For the past few weeks, Geoffrey and I have been enjoying Campari cocktails as we pull together dinner. The Negroni and Milano-Torino cocktails have been on the PPS menu for years, but we’ll admit it took a nudge from Bon Appetit‘s Al Culliton to remind us we had both the ingredients and the will to make it happen! Take your pick, you won’t be disappointed.
Your Shopping List:
1 750-ml bottle Campari
1 750-ml bottle gin (nothing fancy)
1 750-ml bottle sweet vermouth (look for Carpano Antica or Cocchi di Torino if you can)
Club soda or seltzer
We’re certain you’ve heard of The Negroni. Perhaps you have a shirt (like I do) that’s says Water for Plants, Negroni for Me! A Negroni is a bit boozy, a bit bitter, and a bit sweet sweet, with a year round appeal. After a snow day or beach day, a Negroni is what you need. It’s easy to make – with equal-parts of gin, Campari, and sweet vermouth.
We’re fans of using a Mason jar but a mixing glass works too. Pour in 1 oz. each Campari, sweet vermouth, and gin. Add ice and stir for a good 15 seconds. You can strain your Negroni into a rocks glass filled with fresh ice – it’s ideal for porch sipping or you can pour all of the ingredients over ice and give it a stir. You’re almost done.
It wouldn’t be a Negroni without an orange peel garnish. The peel is full of aromatic oils that will seriously enhance your cocktail. Use a vegetable peeler to cut a wide piece of orange peel, avoiding the pith (white stuff), as much as you can. Twist the oils out of the peel and onto the drink over the glass. (Use both hands!) Drag the peel around the rim of the glass, twist it into a nice shape, toss it in the glass and serve. Brava!
If you’ve got some sparkling around, top your Negroni with a bit of frizzante. It becomes a Negroni Sbagliato! In Italian, sbagliato is the word for mistake. Let me assure you this is no mistake!
The Americano is fizzy! If you believe my university prof, carbonation gets the alcohol into your blood stream faster. That’s a good thing. An Americano is ideal for when you want to feel like you’re lounging on a sunny piazza (or your back patio), laughing with friends, but it’s 3 degrees outside and you’re in the kitchen drinking by yourself.
Take a tall glass, like a highball or Collins, and fill it with ice. Pour in ¾ oz. Campari and 1 oz. sweet vermouth. Top with club soda or seltzer. Garnish with a lemon peel (the same technique you used for the orange peel in your Negroni); compostable or reusable straw optional.
This last drink is super easy. You build it straight in the glass you’re drinking it out of. We like that! Measure out ¾ oz. Campari and pour it into a small rocks glass full of ice. Add 2½ oz. of sweet vermouth. Stir well and garnish with both a lemon peel and an orange peel.
Vermouth is both misunderstood and underrated. It’s actually delicious. Vermouth is made from wine and it’s perishable! You should always store it in the fridge and ideally use it within a month. How could you possible use a whole bottle of vermouth? Make more Milano-Torinos, obviously!