On a recent trip to Seattle, a friend introduced us to something new, two things actually: giant ice cubes and the Boulevardier Cocktail. A giant ice cube melts much slower than its dice-sized counterparts, keeping your drink cold longer without watering it down. And the Boulevardier is a riff on the Negroni, swapping bourbon for gin.
Classic Negronis are made with a simple 1:1:1 ratio of gin, Campari and sweet vermouth and I’ll never forget how we came to love them.
We arrived in Venice, Italy with suitcases full of long sleeve shirts, sweaters and jeans; it was September after all. But the weather had other plans – heat and humidity that demanded shorts, sandals and t-shirts. It was during that first week of our trip that we discovered both the Negroni and the Campari Spritz. In the late afternoon (and sometimes not so late), you would find us at a table outside, people watching and sipping one of these refreshing cocktails. Okay, sometimes we had beer, but you get the idea. 😉
At home, on a hot summer evening that calls for a cocktail, you’re most likely to find us sipping the Ultimate Gin and Tonic. But we liked these cocktails well enough to add them to the rotation. I thought we had a full drink repertoire, but the Boulevardier is a worthy addition. It’s just as refreshing as the Negroni, but a little less bitter – smooth, balanced.
Many recipes call for 1 ounce of bourbon, which coincides with the classic Negroni ratio, but I agree with Michael Ruhlman that 1.5 ounces of bourbon makes a tastier cocktail. Some add a lemon twist, which is perfectly delicious, but I prefer a high quality maraschino cherry (or two).
- 1.5 ounces bourbon
- 1 ounce Campari
- 1 ounce sweet vermouth
- lemon twist or maraschino cherries for garnish
- Pour bourbon, Campari and sweet vermouth into a rocks glass with ice, or one giant ice cube. Stir to combine.
- Garnish with lemon twist or maraschino cherries.