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The Negroni was born in Florence, one of the most beloved cocktails of all time

Among the most cherished cocktails in Italy and worldwide, the Negroni has its roots in Florence, thanks to the ingenuity of Count Camillo Negroni. Today, it is considered a true institution, and its captivating history, entirely Italian, continues to captivate enthusiasts around the globe.

The renowned British magazine Drinks International compiles a list of the most consumed cocktails globally annually. In 2022, the Negroni, after eight consecutive years in the second position, claimed the top spot. Here is the ranking of the most successful cocktails in 2022:

  • Negroni
  • Old Fashioned
  • Dry Martini
  • Margarita
  • Daiquiri
  • Aperol Spritz
  • Espresso Martini
  • Manhattan
  • Mojito
  • Whiskey Sour

This is the story of the Negroni, from its inception over 100 years ago to its now-firmly established worldwide success.

The Refined Taste of Count Camillo

In his travels between London and New York, the Count became acquainted with foreign customs, particularly the alcoholic blending typical of Anglo-Saxon countries and the United States.

Count Camillo Negroni
Count Camillo Negroni | Credit

Upon his return to Florence in 1918, during a visit to his usual haunt, Caffè Casoni (Via de’ Tornabuoni), the Count, unknowingly laid the groundwork for what would become one of the most consumed cocktails globally a century later.

As a lover of the Americano cocktail, he asked the bartender to replace soda water with a gin base. This new concoction, a descendant of the Americano, gained such popularity that it became known among the bar patrons as the Americano in the style of Count Negroni.

The historic bar that played a role in this renowned piece of history is now closed, making way for an Armani boutique. Over the years, the cocktail’s name evolved, increasingly crediting its creator, Count Camillo.

Variations of the Classic Negroni

The recipe for the classic cocktail follows the sacred 1:1:1 ratio:

  • 1/3 Red Vermouth (40 mL)
  • 1/3 Gin (40 mL)
  • 1/3 Campari Bitter (40 mL)

Certainly, over more than 100 years, bartenders have proposed numerous variations to enhance its qualities or add a touch of personal flair. Among these, some have gained moderate success and are well-known, although their fame may not match that of the Classic cocktail.

The Negroni Sbagliato (wrong in Italian), one of the most famous variations, was created in 1972, substituting gin for sparkling wine.

The Negroni Rosato replaces gin with rosé wine, while the Bencini calls for white rum.

Negroni Sbagliato
Negroni sbagliato | Credit

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