Based on conversations had with many a Deadspinner, I'm under the impression that a good number of us have become lazy when it comes to the consumption of alcoholic beverages. As a result of drinking, laziness is to be expected, nay, commended, whereas laziness when it comes to the drinks we choose to enjoy - especially when in the confines of our own homes - is no different than reaching for a Hungry Man or darting through the drive-thru with a look of pure shame painted on a rotund visage; it's careless and lacks creativity.
For today's maiden instalment of Boozespin, let's come to terms with the Mojito. The Cuban cocktail makes for a delicious summertime knuckle sandwich that involves far less effort than likely suspected, and will be sure to pique the interest of your significant other in ways that your Bud Light Platinum bottles never will.
Before you shit your Dockers at the prospect of making this, take a deep breath, pull-up your zipper and grab a sheet of paper, for you will need some ingredients to make the drink. It's easy as fuck, I don't even know why I'm writing any of this. Let's assume you're making some for a few people and that you're not a hopeless loser that spends his days commenting on a sports blog and drinking Bud Light Platinums alone.
STEP 1: BUY THE SHIT YOU NEED.
- a dozen limes
- a bunch of mint leaves
- a big-ass bottle of white rum [preference being Havana Club if you can. Bacardi White will do as well, which I'll explain later.]
STEP 2: MAKE SOME SIMPLE SYRUP
An hour or two before you intend to enjoy a homemade Mojito, boil some water, and add an equal amount of sugar to the pot, stirring carefully so as not to make a mess. It's instrumental that it be a 50/50 mix so as to influence the drink, without taking away from the flavours of mint and rum. Once a semi-cloudy and consistent liquid is achieved, using a funnel, place the scalding hot mixture into a sterilized empty wine bottle. If you have a cork or stopper handy, stick 'er in there and throw it in the fridge until it is at an adequately cool temperature. Simple syrup is useful for a slew of other cocktails, and unless you've added some fresh mint or orange rinds like I have in the past, the liquid will not spoil, becoming a staple of the far reaches of your fridge. Moving on, you have some time to kill now. My suggestion, grab a beer and write a blog entry.
STEP 2: MAKE THE DRINK
In a 16 ounce glass, muddle an ounce of the simple syrup with a bunch of mint leaves. Pull the leaves from the sprigs, and throw as many as you'd fancy in the bottom of the glass. If you don't have the means to muddle, use the handle on a wooden spoon or whatever the hell can be found in your kitchen. The idea is that the mint should break down and separate without looking like it was the victim of your Cuisinart blender.
Now, take one of the limes, cut it down the centre, and squeeze enough into the glass in and around an ounce. If you'd rather opt for some store bought lime juice or bullshit margarita mix, so be it, but I won't vouch for your decision and I'll probably run over your cat with my LeBaron. Who am I kidding? It's a Plymouth Acclaim. You may want to do this into a separate glass, so as to not mix the lime seeds with the drink. Once you've got your ounce of lime juice, throw that spent half of a lime into the glass, and pour a shitload of white rum on top of it, somewhere in the vicinity of 2 ounces.
Why white rum? Well, try making it with Appleton or Bacardi Black and you'll find that the flavour profile of the rum will completely overpower the other flavours. Also, the drink will end up looking vaguely like a poorly-layered Long Island. As mentioned above, my preference for a Mojito is one made with Havana Club white rum. Up here in the Great White North, I have no trouble getting my hands on the stuff, though you yankee doodlers and your silly trade embargos might make it a little tougher. I have no idea, we don't deal in tariffs and sanctions with a place that makes awesome booze and cigars. Give me a choice, and I'll always side with the Havana Club, though odds are you have a bottle of Bacardi White somewhere around the house, so use that in an effort to spend as little time separated from the couch as possible. Technically, Bacardi is a Cuban rum, founded by a Spanish immigrant no less, that despite not producing any of its products in Cuba, still emphasizes its roots for commercial reasons. You will not find a bottle of Bacardi in Cuba. Not even a kid wearing an empty one for a shoe. Havana Club is Cuba's most popular rum, run by the commies in accordance with the government's nationalization program stemming from the revolutions in 1959 - when both Bacardi and Havana Club founders fled for the United States - and is sold worldwide by the French company Pernod Ricard. In the 90's a bunch of bullshit went down and the Havana Club founder sold residual rights to Bacardi and they started bottling their own rum based on the original recipe in Puerto Rico, and began selling it in Florida zzzZZZzzzzZZZZZzzzz.
At this point, you should have a glass with muddled mint leaves and simple syrup, swimming in a cloudy looking mixture of white rum and fresh lime juice with a the remnants of the halved lime used for the juice. If you want your Mojito on the tart side, cut the other halved lime into three wedges and throw that in there too. Mix it with a spoon or other stirring device. Should you really want to make the drink as delicious as it can be, use shaved ice in place of cubes from the freezer. Grab a dishtowel and throw in a dozen ice cubes. Ring that thing like your child's neck and beat the fuck out of it with a mallet. If this luxury is not available, opt for the standard method before topping the drink with a few ounces of sparkling soda or mineral water, if you're bourgeois standards will allow for no less.
Stick a lime wedge on the rim of the glass and a sprig of mint and voila, she's done. Barring any disasters, your Mojito should look similar to the one below.
STEP 4: DRINK THE DRINK [REPEAT AS NECESSARY]
Take this and run. Get drunk and add Amerno Averna instead of rum with grapefruit juice, or whatever the heck you have kicking around the kitchen. It won't technically be a Mojito, but who gives a hoot? Thanks for reading this instalment of Boozespin, feel free to leave an insightful comment below, I'll be certain to not read it.