6 Unconventional Mojito Recipes To Try Right Now

    Fresh takes on the classic Cuban cocktail on National Mojito Day

    by · July 11, 2017

    In case you weren’t aware, today is a very important holiday: National Mojito Day. This traditional Cuban cocktail just happens to be one of our favorite concoctions to sip all summer long, most notably because of its bright, but never overwhelming, taste.

    Traditionally, the mojito includes the following: white rum, sugar, lime juice, soda water, and mint. Pretty simple, huh? While we certainly appreciate the classic cocktail for its refreshing, summery flavor, we can’t help but want to spice things up once in a while. So, just like any other food- or drink-related holiday, what better way to celebrate than to (throw a party, and) try some of the craziest, most unconventional recipes?

    We chatted with six mojito experts from all walks of the booze spectrum about their totally nontraditional takes on the classic mojito. Keep scrolling down for recipes that are sure to impress. Salud!

    Gretchen Thomas, Bartaco, multiple locations
    At Bartaco, the upscale street food restaurant drawing inspiration from the beach culture of Brazil, Uruguay, and Southern California, wine and spirits director Gretchen Thomas likes to turn up the heat on classic cocktails. “Giving the classic mojito a spicy kick, the Anchojito Verde is made using Ancho Reyes Verde liqueur, mint, fresh lime juice, and finished with club soda.”

    Anchojito Verde
    10 to 12 mint leaves
    5 sugar cubes
    1 pinch salt
    1 oz lime juice
    1 1/2 oz rum
    1/2oz Ancho Reyes Verde liqueur
    Splash club soda
    7 to 9 whole mint leaves and 2 lime wedges for garnish

    Add mint, sugar cubes, and lime juice to a cocktail shaker and gently muddle. Add in rum, Ancho Reyes, and ice and shake well. Next, double strain into a highball glass and add ice. Rinse the cocktail shaker with a splash of club soda (to grab the remaining sugar) and double strain into the highball. Garnish with mint leaves and limes.

    Photo courtesy of JIMMY at The James

    Johnny Swet, JIMMY at The James, New York
    Mixologist and co-owner of JIMMY at The James, Johnny Swet knows how to tug on our heartstrings—and taste buds—by incorporating avocados into his magical mojito. “The combination of pureed avocado and lime with rum, mint, and agave nectar makes for a frothy spin on the traditional mojito,” he says. “The avocado doesn’t come through until the very end of each sip, in the same way you’re left with lingering tannins after a taste of wine. If you think of the warmer regions where the avocado is from, it makes sense that it plays so well with rum and tequila.” You don’t have to tell us twice.

    Avocado Mojito
    Ingredients:8 to 10 mint leaves
    2 oz Sailor Jerry Rum
    2 oz avocado puree
    3/4 oz agave nectar
    Mint and lime wedge for garnish

    Directions:Muddle mint leaves in a cocktail shaker, then add the remaining ingredients. Shake with ice and strain the mixture into a tall glass. Swizzle with crushed ice and garnish with mint and lime wedge.

    Photo courtesy of Flor de Caña

    Ashela Richardson, Flor de Caña
    Nicaraguan rum brand Flor de Caña is all about adding some complexity and character to their cocktails. Brand ambassador Ashela Richardson feels that when it comes to hosting a party, a little sparkling wine goes a long way—so why not add to the classic mojito? “I think the perfect welcome cocktail ought to have a little sparkling wine with it,” she says, “Here, we made a classic aged rum mojito and topped it with some bubbly wine instead of soda water.” Another way to mix up your typical mojito? “Use basil in place of mint,” she says, “It’s aromatic and great for mixing with a complex rum like Flor de Caña.”

    Ultimate Flor Mojito
    1 1/2 parts Flor de Caña 7 rum
    1 tbs superfine sugar
    Lime wedges
    4 sprigs fresh mint
    Sparkling wine to top

    To create this extra-boozy take on the mojito, begin by muddling mint leaves, superfine sugar, and lime in a mixing glass. Add in the Flor de Caña rum and ice, and transfer all to a cocktail shaker and shake. Strain into a tall glass filled with ice, and top off with sparkling wine and extra mint for garnish.

    Photo courtesy of Her Name Is Han

    Jinah Chang, Her Name Is Han, New York
    New York’s Her Name Is Han puts a Korean twist on the classic Cuban cocktail by incorporating a rice-based liquor native to the country, rather than opting for a traditional rum recipe. “By throwing Hwayo’s unique flavor from rice into a familiar drink like the mojito, I wanted to create a refreshing cocktail that allows customers to easier approach the Korean dining experience,” says Jinah Chang, the restaurant’s food and beverage director.

    Lime Ginger Mojito
    Ingredients:3 to 5 pieces sliced lime
    Fresh mint leaves
    1oz homemade ginger compote
    3oz Hwayo
    2oz sparkling water

    Place limes, mint, and ginger compote into a glass. Using a muddle stick, mash to release flavors. Then, add Hwayo and ice, topping everything off with sparkling water. Garnish with extra mint and limes as desired.

    Photo courtesy of Oficina Latina

    Luis Zhumi, Oficina Latina, New York
    Who doesn’t love a little lychee and ginger? Luis Zhumi, head bartender at Oficina Latina in New York, shares his recipe for the ginger-lychee mojito, one of the restaurant’s signature cocktails. “We took inspiration from the Pan-American Highway to develop our restaurant, and we recreate the rich and exotic flavors of Latin America when it comes to our food and drink.” The result? A cocktail he describes as both delicious and sexy.

    Ginger and Lychee Mojito
    Ingredients:1 oz freshly squeezed lime juice
    1/2 oz ginger syrup
    1 oz fresh lychee puree
    1 tsp granulated sugar
    3 fresh mint sprigs
    1 1/2oz white rum
    1/2 oz lychee liquor
    Club soda
    Spiced rum
    Candied ginger, fresh lychee, and fresh mint for garnish

    In a highball glass, add fresh lime juice, ginger syrup, lychee puree, granulated sugar, and fresh mint. Muddle gently, not to break the mint but to release its essential oils and aromas. Add in rum and lychee liquor, then fill with crushed ice. Top with club soda and spiced rum and garnish with candied ginger, lychee, and mint.

    Photo courtesy of The Friend

    William Cutting, The Friend, Los Angeles
    Forget the rum. If your looking for a mojito with a bit of smokiness, look no further than head bartender William Cutting’s mezcal rendition at The Friend in L.A. “I wanted to create something refreshing and smoky, but with all the familiarity of a traditional mojito,” he says. “If this cocktail were a band, it’d definitely be Parliament Funkadelic.”

    P-Funk Mojito
    Ingredients:1 1/2 oz Vida Mezcal
    3/4 oz Montenegro
    3/4 oz lime
    3/4 oz simple syrup
    5 to 7 large mint leaves
    Sparkling water

    Mix all ingredients and shake with ice. Top with sparkling water and extra mint sprigs.

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    Last updated: 2017-07-11T09:54:50-04:00
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