Monica Koerschner, left with Katie Hild at Tiger Mountain for the Negroni Week finale party
By Monica Koerschner
Sunday wrapped up Negroni Week, a 7 day, nationwide celebration of all things Negroni that raises money for various local charities. The Negroni is a classic cocktail; the traditional version is comprised of equal parts gin, campari, and vermouth – although bartenders everywhere are making tons of fun variations.
Asheville, being awesome like it is, fully embraced Negroni Week with 14 participating bars and restaurants AND they turned it into a contest. Me and my buddies, being Negroni lovers and fierce competitors, took on the challenge of trying a Negroni at all 14 spots and, since we’re now fully experienced experts, decided to hand out the First Annual Asheville Negroni Awards:
Bull & Beggar – This photo says it all. Yes, it tasted as spectacular as it looks.
Yacht Club – Bringing out the bitterness that makes a Negroni so awesome!
Tiger Mountain – We LOVED, LOVED, LOVED the Negroni slushy made even yummier with a splash of Noble Cherry Cider.
Buffalo Nickel –These guys served a Tequila Negroni that was fantastic!
Rhubarb – This lovely Negroni was served with a house made Rhubarb tonic made by my pal and guest Bartender, Hank.
Most Fun to Watch Being Made
Crow and Quill – Bringing the fire and the perfect classic Negroni!
MG Road – Multiple tasty variations on the Negroni.
Sovereign Remedies – Check out this beautiful Negroni with a strawberry twist. YUM!
Lex 18 – This gem was served with a Negroni soaked ice cube!
Nightbell – Delicious and strong. We loved the carbonated, Negroni-soaked orange slice garnish. Yes, you read that right.
Top of the Monk – Delectable Negroni + a beautiful view. Hard to beat!
Best use of Fruit
The Southern – Strawberry Negroni – healthy and tasty! This was the very last stop of the week & I forgot a photo of the drink (HA). I did get a pic of some fully stamped Negroni Week passports.
Best Food Pairing
Cucina 24 – Phenomenal food plus amazing Negronis! (Special thanks to Donnie Pratt, for donating Cucinas Negroni proceeds to a charity near and dear to my heart, Open Doors of Asheville)
My Personal Favorite
Imperial Life – Kick ass Barrel aged Negroni. Period. GET ONE!
The week culminated with a lively party at Tiger Mountain. I’ll let the photos below explain how killer that was!
Yes, it was a serious fun and ridiculous week! We especially loved meeting and hanging with the bartenders who are so passionate about their craft. BIG thanks to Jasper Adams with Imperial Life for organizing.
Adios Negroni Week, you were EPIC!
Photo credits: Katie Hild, Kasey Hotchkiss, Lauren Jones, Chris Repass, and Tiger Mountain photo booth