Developed from a much, much older drink know as the “El Draque”, which was based on the same ingredients except for the base spirit which was Aguardiente, the predecessor of rum. When the Cuban, lighter style of rum emerged, so did the “Mojito”, and a legend was born. Legend has it that the first Mojito was made in La Bodeguita del Medio bar in Havana, Cuba.However, this is often disputed, with some saying it was La Floridita (of Daiquiri fame) and others saying it was a different place entirely.As with many of the classic drinks, having it at the place it was created is less than overwhelming. Although, the surroundings of being in beautiful Cuba almost make up for the taste of the drink at la Bodegita. Almost.My experience with this drink has been stormy. When working at Bar Feijoa & before that The College Hotel Amsterdam, this was THE most sold drink. By far. It would not be a strange occurrence to be making rows of 10-20 of these at any given time in the night, and sometimes my entire prep for a Friday night would be to pluck mint leaves for 3-4 hours on end, only to come back the next day and see it had all been used up. 😅Then, when i took up management at Door 74, it was a conscious decision to not make mojitos. This was met with confusion, anger, and disbelief at first. But i still believe that it is the right of a bar to decide which drink they do, and do not make. There is a time and a place for every style of food, and for every style of drink. So for a full 10 years i did not make a mojito at all! My time to order a mojito is when i am 100% relaxed, and in need for tall refreshment. There are those that can argue to great lengths as to whether to muddle fresh lime, or use the juice, but for me, the most important element is top notch crushed ice -looking at you, Hoshizaki Europe!- to avoid over dilution, and of course using only fresh a-la-minute lime. As you can see my recipe is quite specific, you can see many debates went over them. But quite sure 2-to-1 will work fine in many cases 🤡.”Mojito”14 fresh mint leaves 50 ml light, cuban-style rum18 ml fresh lime juice12 ml 2:1 sugar syrupGlass: Large Highball.Garnish: couple of mint sprigs and long straw.Slap the mint, add the ingredients, fill with crushed ice til 2/3 of the glass and shortly churn. Fully fill with crushed ice and Top up with soda, we are using London Essence NL.

Serve, smile, and think of Cuba.

📸 by Ming Chao at Perfect Serve Barshow Amsterdam 2018

Author: Timo Janse