blackberry basil manischewitz mojitos.

Yup. Try saying that three times fast!

Today is Cocktail Friday: The Passover Edition!

I’ve always had a soft spot for Manischewitz, the syrupy-sweet berry flavored wine that’s a staple at any Jewish holiday meal. I had my first taste at a Passover seder when I was about seven, and I’ve been smitten ever since.

As far as I know, there are four different flavors of Manischewitz: blackberry, cherry, concord grape and elderberry. They’re all tasty, but for me, blackberry wins. Always. It tastes just like blackberry jam!

…Although I must say that equal parts blackberry and concord grape is close second. I’ve done quite a few experiments. I consider myself a pioneer in the burgeoning field of Manischewitz wine research. Science!

So. Manischewitz is really sweet stuff. I happen to love it, but I’m a big fan of sweet wines. You can always make like an 80’s housewife and add some seltzer for a nice little Seder Spritzer.

Or, you could make this year’s seder a bit more cosmopolitan and serve these blackberry basil manischewitz mojitos! Look at how fancy you are.

Note: these mojitos aren’t meant at all to replace or stand in for the traditional cups of wine served at a seder! These are much better suited for pre or post seder enjoyment, mmkay?

I’ve replaced the traditional mint in a mojito with basil, because I love the herbaceous, earthy tones it lends to the drink. Fresh blackberries, basil, natural cane sugar and plenty of fresh lime are muddled together and topped off with white rum, Manischewitz and a splash of seltzer for an effervescent finish. Oh yes.

Are you more partial to cherry Manischewitz? That’s cool. Substitute fresh cherries, maybe some kaffir lime leaves and you’ve got yourself a damn fine play on a cherry limeade.

And hey. I should warn you that these blackberry basil Manischewitz mojitos are pretty potent beverages, so feel free to cut back on the amount of rum or add a bit more sugar if need be.

Cheers, lovelies!

Blackberry Basil Manischewitz Mojitos

Yield: 1 mojito

this recipe can easily be doubled, tripled or quadrupled to serve a crowd!


5 fresh blackberries
1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lime juice
1 tablespoon natural cane sugar
5-6 fresh basil leaves, washed and torn
1 ounce white rum
1 ounce Manischewitz blackberry wine
seltzer, to top off


Combine the blackberries, lime juice, sugar and basil in the bottom of a clean high ball glass.

Muddle the ingredients together until the berries have been crushed. You can use the back of a spoon or a muddler.

Add crushed ice halfway up the glass, and add the rum and Manischewitz wine, stirring to combine.

Top off with seltzer, and garnish with a lime wedge.


a food + words original