Negroni Week 2022: the best Negroni in London

Negroni Week 2022: the best Negroni in London

Make it a long night: at Quo Vadis Negroni

Make it a long night: at Quo Vadis Negroni

We love a spritz as much as the next Italophile who pretends the sidewalk outside the pub is the Amalfi Coast, and while for the past couple of years the Campari spritz has slowly pulled its sister Aperol’d onto menus across town (albeit from Russell Norman’s Ugly, Cynar is preferred to the two of them), for those who really think bitter is better, there’s a lot more joy in the sour mix of a Negroni.

A part Campari, a part gin and a part sweet vermouth; it has never been a concoction for the faint of heart, but it is what you might call a sizzling way to wander around aperitif time.

Its charm is lasting: legend has it that the cocktail was mixed for the first time at Caffe Casoni in Florence in 1919 at the request of a certain Count Camillo Negroni, who wanted to exchange his Americano’s drink for gin. It fell off the radar for a while, returned in part due to the Octopus revolution, and has remained in various forms ever since, thanks in part to its innate malleability: gin can be swapped for almost any alcohol except l warm and enveloping embrace of Campari and sweet vermouth always produces something good. Or go to the other side; keep the gin but trade Campari and vermouth with Lillet and Suze, and you’ll be in a white Negroni.

Perhaps it is this malleability that means that last summer the Negroni was named by Drinks International as the most popular cocktail in the world. It is not surprising, therefore, that Negroni’s week has become one of the very few of those unbearable “weeks” or “days” to draw upon: its appeals are rather more evident than, for example, national eggnog day or wine week. of the seagull.

This year, as for much else, Negroni’s official week is suspended out of respect for the late queen. She would go through this week and next. That said, the drink feels like a fitting toast to her Majesty, as her favorite cocktail – a gin and Dubonnet – has a similar, albeit somewhat sweeter, taste.

Whether it’s a loyal devotee looking for the best of the best, or a more recent and nervous guy who doesn’t want a corny presentation, here’s our selection of London’s must-see mixes.

Vermuteria

    (Vermuteria)

(Vermuteria)

One thing that seems to push ambivalent Negroni to become full-fledged obsessive is the ability to tinker. The classic recipe is one for a reason, but, Campari aside, modifications with gin or vermouth can make all the difference. This is where Vermuteria comes into play: as the name attests, this is a vermouth bar – one with excellent food, as it happens – which means you can make substitutions and changes until your heart is satisfied, yours curiosity is sated and, well, until your mind is a little uncertain. Enjoy, though the house offering, made with East London Liquor Company gin and their own red, is a wise (ish) way of putting in £ 10 to use. Indeed, fair prices seem to be a hallmark of the place; there’s plenty of it under a tenth and even vintage mixes, made from rare and hard-to-find bottles, don’t go much above £ 25.

38/39 Coal Drops Yard, N1C, vermuteria.cc

The coral room

First of all, The Coral Room proves that pairing your drink with the decor is a winning combination. It’s nearly impossible not to order a Negroni when entering the warm, orange-red ambiance of this stylish Bloomsbury Hotel bar, and those who follow suit are well rewarded. Anyway grab your Negroni – and here they like them best with Tanqueray 10, or Boatgin gin – the drink ended up with an ice cube decorated with the bar’s colorful name. If there is, the manager Giovanni Spezziga is a master.

16-22 Great Russell Street, WC1, thecoralroom.co.uk

Quo Vadis

There is no shortage of neon signs in Soho: we can’t guarantee where they all lead, but the one here definitely points towards a good time. Negrons are good at this West End haunt, pleasantly strong and traditionally mixed, but they really perform in the last hours of an early weekend night. Downstairs, it’s fun to sit on the street with them, while on Thursdays and Fridays in the members bar, a gong is sounded at 11:30 pm to mark the start of a Negroni Happy (half hour), during which it all costs just £ 5; this is the difference between reasonably sensible coming home and rushing into the night. It’s so much fun to be misled.

