Mocktails & Shocktails

Mocktails & Shocktails Melisa Lapido

Melisa Lapido

How did you become a mixologist?
Having worked in the bar industry for over 10 years, I was fortunate enough to hone my craft and learn important lessons about every aspect of bar management. But nothing gripped me like bartending. As soon as I started fixing drinks I fell in love with the skill, craft and intelligence behind recipe creation and execution, and wanted to learn more and more.

What do you love about making cocktails?
Balancing flavors and exploring different combinations, because that's how you find out what works and what can work better. I find that mocktail recipes are really rewarding to create, because to mimic a classic cocktail's flavor after removing alcohol from the recipe is a real challenge. I also love riffing with old school classics like the Piña Colada, Mojito or Daiquiri and doing things a little differently. Some say 'if it isn't broken then don't fix it', but where's the fun in that?.

What's the best rum cocktail recipe for beginners?
The Mojito. An absolute classic serve with a simple rum recipe. And, even if you don't make the perfect mix, it still tastes like lying on warm sand in the hot Caribbean sun. It's an iconic rum serve that all beginners should respect and is great to learn and to master. If low ABV cocktails are your thing, take a look at my healthy mocktail Mojito below. No rum, same great taste and perfect for Dry January.

Mocktails & Shocktails Melisa Lapido

Melisa Lapido

Ormond Beach, Florida, USA

15+ years experience in bar service,
bartending & bar management

Favorite Cocktail:

Old Fashioned - a true classic that never goes
out of style and is great to linger over.

What's your favorite Waterford glass?
I'm in love with the new Mixology Rum collection, especially the Circon Tumbler and the Cicron Large Coupe. To me, the design of these glasses is sheer perfection. The circles around the base feel brilliant in your hand, and the typical generous weight of these Waterford glasses really elevates the occasion.

What are the upcoming cocktail trends?
People are more health-conscious now, and that's given rise to low ABV and non alcoholic cocktails. I don't think that will change in the near future - mocktail recipes are here to stay. I also think people are really enjoying simple cocktails more now. People don't want to spend hours in the kitchen mixing lengthy and complicated cocktails; they want simple cocktail recipes that contain easy and accessible ingredients, with lots of fresh fruits to elevate the colors.

Double old fashioned Mixology glass

Melisa's Mocktails & Shocktails

Kiwi Mojito Mocktail

  • In a cocktail shaker, crush together 1 peeled kiwi and 8 mint leaves and 2tbsp of simple syrup
  • Add lime juice, then fill your shaker with ice cubes and shake
  • Strain into a highball glass over crushed ice and garnish with slices of fresh kiwi and mint.
Melisa Lapido - Kiwi Mojito Mocktail

Rum Old Fashioned

  • Place a sugar cube into a cocktail shaker
  • Add 2 dashes of Angostura bitters, 2 dashes of orange bitters, a splash of water and an orange and lemon peel
  • Crush the ingredients and then add 2 oz of aged rum
  • Fill the shaker with ice cubes and stir
  • Strain into a tumbler over fresh crushed ice and garnish with an orange wedge and a cherry.
Melisa Lapido - Rum Old Fashioned

Raspberry Tai

  • In a cocktail shaker, crush 7-8 raspberries with a handful of 3-4 fresh mint leaves
  • Add ½ oz of orgeat syrup, ½ oz of Curacao and 1 oz of dark rum and 1 oz of light rum
  • Fill your shaker with ice, attach a lid and shake
  • Garnish with a lime wegde, mint bouquet and a raspberry.
Melisa Lapido - Raspberry Tai

Watermleon Daiquiri

  • In a cocktail shaker, crush 6 chunks of fresh watermelon
  • Add 3 oz of light rum, 1 oz of lavender syrup and 1 ½ oz of fresh lime juice
  • Fill your shaker with ice, attach a lid and shake
  • Strain into a coupe, garnish with a viola petal and enjoy.
Melisa Lapido - Watermleon Daiquiri

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