Can you give me a brief rundown of the Negroni’s
The Negroni was born in Florence
in 1919, a hundred years ago. There was a noble man, his name was
Count Camillo Negroni, so his surname gave the name to the drink.
He was living between Florence, his city, and London, and
travelling a lot. He was always drinking Americanos: bitters,
vermouth and soda. But his growing familiarity with London lead him
down the gin path, so once he came back to Forsco Scarselli, the barman of Cafe Casoni where he used to go
to have his Negroni, he asked him to add some drops of gin to his
Americano and the rest is history.
The Negroni has been around for 100 years, but it seems
to have only entered mainstream cocktail culture in more recent
years… why do you think this is?
I’ve got different theories.
Mainly I think that if you go to Italy and ask for a Negroni, it’s
like asking for pasta - it’s special yes, but it’s not that
special, it’s something that we’ve always been drinking. I believe
that around 10 years ago, the gin craze started so now we have
millions of gin brands. More lately, the Italian amaro and bitter
craze started as well. So if you go for example to the US, one of
the main markets for alcohol in the world, what you get is a lot of
bitter, amaro, vermouth. They’re really popular again and new
brands are coming out or iconic brands are trying to expand and
doing more and more. So the gin, as I said, has been very strong in
the last 10, 12 maybe 15 years, and now together with the bitters
and amaro and vermouth, the Negroni is the best combination that
you can use to glorify all of them. At the same time, from a more
romantic point of view, a Negroni is a drink you can have before
dinner or you can have after dinner. It makes everyone happy. From
a bartender’s point of view, you can play a lot with the Negroni,
because despite there being only three ingredients, you can change
all of them so the combinations are countless.
What is the significance of the Negroni in Italian
It’s the symbol of the
aperitivo. You know, when you go for aperitivo, you really need
something to stimulate your appetite. That is what aperitivo
means. Aperire in
latin means ‘open’, so it will open my appetite somehow. Everyone
in Italy - every bartender, every old lady - is able to make a
Negroni and glorify this moment of the day, which is a moment when
people after work meet and socialise.