Everyone knows that the cocktail known as the Negroni is simply a ginned-up twist on the Americano, which itself is a fizzy watered-down version of the Milano-Torino, that time-honored blend of the bitter Campari (from Milano) and Martini & Rossi, a sweet vermouth from Torino.
Its also popular knowledge that the Negroni owes its name to the hard-drinking Italian count who decided to nix the fizz and add some Gin to the mix.
What is less commonly known is that the Negroni also has a half-brother called the Boulevardier reputedly invented by an American publisher of a Parisian literary magazine of the same name. The Boulevardier swaps in Bourbon for Gin which brings some woody-herbal complexity to the drink.
In one last twist, the Negroni, may actually have been an American invention after all. A recipe recently unearthed from 1895 tells of a legendary Dundorado Cocktail. Apparently, the beverage involved: “one half-jigger of Gin, one half jigger of Italian vermouth and two dashes of Calisaya”. Calisaya is the name bitters derived from Cinchona Calisaya bark (as opposed to Cinchona Officials which is used in Campari.
Today you can find these bitters in Calisaya Liqueur. Crafted by two Italian brothers living in Oregon, artfully imbues the bark with roots, flowers and seville orange extract in a neutral grain spirit.
Mixed up yet? Perfect. Time for a drink.
1 1/2 oz. bourbon
1 oz. Campari
1 oz. sweet vermouth
Stir well with ice in a mixing glass, strain into a chilled glass,
and garnish with an orange slice or lemon twist.
*In France, a Boulevardier is someone who frequents fashionable locales.