When he first whipped this drink up in 1927, Harry McElhone of Harry’s New York Bar in Paris wasn’t reinventing the wheel, just the Negroni. McElhone swapped out gin for American whiskey, resulting in a more rounded and subtle sip. In Harry’s ABC of Mixing Cocktails, the legendary barman pegged the idea to swap the base spirits on one of his regular customers, a young literary magazine editor named Erskine Gwynne. His publication, as you may have already guessed, was called The Boulevardier.
Mix it Up
You can play around with the aromatics here by adding bitters, and interplay between bourbons and ryes for different flavors. For a boozier drink, add 1.5 oz of whiskey rather than having all equal parts. The drink can also be served in an Old Fashioned glass over a large ice cube if desired.
There are numerous not-quite-definitive histories of this wildly popular aperitif. We’re partial to the one Gaspare Campari created in 1860 at his cafe in Milan, Italy. This light, refreshing, low-alcohol drink (it’s a Negroni without the gin) was originally called a Milano-Torino, but was renamed during Prohibition to appeal to American expats...