Distillers Table - 'Negroni'

We are big Negroni fans in the distillery so it felt only right to dedicate one of our Distillers Table events to the classic drink. As with most classics there are lots of great stories attached to its creation and a natural evolution from other drinks. We used this as our inspiration this month and decided to serve 4 drinks from different stages in the story.

So said first served in the 1860s the drink was originally known as the ‘Milano-Torino’ because of its ingredients (Campari from Milan and Punt e Mas Vermouth from Turin). Soda was then added and the name of the drink changed to pay homage to Primo Carnera the first Italian (and non American) to win the world heavyweight championships in U.S.A. in 1933.

Ours was served with a classic style bitter, Berto from Italian producers Quaglia and Del professore Rosso vermouth created with the Jerry Thomas project in Rome. Served long in a highball, topped with soda and garnished with a lemon wheel.

In Italian ‘Sbagliato’ means mistake. Supposedly the story goes that a bartender grabbed sparkling wine instead of gin when making a Negroni, which turned out to be a pretty delicious accident.

For ours we decided to add the fizz as an addition to the drink rather than totally replace the gin, using our new Summer seasonal gin ‘Hathor’ for its sweeter fruit notes (Pomegranate, Fig leaf and Heather flower). For the bitter we used the Berto Aperitivo liqueur which brings bright, sweeter notes as well as the bitterness and Lustau vermut Rojo which uses a blend of Amontillado and Pedro Ximenezto to create a really interesting and tasty Spanish red vermouth.

Classic Negroni
Legend has it that Count Negroni asked bartender Forsco Scarselli, to strengthen his favourite cocktail ‘the Americano. Scarselli obliged by replacing the soda with gin, soon after everyone was said to be coming into the bar and asking for a ‘Negroni.’

Here we served our Woden Negroni (that is always available in the distillery if you happen to be passing by). Equal parts Woden (Grapefruit and Fennel seed), Berto bitter and Del professore Rosso over ice with a slice of fresh grapefruit.

Gin & It
Simply put this is a sweet Martini, the ‘It’ in the name standing for the Italian vermouth half of the drinks ingredients.

We wanted a decadent, rich finish so served our final drink using a Barollo Chinato which is a big hefty rich sweetened vermouth and Spiny gin made for Spiny Lobster (Pink peppercorn, Rosemary and Fennel seed) to match the herbal notes from the aromatised wine.


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