Sometimes the amateur mixologist is called upon to prepare cocktails for an outing, such as a picnic, road trip, or camping trip. Since you cannot have your entire bar available in such circumstances, it is necessary to plan and prepare in advance. In particular, some items can and should be pre-mixed, while others need to remain separate. Further, it’s important to have the right containers – for example, on a backpacking trip it is crucial to keep the weight down, whereas on a raft trip the weight is not important but you cannot bring any glass.
I’ll illustrate with what I did for a recent raft trip with some friends (we floated the upper Green River from Flaming Gorge dam, since you asked). As has now become typical, the cocktails were my responsibility. Since it would be hot and we were going to be on the water, I chose Mojitos. I started by preparing Mint Simple Syrup with 1/2 cup water and 1/2 cup sugar. I juiced one medium lime, and with the syrup still warm in the saucepan, added the juice. However much that came out to (probably about 3/4 cup), I added twice as much rum (so 1.5 cups). I used Flor de Cana in this case, which is a dark rum and a fun variation for Mojitos.
This constituted the primary mix, and I stored it in a metal water bottle (shown in the photo). I also brought three other items on the trip: another whole lime, a packaged (plastic) bottle of club soda, and mint. As it turns out, our hosts had brought fresh mint from their garden, so we had plenty and it added a nice touch.
When we arrived at cocktail hour at camp, I first cut the lime into eighths. I put about two ounces of the mix in each glass, added ice and a piece of lime, and muddled briefly with a fork. Then I filled with club soda, stirred, and added a mint sprig. You can see the result in the photo. There were four of us, so this was enough for two rounds. Very civilized.
We were all quite relaxed by dinner time, but it wasn’t so much that we started talking about politics or religion. Instead, we had a nice wine with dinner and I fell asleep in my camp chair. It’s ok, people have low expectations of bartenders as long as they deliver tasty cocktails.