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IBA official cocktail
Base spirit
ServedOn the rocks: poured over ice
Standard garnishsprigs of mint or slice of lime
Standard drinkware
Collins glass
IBA specified
PreparationMix mint sprigs with sugar and lime juice. Add splash of soda water and fill the glass with ice. Pour the rum and top with soda water. Light stir to involve all ingredients.
Mojito recipe at International Bartenders Association

Mojito (/mˈht/; Spanish: [moˈxito]) is a traditional Cuban punch. The cocktail often consists of five ingredients: white rum, sugar (traditionally sugar cane juice), lime juice, soda water, and mint.[1][2] Its combination of sweetness, citrus, and herbaceous mint flavors is intended to complement the rum, and has made the mojito a popular summer drink.[3][4]

When preparing a mojito, fresh lime juice is added to sugar (or to simple syrup) and mint leaves. The mixture is then gently mashed with a muddler. The mint leaves should only be bruised to release the essential oils and should not be shredded.[5] Then rum is added and the mixture is briefly stirred to dissolve the sugar and to lift the mint leaves up from the bottom for better presentation. Finally, the drink is topped with crushed ice and sparkling soda water. Mint sprigs or lime wedges are used to garnish the glass.

In Cuba, the mint used to make mojito is most commonly Mentha × villosa (called yerba buena or hierbabuena in Cuba) which has a light minty-citrus aroma, but outside of Cuba spearmint, which has a stronger mint aroma, is often used.[6]


Havana, Cuba, is the birthplace of the mojito,[7][8][9][10][11] although its exact origin is a subject of debate. It was known that the native people had remedies for various tropical illnesses, so a small boarding party went ashore on Cuba and came back with ingredients for an effective medicine. The ingredients were aguardiente de caña (translated as "burning water", a crude form of rum made from sugar cane) mixed with local tropical ingredients: lime, sugarcane juice, and mint.[12] Lime juice on its own would have significantly prevented scurvy and dysentery,[13][14][11] and tafia/rum was soon added as it became widely available to the British (ca. 1650). Mint, lime and sugar were also helpful in hiding the harsh taste of this spirit. Another theory is that it was invented by Sir Francis Drake. The "El Draque" cocktail was prepared with brandy.[11] While this drink was not called a Mojito at this time, it was the original combination of these ingredients.[4]

Some historians[who?] contend that African slaves who worked in the Cuban sugar cane fields during the 19th century were instrumental in the cocktail's origin.[15] Guarapo, the sugar cane juice often used in mojitos,[4] was a popular drink among the slaves who named it.[15] It never originally contained lime juice.[16][17]

There are several theories behind the origin of the name Mojito: one such theory holds that name relates to mojo, a Cuban seasoning made from lime and used to flavor dishes.[4][18] Another theory is that the name Mojito is simply a derivative of mojadito (Spanish for "lightly wet"), the diminutive of mojado ("wet").[19]

The mojito has routinely been presented as a favorite drink of author Ernest Hemingway.[20] It has also often been said that Hemingway made the bar called La Bodeguita del Medio famous when he became one of its regulars and wrote "My Mojito in La Bodeguita, My Daiquiri in El Floridita" on a wall of the bar. This epigraph, handwritten and signed in his name,[21] persists despite doubts expressed by Hemingway biographers about such patronage and the author's taste for mojitos.[22] La Bodeguita del Medio is better known for its food than its drink.[23][24]

A survey by an international market research company found that in 2016 the mojito was the most popular cocktail in Britain and France.[25]


It is said that some hotels in Havana use powdered sugar with the mint leaves rather than granulated sugar as the former dissolves more readily, while many establishments use simple syrup instead.[26] The "rose mojito", which is a mojito variation containing the rose-flavored spirit, Lanique, was first created at the Albert's Schloss bar in Manchester, England.[27] A mojito without alcohol is called a "virgin mojito" or "nojito".[28] The Cojito adds coconut flavor, often through the use of coconut-flavored rum.[29] A dirty mojito calls for gold rum instead of white rum, and raw sugar or demerara sugar.[30] Demerara is a light brown, partially refined, sugar produced from the first crystallization during processing cane juice into sugar crystals. Adding this to a mojito gives it a caramel-like flavor.[31] A dark rum mojito simply calls for a dark rum to be used instead of white.[30]

In Mexico, tequila brand Don Julio offers the "mojito blanco" by simply replacing rum with tequila.[32]

