Is Negroni better with Aperol or Campari?

Answered by Brandon Riddell

When it comes to the debate of whether is better with Aperol or Campari, there is no definitive answer. It largely depends on personal preference and the specific taste profile one is looking for in their cocktail. As an expert sommelier and brewer, I have had the pleasure of tasting both variations and can offer some insights into the differences and qualities of each.

Let's start with Aperol. Aperol is a lighter and less option compared to Campari. It has a lower content and is known for its vibrant orange color. When used in a Negroni, Aperol adds a refreshing and slightly sweeter taste to the cocktail. The bitterness is much milder, allowing the other ingredients to shine through. This makes it a great choice for those who are new to Negronis or prefer a lighter and more approachable drink.

On the other hand, Campari is the classic choice for a Negroni. It has a higher alcohol content and a more intense bitterness. Campari's deep red color and complex flavor profile make it a bold and distinctive ingredient in this cocktail. It adds a robust and bitter kick that is loved by many Negroni enthusiasts. If you enjoy the traditional Negroni experience and appreciate the bitter notes, Campari is the way to go.

To further illustrate the differences, let me share a personal experience. On a warm summer evening, I decided to experiment with both Aperol and Campari Negronis. The Aperol Negroni was incredibly refreshing, with its bright citrusy flavors and a hint of sweetness. It felt like the perfect sipper for a relaxed evening, complementing the warm weather perfectly. On the other hand, the Campari Negroni had a more pronounced bitterness that paired beautifully with the rich and savory flavors of the appetizers I had before dinner. It provided a more robust and complex drinking experience, leaving a lingering bitter finish that I personally enjoy.

The choice between Aperol and Campari in a Negroni ultimately boils down to personal preference. If you're new to Negronis or prefer a lighter and more refreshing cocktail, an Aperol Negroni might be your perfect match. On the other hand, if you're a fan of the classic, bold, and bitter Negroni, Campari is the way to go. I encourage you to try both variations and see which one resonates with your taste buds the most. Cheers!