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The Negroni lesson is in session

How to Make a Spirit-Free Negroni

More like "no-groni"

Neil Patrick Harris is the Founder and Editor-in-Chief of Wondercade. In his spare time he also acts — fairly well, too, as his Tony and Emmy Awards can attest.

April 24, 2023 5:12 pm

How do you make a Negroni into something non-alcoholic, given that every ingredient is booze?

You focus on flavors, or here, the botanicals. Jessica King, the owner at Knoxville’s Brother Wolf Italian aperitivo bar, approximates the bitter and citric notes of the classic cocktail with an assist from Seedlip and Versin, two delicious spirit-free libations brands, as well as her secret weapon: San Pellegrino Sanbitter.

Says King: “With many of the dry citrus and floral notes of the Italian classics like Campari and Select, Sanbitter is delicious on its own or combined with other components. I also add a dash of food-grade orange oil to add sharpness, complexity and depth of flavor.”

Jessica King's Non-alcoholic Negroni

Servings: 1 Negroni

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    1. Stir over ice in a stemless wine glass.

    2. Add an orange slice for garnish, and a splash of soda or some lemon zest — that’s what they do nowadays at Italy’s Caffe Lietta, where Count Camillo ordered the first Negroni more than 100 years ago.

And if you want to add something special, add in a ristretto espresso shot — we stole that idea from Sipsmith Gin’s master distiller, but you can certainly use it for a non-boozy buzz.

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