In Peru, there are mojito variations that are made by adding fruits like grapefruit, called "mojito de toronja",[33] or with passionfruit, called "mojito de maracuyá".[34] Many restaurants serve them,[35][36][better source needed] and these added ingredients enhance the cocktail and its original flavor. Some other fruits are found in other mojito recipes: pears, raspberries, and oranges.[30] Purees of such fruits may also be used instead of the whole fruit itself. The strawberry mojito includes muddled strawberries;[37] a further departure along these lines substitutes gin for the light rum and lemon juice for lime juice, and adds tonic.[38]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Traditional Mojito recipe from Cuba". Archived from the original on 4 September 2011. Retrieved 1 September 2011.
  2. ^ Colleen Graham; Guide (11 June 2011). " Mojito". Cocktails. Archived from the original on 8 August 2011. Retrieved 1 September 2011.
  3. ^ "Summer Cocktail News: Mojitos Go Fruity". 4 June 2008. Archived from the original on 23 August 2011. Retrieved 1 September 2011.
  4. ^ a b c d Fernandez, Maria Elena (12 August 2001). "Shake It Up, Baby: Cuban Cocktail Is Making a Splash". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 16 May 2017.
  5. ^ Fumi. "How to Muddle a Mojito". Archived from the original on 11 August 2011. Retrieved 1 September 2011.
  6. ^ "Mojito" Nov. 29, 2022)
  7. ^ Staff, Liquor com. "Explore the Mojito's Captivating and Delectable History". Archived from the original on 23 August 2018. Retrieved 8 January 2020.
  8. ^ "The History of the Mojito". TASTE cocktails. 26 July 2015. Retrieved 8 January 2020.
  9. ^ Chowhound. "The (Hotly Debated) History Behind the Mojito". Chowhound. Retrieved 8 January 2020.
  10. ^ "Mojito Cocktail". Retrieved 8 January 2020.
  11. ^ a b c "Tres Famosos Cocteles Celebran Su Día". Havana Club. Archived from the original on 11 July 2020. Retrieved 11 July 2020.
  12. ^ Burkhart, Jeff (2012). Twenty Years Behind Bars: the spirited adventures of a real bartender (1st ed.). PhotoCine Media. ISBN 9780985500115.
  13. ^ Maratos, David (7 July 2010). "How The El Draque Cocktail May Have Helped Britannia Rule The Waves". GoArticles. Archived from the original on 4 March 2016.
  14. ^ Maratos, David (16 June 2012). "The 1st Cocktail, Invented 1586 Was A Medicinal Crude Rum Mix (Article 34)". Archived from the original on 28 September 2012.
  15. ^ a b "Mojito History". Archived from the original on 12 April 2009.
  16. ^ Roberts, Walter Adolphe (1948). Lands of the inner sea, the West Indies and Bermuda. Invitation to travel series. New York: Coward-McCann. p. 21.
  17. ^ Sky juice and flying fish: traditional Caribbean cooking by Jessica B. Harris in 1991
  18. ^ Mojito is derived from the Spanish mojo sauce, which often contains lime juice (see "mojito" at, citing the American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition, 2006, Houghton Mifflin), while mojo is derived from the Spanish verb mojar, meaning "to make wet" (see definition 3 of "mojo" at, citing Webster's New Millennium Dictionary of English, Preview Edition (v 0.9.7), 2003–2007, Lexico Publishing Group, LLC)
  19. ^ Shenton, Will (11 July 2016). "The History of the Mojito". Retrieved 27 September 2016.
  20. ^ "Great American Writers and Their Cocktails". 15 December 2006. Retrieved 5 June 2009.
  21. ^ W. Stock on 8 August 2010 (19 February 2011). "Die ewige Bodeguita". Retrieved 1 September 2011.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: numeric names: authors list (link)
  22. ^ Greene, Philip (2012). To Have and Have Another: A Hemingway Cocktail Companion. Perigee Trade. p. 168. ISBN 978-0399537646.
  23. ^ Menu[permanent dead link], La Bodeguita del Medio, Habana, Cuba in 1959
  24. ^ All around the world cookbook – Page 282 by Sheila Lukins in 1994
  25. ^ "Global cocktail consumption highlights opportunity for British bars and suppliers". International Cocktail Report. CGA Strategy. 13 July 2016. Archived from the original on 29 June 2017. Retrieved 16 May 2017.
  26. ^ "Food: Mojito". The Austin Chronicle. 18 August 2006. Retrieved 1 September 2011.
  27. ^ "Cocktails in the City Comes Back to Manchester". Drinks Enthusiast. 31 March 2016.
  28. ^ Gee, Denise. "Nojito Recipe". Archived from the original on 18 June 2010. Retrieved 1 September 2011.
  29. ^ Petrosky, Maureen (5 September 2016). "Pitcher cocktail for your Labor Day party: sparkling Cojito". The 10-Minute Happy Hour. Kitchn. Archived from the original on 13 June 2017. Retrieved 1 November 2017.
  30. ^ a b c Therapy, Rum (2 April 2013). "10 Mojito Variations".
  31. ^ "What is Demerara Sugar? – Care2 Healthy Living". Healthy Living. Archived from the original on 15 July 2018. Retrieved 4 February 2019.
  32. ^ "Blanco Mojito Drink – Tequila Drink Recipe – Don Julio".
  33. ^ "Mojito de toronja". Perú.com. Archived from the original on 4 June 2019. Retrieved 4 June 2019.
  34. ^ "Mojito de Maracuyá – La Despensa de Don Juan". Archived from the original on 24 April 2019. Retrieved 4 February 2019.
  35. ^ "Foto de Madam Tusan, Lima: Mojito de Maracuya y jugo de Chirimoya, Fresa y Mandarina". TripAdvisor.
  36. ^ "Foto de New York Burger, Lima: Mojito de Maracuya". TripAdvisor.
  37. ^ "Strawberry Mojito". 3 May 2013.
  38. ^ "Strawberry gin mojito". 15 May 2014.

External links[edit]

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