Smoky Mezcal Negroni Cocktail Recipe

Add a little smoke to your bittersweet Negroni by swapping out gin for mezcal.

Updated March 3, 2024
Savory Mezcal Negroni Cocktail

When it comes to a smooth mezcal Negroni cocktail, get ready to experience a trifecta of flavors: smokey, sweet, and bitter. While the classic Negroni has a distinct, straightforward flavor, the mezcal Negroni is a cocktail with a sultry personality. Skip the juniper notes and get down to earth with this cocktail that has never truly left the scene. 

How to Make a Mezcal Negroni 

While pairing mezcal with sweet vermouth and bitter Campari might initially sound surprising, trust us when we say it's a delightful combination. The natural sweetness of the agave in mezcal creates a perfectly balanced flavor, unlike the typical gin-based Negroni. It's a cocktail with a whole lot of personality and taste. 


  • 1 ounce mezcal
  • 1 ounce sweet vermouth
  • 1 ounce Campari
  • Ice
  • Orange peel for garnish


  1. In a mixing glass, add mezcal, sweet vermouth, and Campari.
  2. Stir rapidly to chill.
  3. Strain into a rocks glass over fresh ice.
  4. Garnish with an orange peel.
Quick Tip

Make this cocktail extra smokey with smoked ice cubes. You can easily do this by smoking water with wood chips in a smoker or using a simple smoking gun. The smoked ice cubes will infused in your cocktail. 

Mezcal Negroni Variations 

Although the mezcal Negroni can't swap out any ingredients, you can freely modify the style and proportions.

  • Experiment with different proportions, adding an extra quarter to half an ounce of mezcal or Campari, aiming to keep approximately three ounces of the ingredients in total as you go.
  • Include one to two dashes of orange or lemon bitters to emphasize the citrus flavors.
  • Different brands of sweet vermouth will affect the taste of the cocktail. Play around with different styles and brands, but absolutely stick with sweet vermouth and avoid dry vermouth.
  • For a slightly sweeter smokey Negroni, add a quarter ounce of simple syrup or orange liqueur.

Related: 15 Mezcal Recipes With Unique Flavors

Cocktail Garnishes

Feel free to skip the orange peel garnish in favor of one that works for your mezcal Negroni vision board.

  • Instead of an orange peel, use an orange ribbon or twist.
  • Opt for a lemon peel, ribbon, or twist instead of orange.
  • For more robust citrus notes, use a lemon or orange wheel, wedge, or slice.
  • Double the citrus notes by using two citrus peels. First, express one orange peel over the drink by twisting the peel between your fingers, running the colorful outside of the peel (not the inner pith) along the rim before discarding it. Express the second orange peel over the glass but leave this peel in the drink as a garnish.
  • For a double citrus peel garnish, you can do this with orange, lemon, or both in combination.
  • A dehydrated orange or lemon wheel lends a unique and contemporary look.
  • A lemon wedge, wheel, or slice adds a similar citrus brightness to the drink.

Bittersweet and Smoky

If you're hesitant to try a mezcal Negroni, don't hesitate for another minute. The earthy smokiness of the alluring mezcal takes this bitter classic to fiery heights. Go ahead and skip the gin this time. It'll still be there for next time.

Smoky Mezcal Negroni Cocktail Recipe