The negroni is an Italian cocktail so good it gets its very own week from September 13-19. It might, in theory, just be Campari, gin and vermouth in a glass. But, of course, there's much more to a good one than that.
Melbourne Bar Americano's Matt Bax shares his secrets to making an excellent negroni.
1. A frozen glass
You need to be a bit of a prepper to up your negroni game at home. Pop your favourite cocktail glass in the freezer for that professional touch.
2. Decent ice
Splurge and buy yourself an oversized, silicon ice block mould. It's the best $10 you will ever spend.
3. Zest is king
Use a vegetable peeler on a nice deep "orange" orange zest. Don't use orange slices or wedges in your negroni. At Bar Americano, I like to peel a long zest and then fold over so both sides of the peel are pretty.
4. Support local and invest in a quality pre-batched negroni
"Let's be honest, even with the same ingredients you can't cook like Ben Shewry," says Matt. "Forgive the arrogance but you also can't mix like Bar Americano. Thankfully now you don't need to as many great bars sell pre-mixed cocktails. You are also supporting local hospitality which really need your help right now.
"Pre-batching used to be a dirty word in mixology, and since we have been doing it now for over 10 years now we are certainly no stranger to the scepticism. But thankfully commonsense prevailed and now it's considered industry-standard practice amongst the best bars of the world.
"Think of cocktails as fun soups. The best soups are not made from scratch but improve with time as the flavours marry and mingle.
"I can only speak for our Bar Americano version, but we recommend keeping our pre-batched negroni in the freezer as we do at the bar here. It means you will always have that perfect cocktail ready in an instant, whenever a celebratory mood or lockdown meltdown hits you."
Here's cheers to that.
Pre-batched negronis to order online
- Bar Americano's famous negroni cocktail
- Byrdi's Wattleseed negroni
- Above Board's negroni
- Little Lon's negroni cocktail and slice kit
- Black Pearl's Merri negroni
- Bass & Flinders Distillery's Sweet & Spicy negroni
- Loch Brewery & Distillery Whisky negroni
- Bloodwood Newtown's one-litre negroni
- Shady Pines Saloon bottled negroni
- Chophouse bottled negroni
- Continental Deli negronis
- Dulcie's King Cross negronis
- Three Blue Ducks classic negroni