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Makes 1 Servings

In Italian, "sbagliato" means "mistake." Supposedly, a bartender grabbed sparkling wine instead of gin as he was making this cocktail, resulting in this happy, delicious mistake.


  • 4 ounces dry Prosecco or other sparkling white wine

  • 1 ounce sweet vermouth

  • ½ ounce Campari

  • Club soda

  • Lime wheel (for serving)

Recipe Preparation

  • Pour Prosecco into an ice-filled large wine or rocks glass. Add vermouth and Campari and top off with club soda. Gently stir together; garnish with lime wheel.


Photos by Ted Cavanaugh

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Garnish: orange peel, grapefruit peel

  1. Combine all ingredients in a mixing glass over ice and stir until chilled.
  2. Strain into a rocks glass over ice.
  3. Garnish with an orange peel and grapefruit peel.

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Recipe Round-Ups

Negroni Sbagliato

  1. In a rocks or lowball glass, add Campari, sweet vermouth and ice.
  2. Top with prosecco or sparkling wine and stir gently to combine.
  3. Garnish with an orange peel.

Get our freshest features and recipes weekly.

By clicking Go, I acknowledge that I have read and agree to the Penguin Random House Privacy Policy and Terms of Use and agree to receive news and updates from PUNCH and Penguin Random House.

Latest Article

Italy’s Lost Aperitivo

A simple mixture of Campari and bitter orangeade, the Cardinale was once the spritz of southern Italy.

How to Make a Sbagliato, the Summer Cocktail That Started as a Mistake

Negronis—those simultaneously sweet and bitter cocktails of gin, Campari, and vermouth—are great and everything, but they tend to pack a bit too much of a punch, especially in the summer. With a heavy pour of grapefruit-leaning Campari, they’re a bitter slap to the tastebuds, and it’s difficult to taste anything after one of them—to think, they’re often enjoyed as a pre-dinner drink!

I’d like to introduce the sbagliato negroni to the party, which is the more lively, less heavy take on the negroni.

Sbagliato is Italian for “mistaken,” and urban legend has it that the cocktail was invented by a sloppy Italian bartender who mistook sparkling wine for gin while creating a negroni. I have a problem with this dubious origin story for several reasons, mainly because, well, wouldn't you be able to tell something was wrong when the gin started bubbling?

Whether the myth is true or not, sparkling wine makes the negroni summer-friendly.

So yeah, the roots are a little shady, but one thing’s definite: by subbing in the sparkling wine, you're making the negroni into an extremely refreshing pre-dinner cocktail. The sbagliato is crisp from the wine's effervescence, a little less bitter and boozy, and it provides the perfect excuse to open some bubbly.

Because there isn't a spirit with a potent alcohol content here, you can think of the sbagliato as a Negroni you can have more than one of. Permission to indulge granted.

In my version, I combine an ounce each of Campari and vermouth in an ice-filled rocks glass, and top everything off with sparkling wine (prosecco's the Italian standard, but you could make an argument for cava, too) before giving it a quick stir. Drop in a quick citrus peel for garnish and you're not just ready to start the party—you're ready to keep the party going.

Sbagliato - Recipes

Where do good drinks come from? Like ideas more broadly, a good drink can come from anywhere. Even from a rookie mistake, as was the case with the Negroni Sbagliato.

In the late 1960s, Italian bartender Mirko Stocchetto moved to Milan and bought Bar Basso, a cocktail bar opened in the 1950s. Stocchetto had worked in the hotel bars of Venice, and got the feeling that Milan’s drinking culture was about to catch fire.

And one night — some say it was 1968, some say 1972, it really doesn’t matter — Stocchetto inadvertently created the Negroni Sbagliato.

It’s a situation familiar to any bartender worth his or her bitters: you’re busy, people want their drinks, you’re in the weeds you’re trying to economise every little movement you make. You shave a second off here, another there, each hand performing different tasks, and you bob and weave behind the bar, bouncing off the bartender beside you. When you’re at your best, there’s no thinking, you just do — it’s all muscle memory.

That’s how I imagine the birth of Negroni Sbagliato went down. Stocchetto has an order for a Negroni, and as he’s pulling the ingredients together he instinctively reaches for the gin — he doesn’t need to look for it because the gin is always where it is. He grabs it and pours it in with the other ingredients.

Except this time — this one time — the gin is not where it ought to be. Prosecco is in its place, and it’s prosecco that Stocchetto pours into the Negroni.

Thing is, there’s an idea there. This mistaken Negroni — sbagliato means mistaken in Italian — this Sbagliato Negroni, if you will? It’s good.

