How to muddle your cocktail drink, illustrated mojito

What makes a good mojito? Good quality rum, fresh limes and mint leaves, and proper muddling.

That’s how we do it at home. Unfortunately, in some establishments, bartenders shortcut the process of making mojito. Instead of muddling the ingredients for each drink separately, everything is thrown into the blender, pureeing the mint leaves that results in a mojito that tastes more like toothpaste than a cocktail drink. Disappointing, really. And infuriating considering how expensive cocktail drinks are in bars.

If you want properly muddled mojitos, or any cocktail drink that calls for muddling, it is always better to prepare the drinks yourself. There is no mystery about muddling — you just need a muddler, the ingredients to me muddled and a glass.

That’s a muddler at the foreground in the photo above. The flat end, in black, is what is used for the actual muddling.

Put the diced fruit and sugar (or sugar syrup) in a glass. Put the muddler in the glass and press lightly and repeatedly to squeeze out the juice from the fruits without turning the fruits into a mush. Add ice and whatever other ingredients you want to use, stir and enjoy.

What cocktail drink was Speedy making in the photos? It’s a drink made with lemons, mint and limoncello.