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A rum negroni is a simple-to-make twist on the classic that is perfect for rum lovers. Dark, spiced rum pairs wonderfully with bitter Campari and sweet vermouth to make a cocktail you'll love sipping!
If you've ever wondered if you can make a negroni with rum, the answer is a resounding yes! This rum negroni variation is a wonderful twist on the classic. The sweet and lightly spiced flavor of rum plays so well in a negroni that you may find you like this one the best.
The rum actually softens the intensity of the negroni so if you're on the fence about this bitter cocktail, this variation may be the one for you. But even if you're a big-time fan of the classic (like us!) you'll love this rum twist.
A dark rum negroni is a wonderfully simple cocktail made with only three ingredients – plus a garnish!
- Dark rum – In recipe testing, we found that dark, spiced rum holds up best to the bitter Campari flavor. If you have a few different kinds of rum in your liquor cabinet, experiment with using a different one each time. Each rum will add its own unique flavor to the drink.
- Campari – This is the bitter liqueur that is the star of every negroni.
- Sweet vermouth – We often make a negroni with an inexpensive sweet vermouth, but you will taste the difference with a top shelf bottle.
- Orange peel – Adding a slice of orange peel to your rum negroni takes it over the top and adds to the experience every time you take a sip – you can really smell the orange! We've garnished the drink in the pictures with an orange peel rosette and torched it with a lighter, which adds an extra element to the cocktail. But even a simple slice of orange peel works great.
How to make a rum negroni
- Prep the garnish. If you're making an orange peel rosette, peel a long strip of orange peel with a vegetable peeler – make it as long as you can. Then roll it up and stick a cocktail skewer through it to hold it together. For extra points, take a lighter and singe the top of the rosette. Keep it simple: slice a small piece of orange peel for the garnish.
- Mix the cocktail. Add some ice and the ingredients to a cocktail shaker or a jar and stir until it's nice and cold.
- Serve. Now put a large ice cube (or a few small ones) into a glass and pour in your rum negroni. Top it with the garnish you made and enjoy it right away.
While the undisputed garnish for a negroni is orange, you can get creative and present it in different ways. Here are a few ideas:
- A thin orange slice or wedge.
- A strip of orange peel, trimmed to make it look pretty, if you'd like.
- A dehydrated orange wheel.
- A long, curly orange peel twist.
- Or go for an orange peel rosette as we've shown in the pictures!
Do I need a big ice cube?
A large ice cube will melt slowly so you can keep your drink cold without diluting it. But if you only have smaller ice cubes, go ahead and use them instead. Avoid filling your glass with ice, just add 2 or 3 small cubes. These are the large ice cube molds that we use.
Can I use white rum?
While we found that the bolder taste of dark rum held up better to the strong flavors of Campari and sweet vermouth, you can absolutely go ahead and use light (white) rum.
Is there an alternative to Campari?
Campari is the bitter liqueur that gives this rum negroni its classic taste. If you find that it's too bitter, try using Aperol instead.
What is a rum negroni called?
We wish we had an answer for you with a super fun name. But the truth is, a rum negroni is simply called a rum negroni.
- 1 ounce dark rum
- 1 ounce Campari
- 1 ounce sweet vermouth
- Burnt orange peel (to serve)
- Cut a long strip of orange peel with a vegetable peeler. Roll up the peel and then stick a cocktail skewer through it to hold it together. Use a lighter to singe the edges. (You can also cut a smaller strip of orange peel, singe it slightly, and drop it into the glass.)Burnt orange peel
- Fill a cocktail mixer half full with ice. Add the dark rum, Campari, and sweet vermouth to the cocktail mixer and stir until chilled.1 ounce dark rum, 1 ounce Campari, 1 ounce sweet vermouth
- Place a large ice cube into a rocks glass and pour the rum negroni over the top.
We have thoroughly tested this recipe for accuracy. However, individual results may vary. See our full recipe disclosure here.