The ever-popular Negroni cocktail came into being in Florence, Italy in 1919 when Count (and cowboy!) Camillo Negroni asked his bartender, Fosco Scarselli, to fortify his favorite cocktail—the Americano—by substituting gin for the usual soda water. Nearly 100 years later, the drink is deservedly popular and is fêted annually with Negroni Week.
Launched in the summer of 2013 as both a celebration of the renowned cocktail and an effort to raise money for charitable causes around the world, this year’s fourth annual multi-city Negroni Week is slated for June 5-11. Sponsored by Campari and Imbibe, participating bars and restaurants will rally together to donate $25 or more from Negroni-related sales during the week to a list of worthy charities from around the world, which range from Susan G. Komen to the USBG’s Helen David Relief Fund for bartenders affected by breast cancer. To date, nearly $900,000 has been raised for charities around the world and this year Campari itself will donate $75,000.
At press time, 17 Las Vegas venues have already signed up, each of which will enlist its mixologists to offer the classic cocktail (Campari, gin and vermouth, often in equal parts) or to transform it into a unique house creation. For example, at Momofuku, the Negroni Week special will be a mixture of 1 ounce Plymouth Gin, 1 ounce Campari, ½ ounce Dolin Rouge Sweet Vermouth and ½ ounce Carpano Antica Formula Sweet Vermouth.
For the complete—and growing!—list of participating venues, visit NegroniWeek.com.