As I juiced my millionth pomegranate of the winter using the hand-cranked press that sits on our counter, it occurred to me: Who needs Campari when you’ve got fresh pomegranate juice? The fruit’s tannic, sweet-bitter taste stands in perfectly for the classic Italian aperitif, especially with a shake or two of bitters to steer the drink firmly out of the sugary column. Of course, a blood orange slice makes positively everything look gorgeous and calls to mind yet another element of Campari, orange peels.
In an ice-filled cocktail shaker, vigorously shake the pomegranate juice, vermouth, gin and bitters. Pour into two ice-filled rocks glasses, add more bitters to taste, and garnish with orange wheels. The recipe can be multiplied (minus the ice) and stored in a pitcher for up to a week and can be freshened with more bitters as needed.