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Easy Mixed Drinks: Campari Grapefruit Cocktail

Updated on December 23, 2014
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Penelope is retired, but teaches English in Rome. She is a published feature writer, playwright and poet. She loves local Italian customs.

Campari Grapefruit Ice

Campari Grapefruit Ice
Campari Grapefruit Ice | Source

An Easy Cocktail

'Campari Grapefruit' couldn't be a simpler cocktail or more refreshing on the palette. It's a pretty, pink drink - a touch sharp, a touch sweet, a touch bitter. It's cool. It's fruity. It's socially versatile. And it is surprising.

This Italian, easy mixed drink is made with just two principal ingredients, Campari and squeezed grapefruit - served over a Highball glass of ice, not sieved or shaken.

  • Campari Bitters makes a perfect day time or night-time alcoholic party drink for summer and winter being less alcoholic (25%) than the big-guy spirits - such as whiskey and vodka (40%).
  • Its refreshing taste as a mixer makes a good thirst quenching aperitif.
  • Being ever so slightly continental, Campari Grapefruit is a fun cocktail for both men and women at any bar, though the Campari website maintains men might prefer it more. Friends disagree
  • It's an alternative easy mixed drink to prepare in punch bowls at wedding receptions, dressy receptions and garden parties, especially for the avant garde at heart.

And Campari costs less than most spirits too!

Campari Grapefruit

5 stars from 3 ratings of Campari Grapefruit

Cook Time

Prep time: 2 min
Ready in: 2 min
Yields: 1 glass


  • 1 part Campari Bitters
  • 3 parts grapefruit, squeezed
  • tumbler ice cubes


  1. Cut a grapefruit in two, squeeze - and hold the juice
  2. Three quarter fill a tumbler glass with ice cubes
  3. Pour 1 part Campari Bitters over the ice
  4. Pour 3 part grapefruit juice over the Campari
  5. Serve

Summer Cocktail Drink

Campari Grapefruit Cocktail
Campari Grapefruit Cocktail | Source

Campari Grapefruit

Nutrition Facts
Serving size: 1/2 cup
Calories 140
Calories from Fat0
% Daily Value *
Carbohydrates 40 g13%
Protein 1 g2%
* The Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet, so your values may change depending on your calorie needs. The values here may not be 100% accurate because the recipes have not been professionally evaluated nor have they been evaluated by the U.S. FDA.

What is Campari Bitters?

Campari is made from a pure infusion of aromatic herbs, plants and fruits in alcohol and water.

The formula for the actual ingredients is a 150 year old most guarded secret. Very few people have ever known what they are.

Speculation has the number of ingredients down to between 20 and 80!

It was first invented in Novarra, Italy in 1860.

'Campari Bitters' was inaugurated 40 years later in Milan.

It is still the same family owned and operated business, still in Milan (check the label out) and it continues the traditions (and secrets) of the original recipe.

Punch Bowl for Weddings and Receptions

A bunch bowl from the Spanish Royal House, 1830 (Baccarat manufactory)
A bunch bowl from the Spanish Royal House, 1830 (Baccarat manufactory) | Source

Mixed Drink Glasses

A mixed drink presentation has to look like a short holiday, something beautiful, seducing, a visual clue for the taste experience thrill you're in for. The drink can be as colorful as the flowers in a painting by Gauguin, or as soda-masochistic spartan as a gin martini. It can bring you into a bar with Bogart in "The Maltese Falcon" - or it can glow as a geranium, as Campari Grapefruit does! A good cocktail clinks in many varied shapes and sizes of mixed drink glasses.

The list is long and the shapes are varied - and here is a list of some of the most famous ones:

The beer mug - For Shandy's (beer or lager mixed with lime cordial or ginger ale)

Champagne Flute - For Bellini and Spritzers

Collins Glass - Famous for Tom Collins, good for fruit drink mixes

Highball Glass - Most common mixed drink glass, good for Campari Grapefruit

Hurricane Glass - Tropical and exotic mixed drinks like Piña Colada

Margarita Glass (or Coupette) - Good for Margaritas and Daiquiris

Martini Glass or Cocktail Glass - Chilling the V shaped glass before and not adding ice makes it the perfect Martini glass

Old Fashioned Glass - For drinks 'on the rocks' or with a 'splash'

Punch Bowl - For parties, often serving the mixed drink with a ladel

Bartender Tips Making Drinks with Glasses

Never use the glass to scoop ice. Use an ice scoop, or a ladle.

Don't put ice in a glass straight out of the dishwasher. It will break.

Use a tray to serve drinks.

Always handle the glass by the stem or at the base.

How to Make a Negroni

How to make a Negroni:

Ingredients for one tumbler glass

1 part Campari Bitters

1 part Gin

1 part Vermouth Cinzano Rosso

Over a 'rock' glass filled with chunks of ice, pour the gin. Over this pour the Campari Bitters and Cinzano Rosso. Garnish with a slice of orange.

Cin Cin. (pronounced 'Chin Chin').

On the Rocks

Being a classic kind of 'on the rocks' drink, Campari Grapfruit is cool mixed and served in a classic Highball Glass, or 'Old Fashioned'.

If you have a bottle of Campari Bitters you're set to try three other Campari 'on the rocks' mixed drinks cocktails, looking good when they're served in that 'ol Highball Glass!

Campari Orange, also called a 'Garibaldi' is mixed in the same way as a Campari Grapefruit. It's a sweeter drink; the orange masks a little of Campari's bitterness.

Negroni. This is the most popular cocktail drink in Tuscany this summer. It's practically the only 'drink' young people order at the bars when they all meet after work and over the weekend. It has much higher alcohol content than Campari Grapefruit; cuts right to the quick, quicker.

Campari on the Rocks

For lovers of the special taste of Campari there is always a straight shot.

1 part Campari bitters' on the rocks'.

Campari Grapefruit

'Capari Grapefruit' couldn't be a simpler cocktail or more refreshing on the palette. It's a pretty, pink drink - a touch sharp, a touch sweet, a touch bitter. It's cool. It's fruity. It's socially versatile. And it is surprising.

Summertime, at cocktail hour or during the heat of the middle of the day, here at our local Tuscan bar, barman Alfredo serves 'Campari Grapefruit' as an alternative to Prosecco cocktails, or to cold local white wine. The combination of Campari Bitters and tart/sweet fruitiness of grapefruit cuts the heat right out.

It's Italian cooool!

Cin cin. (Pronounced Chin chin!)

Welcome to our Local Wine Bar in Tuscany for a Campari Grapefruit

Local Wine Bar.  Nettare e Ambrosia in Montiano
Local Wine Bar. Nettare e Ambrosia in Montiano | Source

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© 2012 Penelope Hart


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