26-29 Dean Street, W1, quovadissoho.co.uk

Ugly

Now, cornered, gun to face, would we swear blindly that this really is one of the best cocktails in town? In truth, we could say that they are slightly watery, but then they are a five. They are still good. And this counts: Brutto is built on principles of conviviality, on the idea that eating out must also mean having fun. This is a place for too many plates of pasta and bottles of wine, and a few negroni have poured in whenever there is a lull in the conversation. No surprise they get 20 liters every week.

35-37 Greenhill rentals, EC1, msha.ke/ ugly

Sea bird

    (David Ellis)

(David Ellis)

A reminder that often the location can be as important as what’s in the glass. At the Seabird, located on the 14th floor of the Hoxton in Southwark, the Negroni is a true progenitor – their preference is for Bombay Sapphire and Martini Rubino – but simply expertly crafted, delightfully generous and perfect for sipping in the beautiful dining room. lunch, with its endless views and vibes. That feeling, of complete relaxation, of forgetting the rest, is exactly what a Negroni is for. Few places evoke it like Seabird does.

40 Blackfriars Road, SE1, seabirdlondon.com

Larry’s

    (David Ellis)

(David Ellis)

Larry’s gets the nod here to realize that while herbal gins and spiny vermouths have their place, sometimes a Negroni should be entirely familiar. This tastes like a Negroni, but the place is set up for, let’s say, no less than three and no more than five. All orange-all Larry’s is made to call a few cocktails and work through the food menu from top to bottom. It’s a place to chat late into the evening, and that’s exactly what Negronis, done right, inspires.

Unit 5, 12-16 Blenheim Grove, SE1, larryspeckham.co.uk

Bar Termini

Soho’s Bar Termini is a warm tribute to the culture of Roman bars and cafes, cocktails accompanied by a very Italian coffee menu (no frappuccino here). Negrons were once the star of their booze offering, served atypically from chilled, premixed bottles in tiny coupette-style glasses (tips hooked, unfortunately, due to how small these portions are, but then cost £ 7.50) . But times change, and so does Termini. Now they just do “Negroni at home” which is simple but does his job. He gets one and then tries the Masala Martini, which is really cool. Termini works wonderfully when treated well; it is a place to take a quick jump, either during the night or on the way back from one.

7 Old Compton Street, W1, bar-termini-soho.com

Via Decano 40

Of course, this would always be on the list – they put one of us on the menu. 40 Dean Street is one of those joyous semi-secrets that make Soho, Soho. For nearly two decades the venue has attracted its loyal crowd – one or two royalty among them, as well as an occasional A-lister – who come for the comforting Italian cuisine, including fresh pasta, as well as the affable welcome and joy. to see owner Nima Safei in full swing, captivating her audience. It’s all affordable too, increasingly a rarity in the city center. Negrons are as classic as they come, unless you order the DVH Ellis; tequila, or preferably mezcal, takes the place of gin. Obviously it is completely shocking and therefore enormously funny. A bit like the restaurant itself.

40 Dean Street, W1, fortydeanstreet.com

Oriole

There’s a world of cocktails to try at Oriole: the downstairs Smithfield bar makes some significant globetrotters on its “Old World”, “New World” and “The Orient” cocktail lists. It’s an off-menu selection, but the Negroni here has its slightly more distant views of the Amalfi Coast, taking a short trip across the Mediterranean to Greece. The typical three-part mix includes a house blend of sweet vermouth, and is joined by a dose of Hellenic-style wine resin, an olive and a slice of burnt orange.

East Poultry Avenue, EC1, oriolebar.com

San Giacomo wild honey

To be clear, one comes here for Anthony Demetre’s show food, the elegance of the service, and the softly whispering room. But the Negroni here is always so damn good, remarkably, enough to wonder what they do to it to taste so clean and at the same time hug rich (I suspect it’s in their homemade vermouth). It’s a Negroni to have in the winter; he is comforting rather than pungent. Demetre is also behind Vermuteria, at the top of this page, so clearly man has a taste for these things. Well, he would have done it: when it opened, he was listed at the top of the menu as “I’m very specific with my Negroni” and while those words are gone, he’ll ask for one and they’ll get confused.

8 Pall Shopping Center, SW1, wildhoneystjames.co.uk

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