Campari Sour (Campari, Gin and Lemon Cocktail): Step by step recipe

Campari Sour is a gin cocktail with simple ingredients, such as Campari, gin, simple syrup… When thinking about Campari, most people would associate it with the Negroni, which is not everyone’s favorite due to its intense flavor. The Gin Campari Sour, however, has a lighter and more interesting taste by adding in lemon juice and skipping the vermouth.

About Campari Sour

One of the key components that make a balanced cocktail is the bitter flavor. We can add the bitterness to a cocktail by using amaro – a type of liqueur with a bitter taste. This word also stands for “bitter” in Italian and it’s plural form is “amari”.

There’s a wide variety of amari and Campari Sour is one of them. Campari is an alcoholic liqueur originated from Italy, made from the infusion of fruit and herbs in water and alcohol. But the exact ingredients for Campari still remain a secret.

Campari is characterized by a bright red color and is one of the most widely available and well-known types. Campari gives a heavy bitter note but also spicy and lots of sweetness, just like you’re biting into a citrus rind.

Campari Sour is widely used in the making of cocktails. It’s often combined with prosecco to make a spritz. The garnishings that come with this liqueur can be blood lime slices or blood orange. Campari is also served with citrus juice (such as pink grapefruit juice) or soda water.

Campari is a type of liqueur originates from Italy, produced by the Davide Campari Group
Campari is a type of liqueur originates from Italy, produced by the Davide Campari Group

Gin Campari Sour Tips

The perfect ratio

Sometimes we want cocktails to give a bit of an aggressive bite. But other times we’re looking to mellow them out a little bit. Campari, Gin and lemon are the star ingredients in this Campari Sour cocktail, as they pair beautifully white maintaining their sharp edges.

This cocktail has a sour ingredient, which is the lemon and we must balance it out with sweetness. To create a sour cocktail like this, the usual ratio should be 1 part sweet, 1 part sour and 2 parts alcohol.

Choosing the right gin

Choosing the suitable gin for this cocktail is also something you should devote your time to. The most recommended choice would be Tanqueray. This type of gin pairs well with Negronis as well as other Campari Sour cocktails. But there are several other options that go well with it, such as Boodles British Gin, Aviation Gin, Gordon’s Gin, Barr Hill Tom Cat…

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Ingredients, additions and substitutions

Both Gin and Campari have alcohol, so you can reduce the total amount of gin. These two liqueurs also give lots of sweetness, but both the Campari’s bitterness and the lemon’s sour will work against it. So to balance things out, a little simple syrup needs to be added to the cocktail recipes. Instead of orange bitters, you can also use Angostura bitters.

To obtain a more sophisticated texture and flavor, you can also add an egg white to the mixture. This will not also help to contribute a silky texture but also integrate and mellow the flavors of lemon, Campari and Gin, creating an elegant opacity to a vividly colored cocktail.

In fact, Gin Campari sours and Negronis share a lot of ingredients. The big difference lies in the egg white.

Campari Sour ingredients

  • Egg white (1)
  • Simple syrup (1/2 oz.)
  • Fresh lemon juice (3/4 oz.)
  • Campari (3/4 oz.)
  • Gin (1 1/2 oz.)
  • Orange bitters (1-3 dashes)
  • Small orange wedge (1, for garnishing)

Sour Campari step by step instructions

The cocktail is actually quite easy to make! Here are the step by step instructions:

Step 1: Make simple syrup

To start off, you have to make the simple syrup. This ingredient is widely used in many drinks, from juices to tea to cocktails and it can be stored in a refrigerator. For the simple syrup, you need 1 cup of water and 1 cup of sugar. Then combine these two in a small pot. Cook at low heat and stir until the sugar dissolves completely. Remove from heat and chill.

Make the simple syrup for Campari Sour out of water and sugar
Make the simple syrup for Campari Sour out of water and sugar

Step 2: Combine the ingredients and shake

Combine the ingredients above: Campari Sour, Gin, lemon juice, orange bitters, simple syrup and egg white in a cocktail shaker. Then shake until all is incorporated (this is called “dry shake” (shaking without ice).

In case you use a 3-piece metal cocktail shaker, during a dry shake the liquid will leak. This is because the metal doesn’t contract and form a tight seal as there’s no ice to chill it. Just pay close attention and shake over your sink. You can even put some ice in your shaker first then discard them before getting to the dry shake.

