On this grey and cold day here in Los Gatos, I’m ready to watch both NFL Conference Championship Games. Since my Niners are not playing I decided to make a very appropriate cocktail because I really wanted a strong Campari base cocktail…So lets make some Boulevardier.

Boulevardier, according to Google, means “a wealthy, fashionable socialite”

A distant cousin of the Negroni, both contain sweet (red) vermouth and Campari but the Boulevardier swaps the usual gin for bourbon, traditionally, or rye, what I often use, and the effect is mellowing, and less intimidatingly bitter, than a Negroni. It needs exactly nothing else to be a finished drink. And it’s nice with a twist of orange or lemon.



Traditionally, the Boulevardier is 1 ounce (1 part) each Campari, sweet red vermouth, and rye whiskey or bourbon, but many versions use 1.25 to 1.5 ounces (1.25 to 1.5 parts) of the latter, and I go even further to 2. (Bourbon is generally more mellow and sweet; rye, slightly more spicy and dry.) It is not a subtle drink. It should definitely be sipped quite slowly. We make it on the rocks, but you can also shake it with ice, strain it, and serve it up. I show it here with an orange peel we like very much (a cherry, and yes, the Luxardo ones are absolutely worth it, is also good) but it’s also good with no garnishes whatsoever.

  • 2 ounces bourbon or rye whiskey
  • 1 ounce red vermouth
  • 1 ounce Campari
  • Ice

In an old-fashioned glass, mix everything and add ice to taste.

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