The Grasshopper Cocktail

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When it comes to cocktails, women generally prefer colorful mixed drinks with sweet and fruity flavors; such is the Grasshopper cocktail, a fresh and minty after dinner cocktail. Perfect all year-round but especially in the summer, this cocktail is great for outdoor parties, where you can enjoy its freshness and striking color in the sunlight. It name was inspired, obviously, by the color, which resembles that of a grasshopper, and which is given by one of its main ingredients, the creme de menthe.

We don’t know too much about its origins or who invented it first, but most stories claim it was invented at the Tujague Bar, a very famous location in New Orleans, Louisiana, somewhere in the middle of the French Quarter. The South is known for its cool and refreshing beverages and libations prepared with ice and mint, which are ideal for the high temperatures and the warm summer climate. The Mint Julep is an example, only it is a traditional beverage there. As for the Grasshopper cocktail, it too gained popularity, especially during the 1950s and 1960s not only in New Orleans, but everywhere in the American South.

Because its ingredients can be easily found in bars across the world, you can probably serve it anywhere you like. And if the bartender there doesn’t know how to prepare it, then you can teach them, using the following official IBA recipe:

  • 30 ml creme de Menthe
  • 30 ml creme de Cacao
  • 30 ml fresh cream

The preparation is very simple, and anyone can do it: the creme the menthe, the creme de cacao and the fresh cream are poured into a shaker which has been previously filled with ice. The mixture is well shaken, and then strained into a chilled cocktail glass. However, the drink may be served in other types of glasses as well, such as a Collins or an old fashioned. While the garnish is not mandatory, one may add a few leaves of fresh mint, or coat the edges of the glass with powdered cocoa.

There are also several variations of the Grasshopper cocktail, such as the Flying Grasshopper – also called Vodka Grasshopper -, where the fresh cream is replaced with vodka. Because the original recipe is not very potent in alcohol, some may prefer to add tougher spirits, which is why variations like this appeared. One can also order a Brown Grasshopper, which contains the additional coffee – not in the rough form, but prepared. This particular recipe may also work with the cocoa garnish, or even with coffee on the rims instead.

Because it is so versatile, some prefer to look at this cocktail like a dessert, which is how the Frozen Grasshopper appeared; this libation contains mint ice cream next to the other ingredients, so it becomes more dessert than cocktail. Other variations include the Green Genie which is made from creme de caramel, creme de menthe and vodka infused with jasmine. In states like Wisconsin, they consume lots of mixed drinks where they replace the cream with ice creams; their version of the Grasshopper contains ingredients like creme de menthe, milk and mint chocolate chip ice cream.

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