Who Would Want To Be Bugged on Valentine’s Day? Probably Lots of Folks

cochineal bug

Cochineal feasting on a cactus.

Early this morning the Daily Beast published an article that was too timely and relevant to pass by, and because of my Bouverie docent credentials Ann has given me permission to take the lead on this quickie lagniappe blog.  It turns out that one of our favorite (and most attractive) aperitifs, Campari, owes (or owed) much of its beauty to a lowly bug (to be entomologically correct, insect) mentioned in yesterday’s blog – the cochineal.  And although Campari no longer contains cochineal-based dye, it still makes some gorgeous cocktails.  Here are a couple of Valentine’s Day suggestions using Campari: the bourbon-based Boulevardier, which we blogged about earlier, or the Mezcal Negroni which we are presenting here.

Mezcal Negroni

Mezcal Negroni

Mezcal Negroni

  • Servings: 1
  • Print
You might want to use a dry vermouth for a less sweet drink.


  • 1 oz mezcal
  • 1 oz campari
  • 1 oz sweet vermouth (Carpano Antica Formula is wonderful – and pricey – but it’s versatile; try it as an aperitif or in your Negroni)
  • 1/2 oz fresh orange juice
  • Orange wedge for garnish

Add all the ingredients to an ice-filled mixing glass, shake, and serve it over the rocks – 1 big ice cube is best – in an old-fashioned glass (alternatively, you can serve it in a chilled cocktail glass with a twist of orange peal) .

Recipe brought to you by BigLittleMeals.com and Andy and Ann


  1. theRaggedys says:

    After learning yesterday that Whole Foods doesn’t (currently) sell Compari, presumably because of the red dye, we’re thinking we should suggest that they carry the St George Bruto Americano – considered by some as America’s answer to Compari – and colored with cochineal. Do you want a bug – or do you want red dye? 🙂


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