The Negroni Sbagliato is essentially a Spritz style of drink. The Campari lends bitterness and grounded earthiness to the glass the vermouth gives a little sweetness and adds complexity and the prosecco lengthens the drink, waking it with effervescence.

But where the Negroni Sbagliato differs from many a Spritz is that the Sbagliato has gravitas. Other Spritzes lack consequence — the Aperol Spritz, for instance, is a fine drink on a hot summer afternoon but lacks the depth and interest for year round drinking. The Negroni Sbagliato stands up in the summer and in the colder months of the year. Its flavour profile — the bitterness and the herbs and botanicals — is one for the grown ups in the room.

One caveat, however: just because you’ve thrown out the gin in a Negroni for prosecco doesn’t mean that this drink doesn’t have some alcoholic heft Campari still clocks in at 25% ABV, vermouth around 15 percent, and when spritzed with wine, this is not a low alcohol option.

If you are looking to keep the Negroni flavour, but want to dial down the alcohol, switch the prosecco out for soda water. You’ll have yourself an Americano, one of the world’s great aperitifs.

In this negroni cousin, the gin is replaced with rye whiskey. Get the recipe for Old Pal » Ingalls Photography

Light, orangey Lillet Blanc and fresh lemon juice brighten a springlike twist on the Negroni. Tarragon and tart, hibiscus-based Burlesque Bitters from Bittermens add floral, herbaceous notes. Get the recipe for Pink Negroni » Zoe Schaeffer

Nigella Lawson’s Favorite Cocktail Is Perfect for Summer

It’s finally, finally starting to feel like spring out there, and that means it’s almost outdoor-dining season. Or maybe we should call it Nigella Lawson season, because her new show, At My Table, features one of the most gorgeous alfresco dining setups I’ve ever seen, with a walled garden full of twinkly lights and a heavy wooden table big enough to seat 20 if they squeezed in. (OK, it’s a TV studio, but so is the White House on Scandal, and you can’t convince me Olivia Pope isn’t real.)

Summer dinner party season requires a roster of good cocktail recipes, and according to Good Housekeeping UK, Nigella’s go-to drink is a cinch for parties. In a recent Twitter Q&A, a fan asked her for her favorite cocktail, and she reported that her favorite drink is a twist on the classic Negroni called a Negroni Sbagliato.

A classic Negroni is made with equal parts Campari, red vermouth, and gin, but the “Sbagliato” version switches the gin for sparkling wine. It’s an effervescent blend of sweet and bitter that’s perfect for sipping outdoors when you’re relaxing in Italy, or anytime you just want to pretend you’re doing that (which is most times for me).

“Sbagliato” means “bungled,” and legend holds the Negroni Sbagliato was born at the legendary Bar Basso in Milan when a bartender accidentally poured Prosecco into a Negroni instead of gin, and the mistake turned out to be a fizzy delight. (Adding Champagne to things is rarely a bad idea.)

Nigella appears to make her “bungled Negronis” by the batch, suggesting that a person take one bottle of Prosecco and add 1 1/3 cups of Campari and 3/4 cup of very good red vermouth. That’d be very convenient for groups, because you could make it all at once and pour it out for guests, or even put it in a punch bowl.

Depending on personal tastes, you can vary the proportions of a Negroni Sbagliato dramatically. Nigella seems to like hers on the bitter side, with more Campari than vermouth, while other recipes call for equal parts of all three ingredients, like in a regular Negroni. Experimentation is clearly in order — good thing it’s the season for it!

How to Make a Sbagliato Cocktail, the Spritzy Twist on a Negroni

Bright scarlet and just the right amount of bitterness, the Negroni is a tried and true classic cocktail. This Italian beverage, which recently celebrated its 100th anniversary, is made with just three ingredients&mdashequal parts of Campari, gin, and vermouth. The Negroni is so popular that at least a dozen other drinks have been inspired by it. One of those drinks was never really meant to happen at all&mdashbut we thank our shiny red stars that it did because this it&rsquos that special. Meet the Sbagliato: a low-ABV, fizzy version of the Negroni, made with prosecco instead of vermouth. So, what makes this bubbly beverage so great? &ldquoThe Sbagliato is a light, pleasant, and low-ABV cocktail that&rsquos perfect for consumers who are new to Italian red bitters and looking for a less spirit-forward option as they explore the category,&rdquo says Anne Louise Marquis, portfolio brand ambassador for Campari America. Because there are only three ingredients in the drink, it&rsquos important to choose high-quality ones. Marquis recommends looking for &lsquovermouth di Torino,&rsquo which means that it hails from the Turin region of Italy and was produced with traditional methods and ingredients.

Watch the video: Negroni Sbagliato Cocktail. Jamie Oliver u0026 Giuseppe Gallo