The Old Cuban was first crafted at the famed Pegu Club in New York City by owner-bartender Audrey Saunders. Conceived of as an upscale variation on the Mojito, the Old Cuban (a mix of rum, bitters, simple syrup and lime juice topped with champagne) is a versatile drink—i.e., the rum and champagne combination works as well in the summer as it does on December 31.
- 1.5 oz. 12-year-old Appleton Estate Jamaican rum
- 1 oz. 1:1 simple syrup
- ¾ oz. lime juice
- 6 mint leaves
- 2 dashes Angostura bitters
- 2 oz. chilled champagne or dry sparkling wine
Shake all ingredients—save for the champagne—with ice in a cocktail shaker. Double-strain into a chilled cocktail glass and top with two ounces of champagne. Garnish with a small mint sprig.
Photo by David L. Reamer