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Mixing it Up with Hemingway

November 15, 2012

How did we live without this book? And how is it that it had never been written before?

Finally, author Philip Greene gives us To Have and Have Another: A Hemingway Cocktail Companion. The book explores the words of Hemingway through drink. Or does it explore the drinks of Hemingway through his words? Either way, well-read drinkers or well-drunk readers can find recipes and references for fifty Hemingway beverages, from the Negroni (Across the River and Into the Trees) to the Vermouth Cassis (A Moveable Feast, et al).

But the mojito? Drink carefully, literary imbibers. Writes the Washington Post:

Greene, however, has a particular bone to pick with one Cuban drink linked to Hemingway: the mojito. After all, a famous handwritten note hangs in a touristy Havana bar and reads, “My mojito in La Bodeguita, My daiquiri in El Floridita.”

Allegedly the handwriting is Hemingway’s. Greene — whose day job at the Pentagon is as a trademark attorney for the U.S. Marine Corps — is not buying it.

“It annoys me that the mojito is the drink most associated with Hemingway. Yet you will not find the mojito in his prose nor in his letters,” he says.