Photo by Asia Morris.
Negroni Week kicks off today, celebrating the cocktail composed of Campari, gin and sweet vermouth, purported to have been invented by a bartender in Florence, Italy when a thirsty Count Camillo Negroni ordered an Americano, but requested gin in place of the soda.
Three years ago Imbibe Magazine and Campari America kicked off the first worldwide and week-long celebration of the Italian cocktail. Now, Negroni Week 2016 consists of more than 15 Long Beach bars joining in with a barrage of unique beverages to be concocted starting today and lasting through Sunday, June 12.
Here are five Long Beach bars that are participating in Negroni Week this year, each offering a unique variation on the classic Italian cocktail.
This Latin-inspired gastropub, still fairly new to Long Beach, will feature a Negroni Special entitled Up All Night to Get Lucky, with proceeds to go toward AIDS Project Los Angeles (APLA). Known for its creative cocktails, it’s no surprise Padre would pull out all the stops for Negroni Week. With a description not to be tarnished (see below), Padre’s Negroni variation is made with Arette Blanco Tequila, Gin, Campari, Strega, Byrrh Grand Quinquina, Stumphouse Coffee Concentrate, Cherry Wood Smoke.
“The grassy cooked agave flavors are complemented by subtle botanicals, which quickly transitions to an herbal bitterness, and then finishes with a lightly smoked rich coffee citrus and port wine combo,” according to the description.
For more information, visit Padre’s website here.
Cielo at the Sky Room
It’s been nearly a year since the Sky Room rebranded its rooftop bar as Cielo, taking the space with its iconic view of downtown Long Beach and the Pacific ocean in a different direction; wicking off its damp club vibes of the past to embrace a “Spanish flair cuisine” with better food and handcrafted cocktails.
Serving four variations of the traditional Italian apéritif at $9 a pop, for each Negroni sold $3 will be donated to Operation Gratitude, an organization that annually ships care packages to US Service Members deployed overseas. All made with Botanist gin, a Blonde, Black, Brunette and Redhead Negroni are on the menu just Thursday through Sunday (as Cielo is closed Monday through Wednesday).
For more information about Cielo, visit the Facebook page here.
Michael’s on Naples and Chianina Steakhouse
Image courtesy of Christian Justice.
You’ll have to visit Michael’s on Naples to try beverage buff Christian Justice’s Before Negroni, a citrusy, playful take on the classic cocktail using Sipsmith London dry gin, Carpano Bianco, Aperol and fresh lemon juice topped with a grapefruit Aperol foam. For a starkly varying and delicious take on the classic cocktail, walk down the block to Chianina for Kit Skylark’s After Negroni, a rich riff featuring notes of bitter chocolate and coffee.
$1 for every $10 Negroni purchased from either restaurant, whether you order the traditional beverage with Bontanist Gin or one of the variants, will go toward the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society (LLS), the largest voluntary health agency worldwide dedicated to curing leukemia, lymphoma, Hodgkin’s disease and myeloma.
Roxanne’s Cocktail Lounge & Latin Grill
Roxanne’s will offer a barrel-aged house Negroni up-front and a tequila-based Negroni all week long, while on Thursday night, a special Negroni-centered evening will take place behind closed doors in the neighborhood bar’s password-only speakeasy, where four different takes on the cocktail will be offered thanks to bartender Corbin Brown’s creative prowess.
A tequila-based Negroni, along with White, Rum and tropical citrusy variations will be offered in support of Inspire Artistic Minds (IAM), a nonprofit organization providing educational opportunity scholarships for artists delving into the food and beverage industry. If you can’t make it to The Exhibition Room on Thursday, the four cocktails will be offered throughout the weekend, as well.
Brown will also be representing Roxanne’s at IAM’s Negroni Week Championship, which he won last year, bringing his Pineapple Negroni to win over hearts and tastebuds. Tickets for the event can still be purchased here, giving the Negroni-curious and the most seasoned aficionado a great night of tasting and voting for one of Negroni Week’s featured charities.
For more information about Roxanne’s visit the website here.
The Stache Bar
The Stache Bar, one of the best 4th Street hole-in-the-walls voted a Best of Long Beach 2015 Food and Drink winner, will donate $1 for every Negroni purchased to Inspire Artistic Minds. Alongside the traditional Negroni, two variations will be served. The first, a refreshing take on the traditional using champagne, and the other, a more spirit-forward cocktail using mezcal.
“Everybody thinks of Campari as a very, very bitter cocktail, we just want to show that it can be other things besides just that,” said Bar Manager Brenden Burley.
For more information about The Stache Bar, visit the Facebook page here.
For a list of all other Long Beach bars participating in Imbibe & Campari’s Negroni Week, click here.