One of the saddest days of my life was when I found out that there is no real evidence that Ernest Hemingway ever drank a Mojito.
Not that this is the reason I started drinking them. That we can blame on a decent-looking bartender from my youth, who had a passion for them and could tell a good story. A few years later, I read an article on eater.com, where Philip Greene debunked the hand-written quote on the wall at La Bodeguita as a marketing scam and that ‘if he drank it, he generally wrote about it”, which sadly he did not.
Now while it doesn’t really matter whether he did drink the rum-based cocktail or not, the idea that it was one of his favourite cocktails added, in my mind at least, a certain romance to the drink.
You see, Mojitos, when they are properly made, would have to be one of my favourite summer drinks. A simple mix of rum, mint, lime, sugar, and club soda, it’s a drink that you can easily picture yourself drinking if you had been fortunate enough to be in Havana during the 1940s and 50s.
Sure, the muddling can be a bit of a pain at times, but the mint and lime give the drink a cool refreshing nature, while the soda provides an effervescent crispness that makes it one of the only things that can help you survive those unbearably hot, steamy summer days.
But the rum you use can also be a factor. While clear rums are often much maligned, they are perfect for a Mojito as the subtle flavour of the spirit allows the brightness of the drink’s other ingredients to shine through.
These are 5 clear rums that we suggest when you are making your next Mojito.
Banks 5 Island
Banks 5 Island Blend Imported White Rum is a premium blended rum that gets its backbone from Trinidad, its complexity from Jamaica, its zest from Guyana, its spice from Barbados, and its unique exotic aroma and exceptionally long finish from Javanese rum Batavia Arrack. Offering a unique blend of 21 rums from six distilleries and five origins, this white rum is barrel-aged and charcoal filtered for a lingering finish.
Banks 5 Island is available through Reserve Bar via this affiliate link. Must be 21 or older to purchase.
Plantation 3 Stars
Plantation 3 Stars is a tribute to the historic rums produced in the Caribbean, with a suave blend of the region’s three primary terroirs: Barbados, Jamaica and Trinidad. While Barbados delivers richness and a balanced palate, Trinidad adds a certain finesse, while Jamaica provides an emphatic structure.
Plantation 3 Star is available through Reserve Bar via this affiliate link. Must be 21 or older to purchase.
Havana Club Añejo
Made with passion and pride in Puerto Rico, the Anejo Blanco Rum delivers notes of tropical fruits and florals with hints of vanilla and oak. A Spanish-style rum that uses the uniquely original 1934 double ageing recipe, which results in a smoother and more premium-tasting rum. Aged for one year in oak barrels, this rum is then blended and aged again for at least two months for a smooth, short finish that never lingers.
Havana Club Añehjo is available through Drily via this affiliate link. Must be 21 or older to purchase.
Wray & Nephew Overproof
Synonymous with Jamaican culture, Wray & Nephew is truly part of the nation’s heritage and has remained a staple of socializing and celebrating with friends and family, dating back to the early 1800s. Wray & Nephew is handcrafted in Jamaica’s Nassau Valley, produced via small batch distillation, un-aged, at 125.5% proof.
Wray & Nephew is available through Drily via this affiliate link. Must be 21 or older to purchase.
Flor de Caña Extra Seco 4 Year
A sugar-free 4-year-old premium rum that is sustainably produced and Fair Trade certified. From a 5th generation family estate, it is naturally aged without artificial ingredients, distilled 100% with renewable energy and kosher certified. A light-bodied rum with a long and smooth finish that lingers on the palate. Perfect for classic white rum cocktails and refreshing drinks.
Flor de Cana is available through Reserve Bar via this affiliate link. Must be 21 or older to purchase.