Building a Better Grasshopper

The grasshopper is a classic sweet cocktail that, typically, sucks. If you order it at a bar, you’ll get a concoction made from bad green creme de menthe, worse white creme de cacao, and cream or half and half. It will be undrinkably sweet, but to make up for being too sweet it will also taste bad.

The mystifying thing about the grasshopper is that it should be good. Chocolate and mint is a great combination. So we here at Tea Leaves have come up with an alternative recipe that is, we think, infinitely better.


Put all ingredients in a cocktail shaker with lots of ice and shake vigorously for 30 seconds. Pour and serve. You’ll end up with something that looks like cocoa, but tastes like a mint sundae. This, it turns out, is not a bad thing.

The goal here was to avoid using crème de cacao, which is always, under all circumstances, disgusting. When I conceived of using cocoa powder as a replacement, I was fairly sure that it couldn’t possibly work. “The cocoa powder won’t dissolve,” I thought, “it’ll be all grainy, and if it does dissolve it will just precipitate right out.” At least in my test run tonight, that didn’t happen. The texture was pleasantly thick without being sludgy or grainy. As for precipitation, all I can say we ended up drinking this so quickly that it wasn’t a problem. You will end up with a residue on the glass which could, I guess, offend the delicate sensibilities of your friends.

If that happens, you need new friends.