For all the havoc 2020 wreaked upon us, one indisputably good thing came out of this crazy year — in the absence of bars, canned and bottled cocktails took a huge leap forward, in both quality and availability. If you haven’t yet gotten hip to the new wave of ready-to-drink cocktails, here’s a terrific introduction. And if you think you’ve sampled the best of the lot, think again. This take on the Negroni by well-known Los Angeles bartender Nick Meyer imparts a festive, Caribbean-influenced touch to the classic gin/vermouth/Italian bitters recipe with the addition of sweet, floral hibiscus and wintry baking spices. The use of Ford’s Gin as the base is a savvy move, as it was developed specifically to be used by bartenders and to stand out in any cocktail. Simply pour it into an Old Fashioned/rocks glass over ice, garnish with a twist of orange peel if you’ve got it handy, and voila — you’ve got a pro-quality drink in the comfort of your home, without having to do the work or buy the ingredients.
The icing on the cake — or the garnish on the cocktail? — is that part of the proceeds from your pre-batched deliciousness goes to the United States Bartenders Guild (USBG) National Charity Foundation. The USBG is a national organization devoted to the advancing the craft of the bartending, and this year, they’ve really stepped up, offering assistance, both financial and otherwise, to bartenders who’ve been involuntarily sidelined by the pandemic, as well as lobbying to get more financial aid for bars and bartenders. We think your drink will taste even better when you know you’re helping a good cause.
After you’re done enjoying your Hibiscus Negroni, head-on over to www.Zwissle.com to see what other pre-batched cocktails they can whip up for you. Although we should warn you, you won’t find this one — it’s a Vices exclusive!