The Caipirinha is a tasty and refreshing Brazilian cocktail that has become a favorite of beach bars and tropical resorts around the globe. Pronounced kai-purr-REEN-yah, the cocktail is the national drink of Brazil and draws close similarities to an Old Fashioned. Like an Old Fashioned, a Caipirinha is made by muddling a single spirit with fruit and sugar. Instead of whiskey, as is the case for an Old Fashioned, a Caipirinha is made with a type of liquor called cachaça (pronounced cah-CHA-za).
Cachaça is often referred to as Brazilian rum, even though this isn't exactly accurate. While rum is distilled from the sugarcane by-product molasses, cachaça is distilled from fresh sugarcane juices. The difference gives cachaça a taste that is natural, earthy and subtly sweet. It also goes exceptionally well with lime, the other main ingredient in a Caipirinha. If you're wondering where you can get your hands on cachaça, fear not. One of the most popular brands of cachaça is called Leblon, which comes in a greenish bottle and can be found at your local liquor store.
While the recipe for this cocktail is quite simple, it's a bit more hands on than others in terms of actually making it. The nice part is you don't need a shaker, as the cocktail is made right in the serving glass. However, you do need a muddler and bar spoon.
Here's the recipe:
- 2 oz Cachaça
- 1 half of a Lime
- 2 teaspoons brown sugar
Cut a lime in half, then cut that half of a lime into four wedges. Combine the four lime wedges in a rocks glass with the brown sugar. Muddle lime and sugar until the sugar is completely dissolved. Then, add the cachaça to the glass and stir contents twenty times. Finally, fill up the glass with ice and stir contents twenty more times. Garnish with a lime wheel (as pictured above).