cocktail.

Salted Negroni

This recipe was developed by Boodles Gin, a London gin distilled from British wheat.


1½ oz Boodles Gin

¾ oz sweet vermouth

¾ oz Campari

1 oz grapefruit juice

2 oz soda water

sea salt

1 grapefruit peel


1. Shake gin, vermouth, Campari, grapefruit juice, and a small pinch of sea salt

2. Strain into a Collins glass over ice and soda water

3. Add another small pinch of sea salt

4. Garnish with a grapefruit peel


The Knickroni

Inspired by bartender John Gertsen, Frederic Yarm combined the Negroni and the Knickebein (the nineteenth century pousse-cafe with an unbroken egg yolk in the middle) to create a unique take on the classic cocktail.


½ oz sweet vermouth

½ oz Campari

1 small or medium egg, separated, with the yolk unbroken

½ oz gin

1 dash Regan’s Orange Bitters No. 6


1. Stir vermouth and Campari together in a 2 oz sherry glass

2. Gently layer unbroken egg yolk on top

3. Carefully layer gin on top of the yolk

4. Beat the egg white until stiff with a whisk or in a cobbler shaker with a balled-up Hawthorne spring

5. Cover the gin layer with the egg white

6. Garnish with the bitters


The Unusual Negroni

For a light alternative to the Negroni, especially for first-timers, Charlotte Voisey, a mixologist from William Grant & Sons Distillers, created The Unusual Negroni.


1 oz Hendrick’s Gin

1 oz Lillet blanc

1 oz Aperol

1 small grapefruit slice


1. Stir all ingredients with ice in a rocks glass

2. Garnish with grapefruit slice


Cold Brew Coffee Negroni

Coffee and Campari make for a great combination. In this cocktail, the Vespr Coffeebar in Orlando replaces gin with cold brew concentrate for an extra kick.


1½ oz cold-brew concentrate**

1 oz Campari

1 oz sweet vermouth

1 orange peel


1. Stir ingredients together in a mixing glass with ice

2. Strain into a rocks glass with fresh ice cubes

3. Express orange peel oil over cocktail

4. Rest garnish on top of the drink

**Cold-brew Ingredients

15 tbsp ground coffee

16 oz room temperature water


1. In a french press, combine ground coffee and water

2. Let stand for 17 hours

3. Plunge to separate grounds

4. Pour into vessel and store for two weeks


Forquilha Negroni

This cocktail is a simple Negroni variation from Forquilha, in Sao Paulo, Brazil.


1¼ oz Beefeater Gin

1 oz Campari

1 oz Carpano Antica vermouth

2 dashes Angostura orange bitters

1 orange peel


1. Stir ingredients with ice in a mixing glass to chill

2. Strain into a rocks glass over a large ice cube

3. Twist orange peel over the drink to express the oils

4. Use orange piece as garnish



For a simple switch, this recipe calls for bourbon instead of gin.


1½ oz Maker’s Mark Bourbon

1 oz Campari

¾ oz sweet vermouth

1 orange peel


1. Pour the liquid ingredients into a mixing glass

2. Fill mixing glass ⅔ full with ice and stir until well chilled (about 45 seconds)

3. Strain into a rocks glass with one large ice cube

4. Garnish with an orange twist


Oaxacan Negroni

This drink, developed by the Cocktail Dudes, replaces gin with smoky mezcal and silver tequila, giving the drink a south-of-the-border feel.


¾ oz Silver Tequila

¼ oz mezcal

1 oz Cocchi Americano

1 oz Campari

1 orange peel


1. Add all ingredients to a mixing glass with ice

2. Stir to chill

3. Strain into a Margarita glass

4. Garnish with an orange twist


Summer Streets Negroni

During Negroni Week 2015, the Penrose, in New York City, featured this vermouth-forward Negroni with a hint of gin, Campari, warm honey, and fresh citrus.


1½ oz Carpano Bianco vermouth

1 oz Campari

½ oz citrus-forward gin (e.g. Brooklyn Gin)

¾ oz fresh lemon juice

½ oz honey

Splash of soda

Fresh basil leaves


1. Combine all ingredients, except for the soda, in a shaker tin with ice

2. Shake until chilled

3. Strain into a rocks glass with fresh lime

4. Top with a splash of soda

5. Garnish with a few basil leaves


Rosita Cocktail

This twist on a Negroni, from Mr. Boston: Official Bartender’s Guide, features a slightly bitter combination, served in an Old Fashioned glass.


1½ oz reposado tequila

½ oz sweet vermouth

½ oz dry vermouth

½ oz Campari

1 dash Angostura bitters

1 lemon twist


1. Stir all ingredients in a mixing glass with ice

2. Strain into a glass filled with cracked ice

3. Garnish with a lemon twist


Negroni Fizz  

For a lighter, more bubbly version of the Negroni, Claire Lower from XoJane tops off her cocktail with a splash of sparking rosé.


1 oz gin

1 oz Campari

Splash of sparkling rosé

1 lemon peel


1. Stir gin, Campari and ice in a mixing glass

2. Strain into a flute or coupe glass

3. Top with a splash of rosé

4. Garnish with a lemon peel

Although it took a while to catch on in the states, in the last decade, the Negroni has transformed into a staple of any decent cocktail menu. To keep up with the trend and to celebrate classic cocktail culture, try including a decent selection of Negronis at your establishment this week, and consider participating in next year’s Negroni Week!

Looking for some more cocktail recipe inspiration? Download our free Cocktail Recipe eBook.


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