Sam Horwitz's Classic Cocktail Compendium

(With photos)


Stir all of the ingredients with ice and strain into a lowball glass with a single large cube or sphere of ice. Garnish with an orange peel.

Dry Negroni

The traditional Negroni is an easy to remember 1∶1∶1 ratio of ingredients and in a pinch, this can’t go wrong. However, it can sometimes taste too cloying. If this is the case, try reducing the Campari and vermouth each to ¾ fluid ounce.

Negroni Highball

Serve in a highball or collins glass and top with sparkling water or soda water in an approximate 1∶1 ratio, or to taste. May be garnished with an orange slice rather than a peel.


Skip the gin and serve in a highball or collins glass, topped with sparkling water or soda water. Garnish with a lemon peel. For a drier, less alcoholic drink, I prefer to substitute the Campari with Aperitivo Cappelletti.

French Negroni

Also known as a “white Negroni” or a “blond Negroni,” this drink swaps the red and brown Italian ingredients for transparent and straw-or-yellow-colored French ones. The Campari is substituted with a gentian apéritif such as Suze or Salers and the Italian vermouth is substituted with a vermouth blanc or any other blanc or bianco aromatized wine. I prefer Suze for this drink as it is sweeter and more Campari-like. It also makes the drink bright yellow, mirroring the bright red of the Negroni. Garnish with a lemon peel.


An Americano but with the ingredients of a French Negroni. I have no idea if anyone ever actually named this drink the way I have, but it’s quite good and I couldn’t pass up the opportunity for a pun. I prefer Salers over Suze for this drink, as it’s drier and less alcoholic.


Replace the gin with 1½ fluid ounces of bourbon or rye.

“Old Pal”

Replace the gin with rye and the Italian vermouth with French vermouth.


Replace the gin with 1½ fluid ounces of reposado tequila. Cut the Campari to ½ fluid ounce. Replace the Italian vermouth with a 50∶50 mixture of Italian vermouth and French vermouth. Garnish with a lemon peel.

Jungle Bird

Replace the gin with 1½ fluid ounces of dark, strongly flavored rum. Reduce the Campari to ¾ fluid ounce. Skip the Italian vermouth and instead add 1½ fluid ounces of pineapple juice, ½ fluid ounce of fresh lime juice, and ½ fluid ounce of demerara gum syrup.

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