Variations and Substitutions
The Aperol Negroni does call for very exact ingredients, but there's still the possibility of experimenting with and swapping ingredients.
- Sample different types of gin--Plymouth, Old Tom, London dry, and genever--to find the one that works best for your Aperol Negroni.
- A non-name brand aperitivo liqueur can be also be used, such as Luxardo Aperitivo Liqueur, but don't confuse this with Luxardo or maraschino liqueur, which is a very different flavor.
- Different brands of sweet vermouth can affect the taste of the cocktail. Experiment with different styles and brands, but be sure to stick with sweet vermouth and avoid any dry vermouths.
- Although the Aperol Negroni uses three equal parts of ingredients, explore different options such as gin forward or Aperol forward, using 1½, ¾, ¾ proportions.
The Aperol negroni might use an orange slice for a garnish. However, don't feel limited by this.
- Use a classic Negroni garnish of an orange peel.
- An orange twist, ribbon, or coin are also great options.
- Try an orange wedge or wheel, as well.
- Swap the orange flavors for lemon. Do so with a lemon peel, ribbon, or coin as well as wheel, wedge, or slice.
- You can also use lemon and orange as a garnish together; consider two intertwined citrus ribbons or a lemon peel with an orange wheel.
- A dehydrated citrus wheel takes a traditional garnish from classic to contemporary.
About the Aperol Negroni
From its inception in 1919, the classic Negroni has spawned dozens of variations, from drastic to slight. The Aperol Negroni falls on the more modest side of variations. With just one ingredient changing and no altered proportions in the recipe, it stays incredibly true to the original.
The classic variation uses Campari, a more bitter apéritif that many people find too bitter or harsh--Campari can truly be an acquired taste, much like Fernet. Both Campari and Aperol are Italian apéritifs. Overall, Aperol has a lower ABV and a more neutral flavor in comparison to the Campari. However, Campari is classified as bitters while Aperol is an apéritif. Aperol's sweeter notes are thanks to the oranges and gentian flowers used in the process, whereas Campari uses more bitter herbs.
A Little Less Bitter
Campari can be offputting for many; its incredibly bitter profile is too strong for some palettes. Aperol, however, is one of the most accessible and user-friendly apéritifs available. So whether you're a veteran of Negronis and you're looking to introduce others to the cocktail, or you are the one searching for an introduction, the Aperol Negroni makes for a warm Negroni welcome.