Three ways to turn me off a cocktail include looking like fruit juice, tasting very bitter and filled with Campari. To its credit, the negroni overcomes my petty obstacles and delivers one of the better palate-preparing punches of any aperitif this side of a pastis. I first had it in 1999 or 2000 at some low-key LES bar back when both the neighborhood and the drink were cool. The negroni predates both the neighborhood’s gentrification the cocktail resurgence by about a century: it likely originated in Florence in the last century’s early teens. I don’t go to the LES much these days, but I often precede my appetizer with this drink.


  • 1oz gin
  • 1oz campari
  • 1oz sweet vermouth
  • ice
  • orange peel
  • sprig of rosemary


  • shaker
  • stirrer
  • strainer
  • old-fashioned glass


  1. Pour first three ingredients over ice in a shaker. Stir feverishly.
  2. Pour contents of the shaker into glass over ice.
  3. Add the twist of orange and the sprig of rosemary.