While sitting steps away from the Uffizi Museum in Florence, Italy, at the Cafe Casoni — where Count Negroni first requested his improved, gin-driven take on the popular Americano cocktail — you can still order what they say to be the original negroni recipe, made with equal parts Gordon’s gin, Martini Rossi sweet vermouth and Campari. Any bartender might wince at this combination, knowing that apart from Campari, those gin and vermouth choices might leave much to be desired, but it’s surprisingly one of the most memorable negronis I’ve ever had and a testament to how forgiving this iconic drink truly is.

Over the years, the negroni’s format of one part base spirit, one part bitter and one part fortified wine has been applied to almost every spirit combination imaginable, from bourbon to vodka to rum. At NYC’s Boilermaker, notable barmen Erick Castro and Luke Lambert give Miller time a whole new meaning with their Trailer Park Negroni, which takes on a Sbagliato feel, with beer replacing sparkling wine and Aperol substituting for Campari. Though a slice or twist of orange often helps to balance the sturdy spirits in the original negroni, only a few dashes of orange bitters are needed against the beer, saving the drink from any Blue Moon comparisons.

Described as “heaven on earth” on the menu, this beer negroni is decidedly more refreshing than bitter, and while quite far from the classic, it is too tempting not to try. As Boilermaker’s Lambert attests, this one is “best enjoyed poolside.”

Negroni Recipe

Servings: 1 cocktail

Ingredients
1 ounce Beefeater Gin
1 ounce Campari
1 ounce Dolin Sweet Vermouth

Directions:

  1. In a chilled rocks glass, combine ingredients with ice and stir for 10 seconds.
  2. Garnish with an orange twist or slice, as desired.

Trailer Park Negroni Recipe

Servings: 1 cocktail

Ingredients
3/4 ounce sweet vermouth
3/4 ounce Aperol
2 pinches salt
2 dashes orange bitters
1 Miller High Life

Directions:

  1. In a chilled beer glass, combine all ingredients and top with beer. No garnish.

Prep Time: 2 minutes
Difficulty: Easy

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