Which Mint is "Yerba Buena"?
Answered by: Conrad Richter
Question from: Tom Bartlett
Posted on: April 02, 2004

I’m sure I’m not the first to ask. It is said that the proper mint to make mojitos is called "yerba buena". I’ve done much web seaching to try to find seeds, to no avail. Richters has a huge inventory of mints, unlike anyplace I’ve found. Yet none listed as yerba buena. Might yerba buena be one of the mints you already list, or is this a product you don’t carry? Any ideas how I’d obtain either young plants or seeds?

"Yerba buena" (Spanish for "good herb") refers to several different plants. The name is most commonly used to refer to spearmint (Mentha spicata), but it is also used to refer to a relative of mint, Satureja douglasii. The latter is a trailing plant with mint-scented leaves. We carried it in the past but this year we do not have it.

I am not sure which "yerba buena" is the one needed for mojitas but my guess is that spearmint is the one. Spearmint is widely grown in Mexico. But there are many varieties of spearmint, each with slightly different tastes, so you may have to try several to get exactly what you want. I would start with the regular spearmint and the improved spearmint because these among all the spearmint varieties have the most typical spearmint taste.

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