Frozen or Traditional Negronis? Why Not Both!

 Kel's frozen NegroniGin-based cocktails are rarely on my radar, probably because the first time I ever got sick from drinking liquor was when I sneaked some of my grandparents’ Gilbey’s gin when I was a senior in high school. While Mamma and Pampa had impeccable taste in so many things, obviously their gin of choice was not one of them. It took more than a decade for me to try gin again, and even now I drink it sparingly and almost always in the heat of the summer.

I recently found a small, unopened bottle of Tanqueray in the back of our liquor cabinet that I had on hand for my father-in-law (who loves a nice gin martini), the last time he visited for Christmas two years ago. It was during a recent heatwave and I decided to make some frozen Negronis as suggested by a recipe that came up on one of my newsfeeds. I had tried a traditional Negroni several years ago on the suggestion of my then supervisor (and fellow foodie) Ken and actually liked it.

A traditional Negroni is made with gin, Campari (a bitter liqueur obtained from the infusion of fruit and herbs in alcohol and water) and red Vermouth (which is sweet), garnished with orange slices. Since I couldn’t easily locate the recipe I had originally seen for the frozen version of this drink, I decided to improvise and just add some blood orange sorbet (on sale, of course) and ice to the traditional recipe, put it in the blender, and keep my fingers crossed. Great decision and excellent frozen cocktail, much different and a nice change from a typical frozen daiquiri or margarita. Yum-O!

Kel's refreshing frozen Negronis

If you’re a gin lover, more than likely you already appreciate a traditional Negroni, so go ahead and give this frozen version a try – you’ll be glad you did! And if you’re new to Negronis, give both a try and decide which one is your favorite – it may come down to the time of year. And by the way, chilled glasses keep your frozen Negroni colder longer. But whatever you do, don’t skimp on the brand of gin. Just don’t. Just don’t.

Traditional Negroni Ingredients (serves 2)

Kel's traditional Negroni ingredients

  • 2 ounces Campari
  • 2 ounces good Gin
  • 2 ounces red (rosso) Vermouth
  • Orange slices
  • Mint leaves (optional)


Fill a rocks glass with ice. Add the Campari, gin and vermouth. Gently stir. Garnish with orange slice and mint.

Kel's Cafe Traditional Negroni

Frozen Negroni ingredients (serves 2)

Kel's frozen Negroni ingredients

  • 2 scoops blood orange sorbet
  • 2 ounces Campari
  • 2 ounces good Gin
  • 2 ounces red (rosso) Vermouth
  • 2 cups ice
  • Orange slices
  • Mint leaves (optional)


Place the first 5 ingredients in a blender and mix on high for several minutes until smooth. Seriously smooth, with no crunchy ice in the mix.

Blending Kel's frozen Negroni

Pour the frozen Negroni into a couple of glasses (I used a martini glass to be fancy for the blog, but a Collins glass, wine glass, or even a champagne glass will do the trick) and garnish with orange slices and mint leaves.

Kel's Cafe Frozen Negroni

Enjoy, and please remember to drink and drive responsibly. In other words, don’t drive if you’ve been drinking.

Bon appétit!

Eat, drink and be merry!

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