With the recent launch of Volpi in Liverpool and the imminent arrival of International Negroni Week it's a great time for those lovers of something a little bitter in the North West.
It is 100 years since Count Camillo Negroni asked his bartender and friend Fosco Scarselli to mix him something a little stronger and add gin to the already popular Americano cocktail instead of soda water.
Today it is a classic cocktail you can name call anywhere in the world and be reasonably confident of getting a well made drink thanks to its traditional equal parts recipe of Campari, gin and sweet vermouth.
However like all things in life there is the Negroni and then there is "the Negroni" and Chris Edwards at Volpi has been dedicating a lot of time and research with his colleagues to evolve and adapt the classic recipe and has been focused on the key areas of ratios, dilution and infusions.
"The Negroni is my favourite classic cocktail, as an aperitif its a precursor to something good about to happen whether that be food or good times with friends."
So what are the secrets to a great Negroni? We ask Chris for his tips on.....
We dilute all our Negroni recipes by 25% with filtered water. This allows us to serve drinks straight from the fridge without stirring which helps with consistency and dilution rates play a big part in the final flavour profile.
We pre-batch our drinks as it helps us to achieve a consistency of product and also allows us to be more accurate with ingredients by measuring them out at larger volumes than a single serve. In a single serve a slight over-pour can have a big effect on the final balance and so batching up in larger quantities helps to overcome this. It is also means we can serve our customers quickly and efficiently.
Rather than zesting fresh citrus on top of the drink we infuse citrus in our batches for a couple of days which provides more of a background note than a strong upfront flavour that garnishing can create. Our classico recipe which is 3 gin, 2 campari, 2 sweet french vermouth is infused with thyme and orange peel which helps to incorporate our Mediterranean style and focus.
Volpi meaning Fox in Italian is the evolution of the popular Filter + Fox brand inspired by the lifestyle, colours, shapes and flavours of the villages that run along the Italian-French border serving simple wines, great coffee, coffees and cocktails.
Volpi will be serving their unique range of Negroni's supported by Campari at Cocktails in the City Liverpool on June 28 - 29th at The Great Baltic Warehouse which coincides with International Negroni Week.