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Mint Washing: The Expert Touch Your Cocktails Have Been Missing

mint-washing technique

Here’s something pretty cool that's popping up in the cocktail scene lately: mint washing. It sounds like a fancy term, but it's actually a simple and clever way to jazz up your drinks. Picture this: you're in a swanky bar, and instead of the usual muddled mint in your cocktail, you get this incredibly smooth, subtly minty flavour. That's mint washing for you.
 
Breaking Down Mint Washing
 
So what's the deal with mint washing? It's a technique where you infuse your spirit—like rum or gin—with mint. But instead of just chucking in some mint leaves and calling it a day, you go a bit more high-tech. You start with an oleo saccharum, which is just a fancy way of saying sugar mixed with mint leaves and stems. This mix gets cosy with your spirit in a process called 'rum wash.' The catch? You've got to keep everything cold to avoid ending up with a drink that tastes like you're licking a mint leaf.
 
Why Mint Washing Makes Bartenders Smile
 
Here's the thing: muddling mint is a classic move, but it can be hit or miss. Too often, you end up with a drink that feels overwhelmingly minty or, even worse, with bits of mint leaves stuck everywhere. Mint washing lets you sidestep all that. It infuses your spirit with a subtle, smooth mint flavour. It’s like your spirit just had a relaxing spa day with mint.

mint-washing
 
Meet the &thesea: A Minty Remix
 
Over at Bird in Copenhagen, Peter Altenburg is shaking things up with his Mojito twist called the &thesea. Instead of going the muddle route, he’s using mint-washed rum and mint-infused vermouth. It's a quieter, more elegant way to do mint, perfect for a place that’s as much about the tunes as it is about the drinks.
 
The Versatility of Mint Washing
 
But don't think mint washing is a one-trick pony. It’s not just for mojitos. Picture a bourbon-based cocktail with a hint of mint—it's like the bourbon went on a refreshing holiday. Or a gin cocktail that whispers mint instead of shouting it. Mint washing is your ticket to a world where mint is a background singer, not the main act.

DIY Mint Washing

And guess what? Mint washing isn't some exclusive bartender secret. It's totally doable at home. Grab some mint, sugar and your spirit of choice, and play around. It’s a fun way to add a twist to your homemade cocktails without needing a bunch of fancy tools.

mint-washing technique
 
In short, mint washing is a game-changer for those who love a touch of mint without going overboard. It’s about subtlety and sophistication in your glass. So next time you're mixing drinks, why not give mint washing a whirl? You might just find it's the refreshing twist you've been looking for.

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