RYAN’S TABLE BY Ryan Tatsumoto
For the past five years, Imbibe magazine and Campari have teamed up during the first week of June to celebrate Negroni Week, a time when restaurants and bars worldwide raise money for various charities by toasting the aperitif that was created in the early 1900s. The first Negroni Week, in 2012, raised barely $100,000 for charity. Last year’s event raised over $400,000, bringing the five-year total to just under $1 million. And although the negroni is my favorite cocktail, it’s doubly satisfying to know that my purchase is benefiting a charity.
What’s a Negroni?
There are many stories relating to the creation of the negroni — the most popular one is that it was created in 1919 at the Caffe Casoni in Florence, Italy. Count Camillo Negroni is said to have asked bartender Fosco Scarselli to strengthen his favorite cocktail at the time, an Americano consisting of equal parts of Campari and sweet red vermouth with a splash of sparkling water and garnished with a lemon peel. Scarselli substituted the sparkling water with gin, but instead of simply adding a splash of gin, he added it in equal parts with the Campari and sweet red vermouth and then garnished it with an orange peel.