The Negroni Sbagliato, also known as the “wrong Negroni” or Negroni Spritz, is a twist on the classic Negroni cocktail. Originating in Milan, this lighter-tasting version of the classic is refreshing and delicious for fans of bubbly drinks!
If you enjoy Italian cocktails and spirits and you are looking for more great cocktails, you might want to also check out my Pink Rosé Negroni Sbagliato, Campari Soda, Limoncello Spritz, or Negroni Sour.
Why You’ll Love This Recipe
- It strikes a perfect balance between the bitterness and sweetness of a traditional Negroni.
- It replaces gin with prosecco for a lighter and less boozy cocktail.
- It can be served on the rocks or straight up in a champagne flute.
What is a Negroni Sbagliato?
Regular Negroni cocktails are a classic Italian libation with equal parts gin, sweet vermouth, and bitter Campari. The Italian word “Sbagliato” literally means “wrong.” A bartender invented the Negroni Sbagliato in Milan, Italy, in the 1970s.
It is said to have been concocted when the bartender, Mirko Stocchetto, working at Milan’s Bar Basso, accidentally reached for the prosecco, an Italian sparkling wine, instead of gin while mixing up a classic Negroni. If you like Negronis without gin in general, be sure to also check out my Vodka Negroni.
The Negroni sbagliato recipe was then born. The happy accident of a bubbly drink became a popular alternative to the standard Negroni cocktail and found its way into the heart of cocktail lovers everywhere.
You may have come across Negroni Sbagliato cocktails on social media thanks to viral TikTok of House of Dragon star, Emma D’arcy (who plays Princess Rhaenyra Targaryen), announcing in an interview that their favorite drink is a “Negroni…sbagliato…with prosecco in it” when co-star Olivia Cooke (who plays Queen Alicent Hightower) asks Emma what’s their drink of choice.
Because of its similarities to an Aperol Spritz, the Negroni Sbagliato cocktail could also be considered a Negroni Spritz. For another gin-based spritz, try my Bramble Gin Spritz.
The ingredients for this easy recipe could not be simpler. To make a Negroni Sbagliato, you’ll need the following ingredients:
A bitter Italian aperitif made of herbs and spices, Campari is enjoyed on its own or in cocktails before dinner. The bittersweet, citrusy flavor of the Campari is accompanied by notes of cinnamon and cherry, making it an acquired but beloved taste for many.
If this bitter liqueur is too bitter for you, you can swap the sharp Campari out for Aperol, which is a bit more mellow and sweeter but still packs a complex bitter orange flavor. I did this in my Aperol Negroni recipe.
Sweet vermouth, or vermouth Rosso (red vermouth), is an Italian wine fortified with botanicals. Through fortification, vermouth gets a darker red color and higher alcohol content than non-fortified wine and is typical as an ingredient in cocktails such as the Negroni. Vermouth paired with prosecco makes for great cocktails like this Sweet Vermouth Spritz or the Martini Bianco Spritz.
Effervescent prosecco is an Italian sparkling and semi-sparkling white wine made from the Glera grape varietal. This fruit forward wine is typically dry but can have a slightly sweet flavor due to the green apple, pear, and honeysuckle flavor profile.
Orange Twist or Wheel
Commonly found in the Negroni, the orange twist is a standard garnish to accompany the bittersweet orange undertones in the Sbagliato. In my version, I used a dehydrated orange wheel.
How to Make This Recipe
To make this classic Italian cocktail, you’ll need to:
Steps 1 + 2: Add Campari and sweet vermouth to a mixing glass with ice.
Steps 3 + 4: Stir well with a bar spoon. Place a cocktail strainer over the mixing glass and pour it into an old fashioned glass with ice or a champagne flute.
Steps 5 + 6: Finish the cocktail by topping it off with prosecco and adding an orange wheel or peel for garnish.
You can use a 1:1:1 ratio as this recipe calls for, or change the amounts depending on your preference. For example, if you find this amount of Campari too bitter, lessen the amount of Campari and add more prosecco. It’s your cocktail, so you can make it however you want!
A little sweet and a little bitter, the uniquely flavored Sbagliato is elevated with a bubbly effervescence from the addition of prosecco.
A classic Negroni is made with sweet vermouth, Campari, and gin, giving it a higher alcohol content than the Sbagliato, which uses prosecco in place of gin. For a less complex and boozy drink, try a Negroni Sbagliato instead of a traditional Negroni.
You can use whichever sweet vermouth you have on hand or prefer, but I like to use Carpano Antica Formula for its high-quality, smooth vanilla flavor and unique aroma.
Related Recipes to Try
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Negroni Sbagliato (Negroni Spritz) Recipe
- 1 ½ ounce Campari
- 1 ½ ounce Sweet vermouth
- 1 ½ ounce Prosecco sparkling wine
- Orange twist or orange wheel for garnish optional
- Combine Campari and sweet vermouth in a mixing glass with ice. Stir well.
- Strain into a cocktail glass filled with ice.
- Top with prosecco.
- Garnish, if using.
- You can use a 1:1:1 ratio as this recipe calls for, or change the amounts depending on your preference. For example, if you find this amount of Campari too bitter, lessen the amount of Campari and add more prosecco. It’s your cocktail, so you can make it whatever you want!
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