Summer Cocktails: Mojito Bar

Make your party tropical with signature mojitos

Mojito signature drink

A mojito is a classic summertime cocktail made with fresh mint, sugar, lime, rum and topped with soda water.  There are thousands of variations including the addition of berries, herbs, fruit, and dark rum to make this refreshing drink a fun signature beverages for weddings and parties.  While working in popular bars, my fellow bartenders and I used to joke about the “mojito effect” – as soon as one person orders a mojito, everyone else has to have one!

How to set up a mojito bar

Mojito bars are fun for small parties.  Much like a bloody mary bar, mojito bars allow your guests to personalize their cocktail by adding extra flavors and fun garnishes.  Plus, mojito bars take pressure off you, the host, so you can relax without worrying about keeping glasses full.

Step one: Batch mojitos before the party.  Use a measuring cup and a large pitcher to mix: 2 cups silver rum, 3/4 cup fresh squeezed lime juice, and 3/4 cup simple syrup (equal parts sugar and water).  Stir and store in the refrigerator until ready to serve.

Step two: Set up your mojito station.   Provide collins glasses (tall thin ones), several bunches of fresh mint, muddlers, bar spoons, and sparkling water.  For that extra flare put out fresh berries, clove, fresh ground ginger, fresh tropical juices, black pepper.  This will give your guests seemingly endless mojito combinations.

Step three: Right before your guests arrive put out ice with a scoop and the batched pitcher.  I also recommend a few towels, just in case.  If you really want to give it that extra flare, add cute signs and instructions to guide your guests through the process.

Step four: For an added bit of fun, encourage your guests to write down their favorite recipes and vote for a crowd favorite at the end of the party.

Our favorite Mojito recipe

If you are looking for a fun twist on a classic mojito, below is our recipe for a Tahoe wilderness foraged mojito.  Keep an eye out near water sources, you might get lucky and find a good supply of wild mint growing.  Only harvest what you need, and take only a few leaves from the tip of the stalk.

Blackberry & Fir Tahoe Mojito

This twist on a mojito features summer plants foraged in Lake Tahoe’s wilderness

  • 2 oz Silver Rum
  • 1/2 oz Fresh Lime Juice
  • 3/4 oz Fir Tip Simple Syrup (We prefer organic raw sugar)
  • 1 sprig Fresh Mint
  • 2 oz Sparkling Soda
  • 3 Blackberries
  1. Put a small bunch of mint and 2 blackberries in a shaker tin.  Add rum, lime juice, fir tip simple syrup (see recipe below), and 1 scoop ice.  Hard shake for 5 seconds.
  2. Using a strainer, pour mixture into a collins glass.  Fill glass to top with ice, and then top with sparkling soda.  Use a bar spoon to give the mixture a quick stir.
  3. Garnish with a sprig of mint and a fresh cut lime wedge.

Fir Tip Simple Syrup

  1. Make fir tip simple syrup by collecting fresh fir tips.  Wash and rise thoroughly, then chop into small pieces.  Boil 1 cup hot water, and add chopped tips as through you were making tea.  Let cook on mid-low for 2 minutes.  Turn off stove and let seep for an additional 10 minutes.
  2. Strain the tea using a mesh strainer to collect all fir pieces. Return fir flavored water to pot. Add 1 cup sugar and stir until sugar has completely dissolved. Let syrup cool. Store in a sealed container in refrigerator until ready to use. Good for up to 2 months if stored properly.

Photo credits

All photos for this article were taken for a collaborate photoshoot with Tahoe & Reno based event businesses.  Credit goes to:  Gagewood Photography, Twine & Dandy Florist, Forget Me Knot Events & Designs, @cohen_creates Stationary, Sierra Water Gardens Venue, Lucky Burro Specialty Glassware Rentals, @boxnrender Wood Boards.  Please contact us with any questions, or check them out online!

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