On World Gin Day 2013 I was in Paris and I set out on a pilgrimage. I went to Harry’s New York Bar to have a French 75 in the very place where it was invented. Much to my horror I was served champagne, gin, lemon juice and pernod in a high ball. I have never been so disappointed.

So it was with a little apprehension that, just a few days shy of World Gin Day 2016, I approached Caffè Giacosa in Florence, the famed cafe where Count Negroni demanded something stronger than fizzy water in his Americano. But I needn’t have worried!

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Although Caffè Giacosa is now rather incongruously part of a Roberto Cavalli store, Alessandro behind the bar took me for the negroni fiend I am as soon as I bounded in an ordered two. Lovely AB told him that I was a gin writer and he whipped out the Antica Formula they keep in the fridge for special (see fussy) customers.

Negroni at Caffe GThey are still serving a solid negroni at Caffè Giacosa. Beefeater is the perfectly acceptable house pour. I would prefer a twist of orange peel over a slice, but that’s a small quibble for a lovely drink. And as AB took 360 degree photos of the bar and put them on streetview I think we got half of them for free!

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