Cocktail lovers, your time is now! The ever popular Negroni Week is back from June 1-7 in more than 2,900 bars across the world, from New Orleans to Brazil to Latvia, and right here in our beloved San Diego.
Presented by Campari and Imbibe magazine, Negroni Week (titled "A Drink for your Cause") began in 2013 as a way to recognize the timeless cocktail and contribute to charities around the world. Here are just some of the bars and restaurants that are celebrating and donating here in San Diego:
Bottega Americano: Join them for an ice cream social on their outdoor patio from 2-5 p.m. June 3. Features include homemade mint chip Negroni ice cream cones, and Negroni and orange sorbet sodas. Your first ice cream cocktail of choice will cost $15, and each additional will be $6. Also check out the carnival games and photo booth for fun.
Craft & Commerce: Presenting the Van Dyke, Craft & Commerce uses barrel-aged gin in a Negroni variation, and will give proceeds to Bikers Against Child Abuse, providing aid and safety to abuse victims.
Croce's Park West: Croce's is using star anise as a variation ingredient and as a way to recognize rising stars in music. Their charity is the aptly named Jim Croce Scholarship, aimed toward providing assistance for aspiring musicians.
Cucina Urbana & Enoteca: The wildly successful restaurants will present traditional Negronis, and proceeds will benefit Corazon de Vida, a nonprofit providing aid to orphaned and abandoned children in Baja California.
Fairweather: Tony's Negroni, named after mixologist Anthony Schmidt, takes the Negroni to the tropics. Using the traditional gin and Campari and adding pineapple, lime and guava syrup, this is a must-try on your Negroni week schedule.
Juniper & Ivy: Keeping it traditional with a classic Negroni and experimenting with a variation using coffee liqueur and cinnamon syrup. Their charity is The Seany Foundation, which assists kids, teens and young adults affected by cancer.
Polite Provisions: Adding "a Caribbean twist to an Italian classic," the award-winning bar presents Jamaican Farewell, substituting rum for the traditional gin, with a dash of banana liqueur. Their charity is the Tony Hawk Foundation, which benefits youth by helping provide skate parks.
Noble Experiment: Their Negroni Perfecto imbues the classic cocktail with deeper complexity with both sweet and dry vermouth as well as herbal liqueur. Proceeds will benefit Inspire Artistic Minds, a nonprofit that raises money for scholarships for food and beverage industry professionals, including chefs and bartenders.
Prepkitchen/Whisknladle/Catania: Visit each of the locations for a unique take on the Negroni. Each will prepare a different barrel-aged Negroni with a secret ingredient. Proceeds will go to Redstone, a California-based nonprofit whose mission is to assist nongovernment organizations in the humanitarian sector.
Sycamore Den: Taking Negroni Week to exciting levels, this cocktail hotspot is bursting with events. May 31 is the kickoff with build-your-own Negronis, barrel-aged Negronis, food from newly opened Burnside and live music from Fantino and Miles Wide. Their charity is International Rescue Committee, a nonprofit organization that responds to humanitarian crises worldwide, helping people to survive and rebuild their lives. Throughout the week they will be serving the following Negroni variations concocted by each member of the Sycamore Den team: Rainwater Reale and Mambo Italiani, both with Campari's brethren Aperol, and Set of Skills, Martin Special, and Jabroni Negroni with the timeless Campari.
So get out there and support these wonderful causes, all while enjoying the craft cocktail culture in San Diego! Want to know more? Check out news and info on NegroniWeek.com. And don't forget to use the hashtag #NegroniWeek in all of your Instagrams pics and tweets. Cheers!
With 15 years in the restaurant and beverage industry and more than 700 reviews under her belt, Laurie Delk is a one-stop guide to all things craft beer, wine and spirits. You can follow Delk on Twitter @100beers30days or Instagram @sandiegobeer. Send ideas for featured drinks to email@example.com.