“Mojito” is the drink generally connected with Cuba, and this fame makes it perhaps the most requested drink in Cuban bars. In spite of this, there are always some lucky ones who succeed in discovering a very special drink: “Canchánchara”.
The sonorous name of this cocktail already announces how much Cuban-ness it contains. The drink is considered a symbol of the ancient, World Heritage village of Trinidad. But the habit of consuming this drink goes back several centuries, and although the passing of time has changed the way it is drunk, it has remained in the preference of many.
Thee story goes that the 19th century mambises (Cuban independence fighters) prepared a special mixture in order to maintain body heat and avoid breathing damage. The tasty balsam consisted of sugar cane rum, bee honey and lemon juice. In those days it was a hot drink, served in a güira tree shell.
In our days water is added to taste and some ice cubes to make the drink more refreshing and tempting in the midst of the Caribbean heat.
The combination of rum and lemon refreshes the throat, producing a very light but highly energizing burn. Honey, on the other hand, grants the cocktail a peculiar flavor, leaving a pleasant, sweet taste that delights consumers.
This is so much so that whoever travels to Trinidad cannot fail to visit the tavern La Canchánchara. In this big colonial house, in addition to the Island’s traditional music, the guests enjoy the exquisite drink, served in earthen pots that recall those used by the mambises.
In recent times the drink is consumed particularly east of the country, where it is very popular at home due to its easy preparation. The quantities of the ingredients, which may vary according to preference, are: 0.5 oz of honey, 0.5 oz of lemon juice, 1.5 oz of rum, 1 oz of natural water and 2 oz of cube ice.
Honey and lemon juice are mixed together until the honey is dissolved. Rum is added (after pouring a drink on the saints), then ice and finally water. It suffices to stir it once more and the drink is ready to be savored.