Fill the shaker with ice (about 3/4 full) and shake vigorously (about 30 seconds) until the egg white is combined and frothy. This is the most difficult part in making cocktails. But it will help you make beautiful foam for the Campari Sour and blend the ingredients together.

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Fill the shaker with ice and shake vigorously
Fill the shaker with ice and shake vigorously

Step 3: Strain the cocktail into a glass and serve

You can serve the cocktail with ice in the old fashioned way or without ice, your choice. In case you’re serving it right away. Before straining the cocktail don’t forget to chill your glass beforehand for 30 minutes or more. Or you can just keep one in the refrigerator for such occasions.

Strain the Sour Campari cocktail out of the cocktail shaker
Strain the Sour Campari cocktail out of the cocktail shaker

Strain the cocktail into the glass and twist a lemon peel on top to add more flavor. The foam will rise to the top of the glass as the cocktail rests. Garnish the glass with orange wedge or lemon peel and serve it up.

Twiste a lemon peel on top to add more flavor to the cocktail
Twiste a lemon peel on top to add more flavor to the cocktail

Of course, the Gin Campari sour still maintains the bitterness, but it’s definitely more accessible than Negronis. Even if you’re not a big fan of Campari or gin’s bitter taste, you should give this recipe a try. It might change your opinion about Campari cocktails. Don’t forget to visit Bourbon O‘s website regularly for more interesting cocktail recipes!

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Campari Sour

Campari Sour is a gin cocktail with simple ingredients, such as Campari, gin, simple syrup… When thinking about Campari, most people would associate it with the Negroni, which is not everyone’s favorite due to its intense flavor. The Gin Campari Sour, however, has a lighter and more interesting taste by adding in lemon juice and skipping the vermouth.

  • Author: Bourbon O
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 10 minutes
  • Total Time: 15 minutes
  • Yield: 1
  • Category: Cocktail
  • Method: Mix
  • Cuisine: American, Italian

Ingredients

  • Egg white (1)
  • Simple syrup (1/2 oz.)
  • Fresh lemon juice (3/4 oz.)
  • Campari (3/4 oz.)
  • Gin (1 1/2 oz.)
  • Orange bitters (1-3 dashes)
  • Small orange wedge (1, for garnishing)

Instructions

Step 1: Make simple syrup To start off, you have to make the simple syrup. This ingredient is widely used in many drinks, from juices to tea to cocktails and it can be stored in a refrigerator. For the simple syrup, you need 1 cup of water and 1 cup of sugar. Then combine these two in a small pot. Cook at low heat and stir until the sugar dissolves completely. Remove from heat and chill.

Step 2: Combine the ingredients and shake. Combine the ingredients above: Campari Sour, Gin, lemon juice, orange bitters, simple syrup and egg white in a cocktail shaker. Then shake until all is incorporated (this is called “dry shake” (shaking without ice).

Step 3: Strain the cocktail into a glass and serve. You can serve the cocktail with ice in the old fashioned way or without ice, your choice. In case you’re serving it right away. Before straining the cocktail don’t forget to chill your glass beforehand for 30 minutes or more. Or you can just keep one in the refrigerator for such occasions.

Notes

Choosing the suitable gin for this cocktail is also something you should devote your time to. The most recommended choice would be Tanqueray. This type of gin pairs well with Negronis as well as other Campari Sour cocktails. But there are several other options that go well with it, such as Boodles British Gin, Aviation Gin, Gordon’s Gin, Barr Hill Tom Cat…

Both Gin and Campari have alcohol, so you can reduce the total amount of gin. These two liqueurs also give lots of sweetness, but both the Campari’s bitterness and the lemon’s sour will work against it. So to balance things out, a little simple syrup needs to be added to the cocktail recipes. Instead of orange bitters, you can also use Angostura bitters.

Nutrition

  • Serving Size: 1 cocktail
  • Calories: 232kcal
  • Sugar: 18g
  • Sodium: 10mg
  • Fat: 1g
  • Saturated Fat: 1g
  • Carbohydrates: 25g
  • Protein: 1g

Keywords: Campari Sour Recipe

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1 thought on “Campari Sour (Campari, Gin and Lemon Cocktail): Step by step recipe”

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