Recalling porch side summer nights and backyard barbecues, the mint julep is a classic Southern favorite. Famously known as the signature drink of the Kentucky Derby, mint juleps live or die by the quality of your ingredients. Make sure to use a top-shelf bourbon and fresh spearmint for best results.
Mojitos will never die. Initially created as a cure for scurvy by sailors aboard famed explorer Sir Francis Drake’s “Bonaventure,” mojitos have been a part of cocktail culture before the word even existed. Naturally, this makes it hard to create a mojito that truly stands out, but mashing some fresh blueberries alongside your mint is a great start. Save some fresh berries for garnish and serve with a steady hand.
- Pro Tip: Not a fan of blueberries? Try using strawberries or blackberries instead!
Perhaps the only cocktail that can give a mojito a run for its money, the old cuban expands upon its predecessor by adding Prosecco and angostura bitters. Together, the two add a bubbly, aromatic finish that makes the drink a perfect warm weather sipper.
Born out of Long Island’s historic Southside Sportsman’s club in the latter half of the 19th century, the southside is essentially a gin-forward take on a mint julep. Naturally, this cocktail is a bit more herbal and aromatic than a mint julep, but that doesn’t make it any less delicious.
Strawberry Rhubarb Smash
This cocktail works with the delightful combination of strawberries, rhubarb, and mint to create a crisp, complex cocktail. Rather than add rhubarb pieces to this drink, try infusing the veggie into a simple syrup to create a sour-tinged sweetener. Top with fresh mint leaves and rhubarb stalks for some serious aesthetic points.
Fairly unique in the tiki world, the shipwreck combines rum and bourbon for a nice interplay of strong and syrupy flavors. The cooling qualities of mint really bring the cocktail together though, bringing much needed sweetness to this vacation in a glass.