Saturday, July 29, 2006

The Vancouver Sun has an interesting article about mojitos.

In Cuba, where the mojito originates, it is apparently made with a kind of spearmint called yerba buena. In her book, Mondo Cocktail, Christine Sismondo makes a good case for an early version of the mojito being the first cocktail ever made. It was based on a sugarcane liqueur and mixed up by Sir Francis Drake in the 1570s.

The author traces Drake's mixed drink, called El Draque, up to the 1900s, when a Spanish immigrant to Cuba called Jose Abeal apparently "perfected" a rum version. It was called the mojito and was served at his grocery-store-cum-rumba-club, a place so decrepit it was eventually re-named Sloppy Joe's.