The history of mint reads like a scandal sheet, rife with tales of adultery, hush money and insobriety. Mint was named for the nymph Minthe who was the girlfriend of Pluto, the King of Hades. When Pluto’s wife Persephone learned of their trysts, she threw Minthe to the ground and trampled her fragile body. Pluto, who wielded great powers in matters pertaining to the afterlife, arranged for her to live on as mint.
In biblical times, mint was used to pay taxes and was often paid to corrupt members of the religious sects as a means of absolving sins and currying worldly favor. Mint met it’s undoing in the New World in the mid-nineteenth century when the popularity of the Mint Julep raised alarms bells with the Women’s Christian Temperance Union who campaigned for uprooting every bed of mint in the union.
We celebrate the arrival of mint in late April, and have fun using it in our bistro and spa all summer long. We grow Peppermint and Spearmint (the ancient mint) in our Bistro gardens, and outside our Yellow Barn Suite entrance is our favorite patch of gentle spearmint – perfect for bistro garnishes, mojito’s and the infamous Mint Julep.