Summer Drinking, Part 2

negroni
Last summer we chatted about Pimm’s Cups and a list of things I wanted to do, feel, eat, and read during those few short months.  But by its very nature, summer shouldn’t warrant a list: it’s a time when lists should ideally be thrown out the window and a little bit of whimsy should take the reigns. But I know so many of you can relate to the way in which weeks and months can whoosh on by and before you know it, peaches are out of season and the days are getting shorter. And for that reason, I tend to make summer lists.  So here we have this year’s version. I so encourage you to make your own and share one or two or all of them here. I’d love to hear yours. Truly.

Make: homemade popsicles. Lots of them (how about a Boozy Banana?)

Get: a few herbs for the window sill and not kill them.

Read: Jennifer Egan’s new book , and finally get around to Kim Severson’s Spoon Fed.

Cook: from Alice Hart’s Vegetarian. Bake from Breakfast, Lunch, Tea: The Many Little Meals of Rose Bakery.

Learn: more about using shrubs (tart, fruity syrups)  in cocktails.

Watch: the sunset from Tilden Park.

Bake: Tres Leches Cake, one of my favorite cakes and something I have yet to make in my own kitchen.

Drive: up to Tahoe for a  girls weekend. Much-needed. Much-anticipated.

Beat: Sam at Tennis. Also much-anticipated.

Visit: Della Fattoria (finally!) I can’t believe I haven’t yet been up to this sweet family-run Petaluma bakery.

So I’m heading out of town in a few days for Seattle and then to continue on to visit my family for the July 4th holiday at my mom’s cabin on Lake George. Here there will be little internet, no cell service, lots of dock lounging, reading books, eating real breakfasts, drinking wine on the porch with my grandma and running the country roads with my sister Zoe.

And speaking of drinking with my grandma on the porch, here’s a cocktail she introduced me to probably about four years ago at a chain restaurant in Naples, Florida. A bunch of family were gathered and we were going out for a big seafood dinner after a hot day at the beach; there was a bit of a wait, so we squeezed into the bar where most of our clan ordered a glass of wine or a vodka/tonic. My grandma broke the trend and ordered a Negroni, insisting that I try it. Now this is a major drink. It is a drink for people who like to taste their booze, who often order doubles when they go out, people like my Grandma Marge — and me.

But it’s not my intention to scare you away from the Negroni. It’s quite wonderful, especially in the summer.  A little bitter from the Campari, balanced nicely by the sweet Vermouth and cut with a spalsh of gin (I love  Hendrick’s lately. Love.) If you like Americanos, the Negroni is its stronger, burlier cousin — essentially replacing the soda water with gin. The Negroni was designed for summer porches, stoops, or comfy chairs. And so, I’m ushering in this Summer’s List with one and with a lot to look forward to. Momentum and excitement. Longer days and good news. So it’ll be quiet around here for just a bit but I’ll miss you and — who knows– maybe I’ll have a chance to post some photos in between now and then. While away, I will be participating in Pie Day on July 5th. Have you heard of it? Join us! Make a pie! And we’ll chat about it back here in a few weeks. At that time, I’ll have some new Marge developments to share with you, too (Hint: granola).

Classic Negroni

Classic Negroni

  • Yield: 1 cocktail
  • Total time: 5 mins

Ingredients

1 Part Gin
1 Part Sweet Vermouth
1 Part Campari
Ice Cubes
Orange peel, for garnish

Instructions

Fill your favorite cup with chunky ice cubes. Old-fashioned glasses are traditional here, but any short, squatty cup will do. Combine equal parts of the above ingredients over the ice, and garnish with orange peel.  Stir vigorously and enjoy.

Comments

  1. Stephanie

    Dude, I just had my first Negroni LAST NIGHT! And loved it, loved. Most excellent, having this recipe. Thank you!

  2. Chez Us

    I love the Negroni. One of our favorites; it is definitely not for all, we learned at a dinner party, where that was the cocktail of the hour. Hmm... things I want to do this summer, besides hit Tahoe!!?? Well, I need to work on putting that list to paper ... mental now!

  3. Danielle

    The Tahoe plan is on my list too, as is pie-making, turning some of my favorite spirits into iced treats (apart from cocktails) and stone fruit. Lots and lots of stone fruit.

  4. tea_austen

    Your photos are making me swoon. Sweet summer swoon.

    Now skedaddle on up here, will you, so we can have a drink together!

  5. Daniel

    I love a good Negroni! Replace the vermouth with Punt e Mes if you can find it and throw in a little more gin. It's a bit more intense and Campari-ey, and SO good.

  6. Anne Zimmerman

    Oh, Megan! Our shared love of negronis is a great contribution to an already beautiful friendship. Let's have one (2?) together in July!

  7. Nicole

    That's interesting, I don't like boozy drinks, but I love the Negroni. I just made my first one of the summer last night.
    I'm also participating in pie day. I'm dying to make one of the Baked Alaska Pies from Jeni's Splendid Ice Cream.

    1. megang

      Ahhh! I have yet to try any of Jeni's Splendid Ice Creams but I hear they're fantastic. Love to hear about/see which pie you choose....

  8. Molly

    For my summer list, I'm hoping to learn how to jam and pickles things properly. Also, I LOVE Hendricks, too. It always does the trick on sticky summer nights.

  9. Janet

    Oh! Love this. I would like to participate in most of this list, please.

    Let's drink these in Tahoe. And I still have the Pimms I brought back on my last trip we'll have to break out!

    Have such a great time on your trip(s)!

  10. El

    Writing a list is a really good suggestion. I never do it and always regret it mid-winter. Thanks for the tip, I'll do it today.

  11. Mary

    I would like one now. Have a great vacay! Btw: feel free to continue on this theme: summer drinking part 3, 4...

  12. Adriana

    I have made a summer list too! The biggest one is the list of books. There's about... 15? I'm 3 down! and visiting Seattle is another one of the milestones. Yay for summer cocktails! Have a great fourth of July!

    1. megang

      Books + Seattle sound pretty darn good to me, Adriana. Let me know when you go and I can give you a few good tips of places to visit. Happy 4th to you, too!

  13. Kimberley

    I love the negroni. And I love your list. More than any other season, I always make lists of the things that I want to do each summer. This is probably the best kind of list ever created.

  14. Jacqui

    Negroni is first up on this weekend's to-do list. :)

  15. kickpleat

    I love a negroni! The bitterness is perfect and your list is too. I read Goon Squad and loved it. Hooray for lists.

  16. Brian @ A Thought For Food

    You have listed two of my favorite summer cocktails in a single post. When I thought you couldn't top the Pimm's Cup (because those rock) you brought out the Negroni... keep me far away from those, because I will drink the whole pitcher.

  17. A.J.

    The Negroni as you have it (perfectly balanced) is incredibly lovely. I think of it as the Wonder Woman of drinks, thanks to its balanced nature and underlying strength--following up the Martini as Superman and the Manhattan as Batman.

    1. megang

      Thanks for the comment, A.J. I love the analogy (so true).

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