The summer may be winding down, but don’t put the blender away just yet. And if you’re ready to take a break from the season’s ubiquitous frosé? We’ve got a drink for you. The Frojito is the frozen mojito you need right now. Bartenders can get a little cynical about the mojito, but are you really telling us that mint, rum, and lime don’t taste great together? And don’t taste even better when whizzed up into a slush?
This souped-up frozen mojito is the creation of Chris Amirault, bar director of Otium in downtown Los Angeles. “I think a well-made mojito is pretty delicious,” he says, in choosing it as a starting point for a clever frozen drink. In Amirault’s version, pineapple rum joins the traditional white rum. “I wouldn’t call this drink subtle,” he says. Pineapple, mint, and lime all come through loud and clear. “It pops you right in the mouth but doesn’t exhaust your palate.”
That pineapple rum is the key ingredient. Most flavored rums are a little suspect—we’re looking at you, coconut rums that smell like sunscreen—but bartender favorite Plantation took real care in crafting their pineapple rum.
“Plantation is one of the go-to rum houses for craft bars looking for well-priced rums,” Amirault explains. “This one is a collaboration with cocktail historian David Wondrich, and I really dig their process. They infuse dark rum with pineapples for three months and then blend that with a rum distillate made from macerated pineapples.” The resulting rum is fresh and delicious, with the pineapple flavor genuine and unmistakable.
In the Frojito, he cuts that pineapple rum with dry Panamanian rum Caña Brava, to keep the drink from getting too sweet. “This is LA, after all”—no one’s after a sugary cocktail. “The split base allows us to dry out the cocktail slightly, and brings great balance.”
Why a blended mojito, rather than the classic? “The mint gets macerated into the drink, the same way the pineapple is macerated into the rum,” he says. And, of course, there’s the obvious appeal of a summer slush.
How best to enjoy a Frojito? “Ideally get a cabana somewhere, and put your toes in the sand,” says Amirault. “But I like to think about this drink as if it were a Corona commercial—having one of these is like finding your own beach.” Cheers to that.
Otium’s Frojito Recipe
Amirault blends up this drink with eight Kold Draft ice cubes—the bartender gold standard, 1-¼” cubes—which works out to about a cup and a half of cubes loosely packed in a measuring cup.
1 ounce Caña Brava rum
1 ounce Plantation Pineapple rum
1 ounce fresh lime juice
¾ ounce simple syrup
8 mint leaves
Instructions: Combine all ingredients in a blender and blend until slushy. Garnish with a mint sprig.
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