Enjoying a deliciously crafted cocktail is a beautiful thing.
But when that deliciously crafted cocktail is created by your own bare hands after learning from an expert – well, that’s a game-changer.
I had the incredible opportunity to learn how to mix a drink from Michael Cecconi, mixologist and creator of M Squared Spirits, and let’s just say, if this bloggin’ thing doesn’t work out, I know my back up plan.
Crafting a cocktail changes the entire experience of then actually drinking it.
When we were deciding which mixed drink to create, we started with which spirit did we want to work with. Seeing as though I absolutely love mezcal and often drink it straight up with orange slices and Tajin, I voted for tequila’s smokey cousin. From there, it was decided we’d mix up a Mezcal Negroni.
If you’re familiar with the perhaps more traditional Negroni cocktail, it is typically mixed with gin. Actually, I would have never thought in a million years to substitute gin with mezcal in a Negroni, but this is the type of cool stuff you learn when being guided by a pro.
At one point while stirring all of the spirits in my martini shaker, that of which I have actually never used, Michael suggested that I take time to now “be with my drink” and enjoy the stirring process.
Who knew mixing cocktails could be so zen?
Just as zen, is sipping on this deliciously smokey and slightly bitter libation. Now, although this is technically considered an aperitif, I do enjoy drinking this after dinner as I like to believe it helps settle my stomach. Whatever works, right?
Either way, this spin on the Negroni is spectacular and shall be enjoyed all year round. It tastes like it’d be difficult to create, but make no mistake, a small child could whip this bad boy up.
For more on the Mezcal Negroni, visit our IGTV to watch Michael teach me how to make it. We had a blast!
Be sure to follow Michael over at @themobilemixologist. Every weekday he is giving cocktail tutorials (they’re brilliant!) at 8pm CST and every Saturday at 1 pm CST he and his son show how to make an innovative children’s drink and treat.
- 1 ounce mezcal
- 1 ounce sweet vermouth
- 1 ounce Campari
- 1 orange
- First thing first! Fill the glass you will be using with ice and let it chill while you make your cocktail. OR have it in the freezer for 20-30 minutes. This cocktail is served straight up - no ice.
- Combine your ingredients into whatever it is you have to create a cocktail. I use a martini shaker, but as Michael pointed out in our video tutorial, you can use absolutely anything! Pour 1 ounce of mezcal, 1 ounce of sweet vermouth, and lastly, 1 ounce of Campari.
- Add ice to your boozy concoction.
- Using a stirrer of some sort (a knife, cocktail stirrer, your finger, etc) slowly stir your ingredients. Take your time and enjoy the meditative process of creating your craft cocktail.
- Time to empty the ice from your glass. Ice be gone and your glass is now chilled. OR retreive one from your freezer.
- Pour your spirits into your cold glass.
- Cut a quarter shape of orange peel, careful not to go past the pith.
- Option A: Rub the zest of the orange around the rim of the glass. Then place the peel into your drink peel side up, like an upside-down canoe.
- Option B: Flame your orange peel! Holding the round peel between your thumb and forefinger with your dominant hand, use your other hand to hold a small flame to the orange peel. Allow the flame to meet the skin for 7-10 seconds, careful not to burn the peel. At about 10 seconds and while the flame is still on the peel, squeeze the peel to produce a burst of flame from the citrus oils! Rub the zest around the rim of the glass then place in the drink, peel side up, like an upside-down canoe. Voila!
- Sit back, relax, and enjoy!