Raffa’s Mojitos

January 9, 2012

Wake, eat, surf, sleep, mojito, surf, mojito, eat, sleep.

This was our day to day while we were in Nicaragua. And it is absolutely not a vicious cycle. In fact, I truly cannot imagine a more relaxing one, one that makes your body feel more alive, hungry, curious, and in touch. I do have evidence that this perceived degree of “connectedness” with the wave, and the world, starts to get a bit, er, more muddled, the greater the number of mojitos you put into the pattern. For instance, we practiced the following once or twice, admittedly:

Wake, eat, surf, sleep, mojito, mojito, surf, mojito, eat, mojito, mojito, sleep.

I consider myself to be a connoisseur of mojitos. And therefore I say with no reserve that those that I had at Soma were the best. EVER. They are so amazing, actually, that I don’t exactly know how to describe them, or where to start. Endlessly smooth, (thanks to local rum.) Just lemony/limey enough, and over-the-moon fresh. Not too sweet, but sugar-rimmed. No hunks of mint to choke your straw. No crystals of turbinado to chew or blow your palate. But, somehow, the mint, and the sugar, and the lime all made it into each sip anyway. So simple, and yet so perfect they seem untouchable. There was nothing better after rolling in the surf, than coming home to a sunset and a mojito.

It took a bit of begging, but this recipe was one of the prized treasures I brought home in my suitcase, shared with care by the Mojito Master, Raffa, whose big smile and gentle demeanor made the delivery of your drink at least as enjoyable as the delivery through the straw to your belly. Raffa blends his mojitos, rather than muddling them, which means that you get tiny bits of mint and lime in each sip. He also never used sugar crystals, and instead mixed his own sugar water so that the crystals would never sit at the bottom of the glass – they would just perch around the rim. Once we got the recipe home, I used agave nectar instead of sugar water; I love the result.

I promised him that we would credit him, always, for the recipe, and the technique, and that we would return soon enough to enjoy his craft at his hand – that this was just a way of keeping our experience alive. He obliged, and so will we.

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1 Comment

  • Reply Evan January 13, 2012 at 11:44 am

    Use a pairing knife to cut off the rind off the limes wedges down to the pith before tossing then in the glass. this helps remove the last hint of bitterness from your garnish while keeping the structure (although not nearly as visually appetizing).

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