Simply Mojito!

Besides the fact they are the best known and drank rum-based drinks, Mojito and Cubalibre have in common the mystery of their origins.
The quintessential Cuban drink, it’s believed the Mojito was ‘adapted’ from the Drake or Draquecito (Little Drake), which became popular during Prohibition (1919-1933), when Americans traveled to the Caribbean island to escape the ban.
Legend has it that Richard Drake —a cousin of Vice Admiral Sir Francis Drake (1540 -1596)—, slave trader and privateer of the British Crown, made it for the first time, during his travels through the Caribbean.
At that time, aguardiente was mixed with water, sugar, lime and mint. It was used not for refreshing purposes but to warm up the sailors and combat scurvy.
Drake may have introduced the drink to Cuba. Later, in the middle of the 19th century, when rum production began in the island, rum replaced aguardiente in its preparation and Draquecito (Little Drake in Spanish)subsequently led to the Mojito.
It is said that the drink was "created" in La Bodeguita del Medio, the very traditional bar in the colonial area of Havana, a few blocks from the Cathedral, where American writer and Nobel Prize for Literature, Ernest Hemingway was an habitué.
A rum killer, Hemingway wrote in the 50's: "My Mojito in La Bodeguita, my Daiquiri in El Floridita", referring to the two bars which he regularly refreshed with two of his favorite cocktails.
According to Erasmo Brito Lima, founding member of the Association of Cuban Bartenders, the Mojito dating from 1910, was prepared for the first time in a bar on the beach of La Concha and contrary to what is intended to believe, his creation is not associated with any particular brand of rum.
6 Mint leaves
3/4 oz Simple syrup (one part water, one part granulated sugar)
1.5 oz Ron de Venezuela Santa Teresa Claro
3/4 oz Fresh lime juice
1.5 oz Club soda

In a shaker, muddle the mint with the simple syrup. Add the rum and lime juice, and fill with ice. Shake well and strain into a highball glass filled with crushed ice. Top off with club soda and garnish with a mint sprig.

To print the recipe click here.

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