Dark rum mojito with basil

March 25, 2009

Sometimes the best things in life happen in the most unexpected ways. So it was for me last month when my dear friend Vincent called out of the blue, after a two-year hiatus, to invite me for dinner. “Let’s meet at Cuba!” he said. Cuba, a lively and fun restaurant in Greenwich Village, has its own in-house cigar roller and a fantastic live band. As I walked in, I saw Vincent waiting for me at the bar, sipping a mojito. “Give me one of those!” I asked the waiter. It was my first time ordering a mojito — never a fan of syrupy sweetness in drinks, I’d always shied away from the famous Cuban cocktail.

As expected, the mojito that arrived was a bit too sweet for my taste, but it did inspire me to make my own! No sooner had I arrived home than I rummaged through my liquor cabinet only to find a fabulous aged rum. (I’d forgotten I even had it!) Then, as always when creating a recipe, I went to work thinking about the flavors of the drink.

I love all the fresh mint that gets crushed in the classic cocktail, but I wanted to take it to the next level. So I added fresh basil to it. And, needless to say, only a little sugar went into the drink. The result was a refreshing and perfect summer drink — not too sweet, full of flavor and with a nice little kick to boot. I paired it with a cucumber and avocado ceviche — I’d just bought baby burpless cucumbers and the first hothouse tomatoes of the season at our local farmers’ market.

This recipe has been a favorite of my guests many times over already, and I can only hope it will soon be one of yours as well!

Recipe: Cucumber and Avocado Ceviche

Dark Rum Mojito with Basil

serves 2
active time: 10 min

  1. 1 large lime – cut in 1/2″ pieces
  2. 8 large mint leaves
  3. 4 large basil leaves
  4. 2 teaspoons organic sugar
  5. 3 oz (89ml) dark rum
  6. club soda or sparkling water
  1. fresh mint and lime slices as garnish

  1. Step 1: Place the lime, mint, basil, and sugar in a mixing glass. Using a muddler, crush the ingredients until the sugar has dissolved and the lime has released its juice. Top with ice cubes and rum. Shake vigorously until very cold.
  2. Step 2: Fill 2 tumblers with ice. Strain the mixture into the glasses. Top with a little club soda or sparkling water. Garnish with a mint leaf and lime slice. Serve immediately.

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How about another super-refreshing summer cocktail? Try this yellow watermelon margarita with chipotle rim. It’s utterly addictive.

cocktail, mojito, rum
© 2011 Viviane Bauquet Farre Food & Style NY LLC


Disclaimer: As always, my point of view is my own. I do not accept samples, and have no commercial relationship with any product, food or wine company.

{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

Donna Ford June 17, 2011 at 7:22 pm

Hello Viviane,
I’ll be visiting in California in a few days so I’ll take your recipe with me and we’ll all give it a try. Looks cold and delicious! Thank you! Have a great weekend :)


Kristin July 13, 2011 at 1:09 pm

What gorgeous photos! I love the idea of adding the basil, it is absolutely one of my favorite herbs! Have a lovely day!


Leesa W. May 15, 2012 at 6:56 pm

This drink is fab!!!!!! We just made it fresh and it couldn’t be more divine.


Viviane May 20, 2012 at 3:23 pm

Oh… thank you Leesa! You know what? Your comment is making me crave it. I’ll have to make a round this evening… Cheers!


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