First let me say I am guilty as anyone of sacrificing the esthetics of a drink over the practicality of drinking it. I have done horrible things to make a drink look beautiful and more appealing just to get noticed.
I've "peacocked" it up more times than I can remember. Setting down the drink and strutting around with an ear bent waiting to hear "oh wow, that looks amazing" only to be shot down a few minutes later with the sound of "phhht, phhht, phhht". The sound of someone desperately trying to spit out or dislodge the tiny bits of mint, kiwis, basil or any other leafy herb or fruit I selfishly tore up and served in one of my pretty cocktails.
The truth is that's annoying and only serves to make the drink bitter and difficult to drink.
The Mojito is the biggest offender by a wide margin in bars all over the country. Bartenders think that by tearing up the mint hey will, by making more pieces, increase the flavor exponentially. More pieces, more mint flavor. WRONG WRONG WRONG! You are not increasing the volume of mint or the amount of oil that mint releases. You are just making more of a mess! By introducing large chunks of matter you are only creating speed bumps for the guest. Since more cocktails are served with straws, you are just "plugging up" the delivery system! Clogging the pipe of deliciousness you just spent time creating.
Please stop adding chopped fruit or herbs to your cocktails. You can include them while mixing, stirring and shaking but make sure you strain them out. They are not going to continue giving up flavor in the time it takes to drink the cocktail. Use them as a garnish on the rim or on a toothpick so the guest can enjoy them when THEY want to, not when they pop a blood vessel trying to suck them up through a straw!
The Havana Club mojito straight from Mother Cuba! Leave the mint on the stalk!
Would you want to drink this through a straw?
Some things just piss me off! ha. ( stepping down off my soapbox)