Kendal's Famous Strawberry Champagne Mojito

Kendal is a bartender. He has worked for 14 years at the Yacht Club. When the job came open to work at the Beach Club, a ritzy oceanside place in the west end of the island, he jumped at the chance. He is originally from the island of Inagua. His twin brother works security at the same place.

We went for a drive out west. The Lovely One went to her gym workout and I went to snorkel for lobster at the reef . I had met this guy carrying spearfishing equipment and three lobsters. He said that he got them at the Orange Hill Reef. It turns out that he was a liar, because I went to the Orange Hill Reef, expecting a nice meal of Lobster Thermidor. The reef was sanded up and I didn't see a single fish -- never mind a lobster. Sadly, I went to pick up the Lovely One at the gym. We wandered across the street to the beach and the Beach Club.

Kendal is the bartender there. He introduced himself, and said that he made an amazing Strawberry Champagne Mojito. The Lovely One and I like mojitos -- a Cuban drink made by mashing up mint leaves with a wooden masher called a muddler. You mash up a goodly amount of mint leaves in the juice of one lime and some white cane sugar syrup. When it is all minty, you add the white rum, and top up with club soda and ice. It is an amazing drink.

Kendal's recipe is a bit different. Instead of white sugar syrup, he used light brown sugar. He adds strawberries to the mint leaves and muddles up all that in lime juice. Then, instead of club soda, he puts in the ice and tops it up with champagne.

It is the perfect drink to quench your thirst, and sit in the sun by the ocean, watching the boats go by in the emerald and robin's egg blue seas. The gulls fly past the whitecaps as the waves come over the reef and the tang of the salt air makes you glad that you are alive. Sitting by the surf in this archipelago cast like pearls in the sunny seas makes me feel like this day is significant for me. And Kendal's ambrosia just added to the experience. It was great to be alive.

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