Shaken or blended? Sour or sweet? Where and with what to begin your summer cocktail season? “Blast” samplers have done the research across county-favorite bars and restaurants and have decided to crown a classic – the mojito – as our inaugural drink of the week. But this is not your average mojito. Bartender Judy Conway of The Wharf in Wildwood has brought a new level of freshness to an already refreshing cocktail. Conway trims two types of mint from her personal home garden before each shift and places them in a glass on the bar upon her arrival. When asked for a drink recommendation, Conway suggests her signmature mojito, grabs the mixer, some leaves of her homegrown mint, and the essential rum. For a fruity twist, ask Judy to substitute with her mango rum. Shaken perfectly with just the right amount of mint blended into the sweet cocktail, Judy’s mango mojito is finished off with a sprig of her freshly-picked mint. Strong enough to take the edge off but unbelievably refreshing, the mango mojito is a real treat.
To sample another of Judy’s fresh-herb cocktails, go for the Bloody Sunday Bloody Mary. With the basic ingredients of vodka and tomato juice, Judy adds homegrown basil leaves and rosemary to give the cocktail a special kick. After it is mixed, the Bloody Sunday Bloody Mary is garnished with a kebab of shrimp, olive, a jalapeno, and red and green peppers. Kick off the official summer season at the shore with a fresh-herb based cocktail and awaken your taste buds for the coming months!
By Megan Kummer