Moscato Mojito

 
Call it a Moscato Julep if you like.
Mojito or julep...Almost the same thing really.
This is perfect for a hot summer evening on the deck, and I am sincerely hoping that this day is winding up to be just that kind of day.  Sun is shining and it's looking good for the second day of Summer in the Northwest!

Very, very simple and delicious with only 2, maybe 3, ingredients.
I know it's kind of weird to put mint in wine... but you have to admit, putting mint in whiskey or rum is kinda different too. I've never liked "real" mojitos, they taste too tooth-pastey (that's my own word).  This is fruity, naturally sweet wonderfulness with a great mint accent.
Perfect for hanging with your sister, friend or honey on the deck.

The hardest part of this recipe is "muddling" the mint.  Really, muddling is really just smashing up the mint to release the essential oils, and hopefully break it up into some tiny pieces too.  I find it easiest to muddle herbs with a little sharp crushed ice and a large handle wooden spoon if you don't have an official muddler tool. Mine is pictured below.


No official recipe here... just some ratio suggestions.
Bottle of Moscato
1/2 cup of mint leaves
1/2 lime (optional)

Drop about 10-15 fresh mint leaves into the bottom of a cocktail shaker, and top with about 1/3 cup crushed ice.  Only ice cubes?  Put them in a ziploc bag and smack them with the bottom of a heavy pan! Viola, crushed ice!

Now, muddle the mint and crushed ice together until you are seeing some breaking up of the mint into small pieces.  Don't worry about it too much, you are getting the mint flavor.  
Add more crushed ice and about HALF the moscato you intend to serve.  
Cover and shake gently.
Why gently?
Well, as you may have already noticed, some moscato is quite bubbly and tends to explode in the shaker.  Ask me how I know... ?  
Pour into wine glasses, add more moscato.  Garnish with another sprig of mint and serve.
I like it with a squeeze of lime, which adds a bit of zip and freshness, but it's totally up to you.

Enjoy, and welcome to Summer!