A man of many talents, the Godfather is not only our resident grill master and pit master, he is also the resident mixologist, creating cocktails and mocktails sure to delight. One of his specialties is the classic mint mojito – both the cocktail and mocktail (non-alcoholic) versions. In fact, the non-alcoholic mojito was the drink he mixed for me at parties while I was expecting our little one. Both versions (with and without) rum, are delicious!
The secret to a really good mojito is not to cut corners. Keep the ingredients simple, fresh, and don’t, don’t, don’t use a pre-made mix! Fake mint flavor tastes funny anyway. They’re also best muddled by hand. You can either make the drinks individually, or scale up and make a pitcher. When the Godfather makes a pitcher, say, if we’re entertaining guests, he usually muddles the mint, lime, and sugar together in a small mortar and pestle similar to this one and then pours it all into the pitcher and adds the other ingredients as usual.
I once read somewhere that mojitos are one of the cocktails bartenders hate to make because it has to be made by hand and takes more time than something like a jack and coke. I really hope that was just the one author’s opinion after a conversation with a cranky bartender, because I’d hate to think that even with the current buzz surrounding the field of mixology and attention paid to classic cocktails that the art of making a mojito will disappear. Being in South Florida the early part of my life, nothing says beach cocktail to me like a mojito paired with a gorgeous sun dress and a large hat. It’s elegant, clean, refreshing, much like the drink itself.
We love to use fresh mint from our garden for our mojito recipe, and turbinado sugar to sweeten. You can also use a simple syrup if you’d like, but we almost never have any just sitting around, and as you know, I’m a big believer in the “use what you’ve got” method of cooking most of the time. The recipe makes one 10 ounce low ball glass. Double it to make two, quadruple the recipe for a pitcher. We’ve not tried making more than 4 at a time in the pitcher, partially because of what fits in our mortar and pestle.
If you are adding rum to the mojito, use a clear rum because the color looks best, and the clear rum flavor allows the mint and lime to shine through. If you can find fresh sugar cane, it’s fun to use as a garnish, and you can chew on it after, but if you can’t find it, or don’t want to cut it, don’t worry about it. Summer cocktails are about keeping it stress free, simple, and delicious! Cheers!
- 2 tsp turbinado sugar (you may also substitute simple syrup if you have it)
- 5-8 mint leaves (more for non-alcoholic mojitos)
- 2 oz white rum (if using)
- juice from ½ lime
- club soda
- fresh mint and sugar cane for garnish
- Place the sugar in the bottom of your glass.
- Add the mint leaves and muddle with the sugar.
- Add the rum (if using) and lime juice, top with ice.
- Pour club soda into the glass to fill.
- Stir slowly and garnish with fresh mint leaves and sugar cane.
Find this post and other great ideas at the Momma Told Me Link Party hosted by The Evolution of Mom