This Campari Tonic Cocktail is an easy and impressive drink with just 3 ingredients! It’s the perfect drink to enjoy anytime – from a hot summer day to a holiday party. It’ll be love at first sip!
Why You’ll Love This Recipe
Simplicity – This Campari cocktail is just 3 ingredients – Campari, tonic water, and orange juice. It’s the perfect recipe for when you don’t want to fuss with complicated cocktails.
Delicious flavor profile – The bitterness of the Campari is balanced perfectly with the bittersweet flavors of the tonic water and orange juice making for a delicious, well-rounded cocktail.
Low ABV – This cocktail is great for those times when you don’t want a super boozy drink. It also makes it perfect for hot summer days when the heat can intensify the effects of alcohol.
What is Campari?
Campari is a popular bitter Italian liqueur that is known as an aperitif or aperitivo. This refers to the social time before dinner meant to enjoy small appetizers and drinks. The word stems from “aperto,” meaning to open or begin, which is the intention of those indulging before dinner. It should be noted that while Campari is similar to its bitter but sweeter cousin, Aperol, they are not the same.
Campari became so popular in Italy that in 1915, the heir to the Campari company, Davide Campari, opened the bar Camparino in Milan. This bar revolutionized the way the red liqueur was served, bringing the idea of the aperitivo to the region and culture. With decor from well-known artisans and artists, Camparino drew large crowds from all over and remains open to this day.
Campari: This liqueur is widely available and can be found in just about any liquor store.
Orange juice: You should always use freshly squeezed juice in cocktails for optimal flavor. If you need to use bottled orange juice, you should definitely opt for one that is 100% juice. Blood orange juice is another great option here.
Tonic water: Fever Tree and Q Mixers are two high-quality tonic waters that are perfect for a Campari Tonic. You can also use a tonic syrup, like Jack Rudy, to flavor plain sparkling water to turn it into a delicious-tasting tonic.
Step 1-2: Add the Campari and orange juice to a cocktail glass filled with ice cubes.
Step 3-4: Top with soda water and garnish with an orange peel, if desired.
Expert Tips and Variations
- If you prefer a sweeter cocktail or a different tonic variation, try using Aperol instead of Campari for an Aperol Tonic. You can also just use a touch of simple syrup to sweeten a Campari Tonic.
- If you prefer a cocktail that is slightly less bitter, you can try swapping tonic water for soda water to make a Campari Soda.
- If you want both a sweeter and much less bitter option, try a Limoncello Tonic.
- For a stronger drink, add a shot of gin for an extra kick, which will give it more of a Negroni vibe.
What pairs well with Campari?
Campari pairs well with bittersweet and citrus flavors. Things like oranges, grapefruits, tonic water, sweet vermouth, gin, etc. make for the best pairings.
How do you store Campari?
Store Campari in a cool, dry place, away from sunlight.
How long does Campari last?
Unopened Campari has a long shelf life and can last for years if stored properly. However, once opened, consume it within 12 months for optimal flavor.
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Campari Tonic Recipe
- 1 ½ ounces Campari
- ½ ounce orange juice (regular or blood orange)
- 3-4 ounces tonic water
- Orange peel for garnish (optional)
- Add the Campari and orange juice to a cocktail glass filled with ice.
- Top with tonic water and garnish with an orange peel, if desired.
- If you prefer a sweeter cocktail, try using Aperol instead of Campari.
- If you prefer a cocktail that is less bitter, you can try swapping tonic water for soda water.
- For a stronger drink, add a shot of gin for an extra kick.