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December 2011 Issue
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Snojitos – Christmas cheer

Everyone loves the Christmas and New Year period – a time to get together with friends, celebrate the year’s achievements and wipe the slate clean for the incoming calendar. But for trampers it’s much more important than that, it’s the biggest cluster of public holidays for the year: time to head into the hills!

Rather than seeing in the New Year by oohing and ahhing at the fireworks down town, I’ll try to get as far away from civilisation as possible and spend the evening with a few good friends watching the sun set and the stars come out. But it’s nice to bring a bit of the celebration along too.

That’s where the idea for the snojito (pronounced snow-heat-o) came from. Typically there’s still snow around New Zealand’s mountain passes in early summer (and often snow falling out of the sky). With a little preparation, you can use it as Mother Nature’s perfect cocktail ingredient.


350ml white rum*

20 tsp brown sugar

350ml lime juice

1 handful fresh mint (finely chopped)

10 cups of clean snow or glacier ice

4 teaspoons of baking soda (optional)

*The quantity of rum is up to you but remember: you’ve got to walk out tomorrow!


Mix one shot (35ml) of white rum, one shot of lime juice and two teaspoons of brown sugar together in a tall glass. Slowly add in snow while stirring to produce a slushy consistency. Add in the mint then decorate with a sprig of mint and a paper umbrella and enjoy…in moderation.

If you’re using ice instead of snow and would like to make them fizzy, you can add in a tiny bit of baking soda (tiny is the key here, you can always add a bit more later) which will react with the lime juice to produce carbon dioxide – backcountry soda water. It’ll also give it a slightly salty, margarita-ish taste so you don’t want to over do it.