How to Make a White Negroni That Isn’t Yellow

How to Make a White Negroni That Isn’t Yellow

The Negroni is perhaps the most riffed on cocktail in existence. Heck, there is an entire week dedicated to riffing on it. One such riff is the “White Negroni,” which is usually made with the grassier, gentian-forward Suze or Avèze. It’s good, but I don’t know why they call it “white” — it’s bright yellow.

That doesn’t really matter all that much, but there’s a new, colourless, gentian-focused bitter you can use to make a non-yellow, if not technically “white,”Negroni. (I say “not technically white” because a truly white beverage would have to be opaque like milk. Technically.) Luxardo Bitter Bianco features the same herbs and plant parts as Luxardo’s Bitter Rosso, only it’s colourless, not red. I’ve never actually had the Rosso, but this Bianco stuff taste quite similar to Campari, only it’s a little sweeter, a touch more gentian-forward, and has a less-pronounced burnt citrus flavour. Luxardo describes it as a “distilled infusion of bitter herbs and aromatic plants including rhubarb, thyme, and bitter orange,” and — while I do get a bit a rhubarb-like tartness — I did not pick up on the thyme at first.

It’s good. I like it. (Full disclosure: Luxardo sent me this bottle, but it retails for around $40.) If Campari is a little rough for your palate, this bitter is a little less aggressive, though not as friendly as Aperol. But the main point is that it’s delicious when mixed with gin and dry vermouth. The combination results in a Negroni-like beverage that feels a bit more summery than the standard — in fact, I found it much easier to drink than Negronis made with either Campari or Suze — almost too easy. To make this White Negroni that is not in fact yellow, you will need:

  • 30mL London dry gin
  • 30mL Luxardo Bitter Bianco
  • 30mL dry vermouth

Add everything to a stirring glass filled with ice and stir to chill. Strain into a coupe, or over a cube if you prefer, and garnish with a strip of orange zest. Alternatively, you can build everything right in the glass over one big cube, and let the drink dilute in the lowball. That’s how I like mine, but I am quite lazy.

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