A short history of Negroni
Celebratini Negroni Week in style
The first thing you need to know about this cocktail’s name is that Negroni was a person. Descendants of General Pascal Olivier de Negroni, Count de Negroni, say he invented the drink in 1857 in Senegal - they would say that, wouldn’t they - but most mixologists and industry experts agree that the cocktail was invented in 1919 by a bartender at Caffè Giacosa (now Caffè Casoni) in Florence, who named it after Camillo Negroni, a Florentine count.
Camillo Negroni was a regular patron of Caffè Giacosa and having had way too Americanos, he once came up with an idea. “Listen, Fosco [Scarselli, the bartender, ed.],“ Negroni must’ve said. “I’d like another Americano but this time use gin instead of soda water.”
Negroni is quite strong and quite bitter. It’s made with Campari, which is bitter in its own right, and gin, which makes it even more savoury. There are numerous spin-offs as well. I’ve personally tried Purple Negroni (with butterfly pea blossom) and Creamy Negroni (with White Curacao, Peach Brandy and cocoa cream).
Negroni is probably my third favourite cocktail [after Moscow Mule and Vodka Mojito] but there is a certain element of nostalgia that helped build my appreciation for it: it reminds me of yesterday’s Italy. I wish I could go back to that.