Looking for a new cocktail to try out this weekend? Want to wind down with a fresh new drink? We’ve got you covered. Here’s what you should drink this weekend.

With the weather seriously heating up this summer, we thought it was appropriate to cool off with an extremely refreshing cocktail that has started to gain a bit of popularity here in the states. The Caipirinha is a beloved cocktail from Brazil perfect for the warm weather and features the relatively obscure liquor Cachaça, which happens to be the national spirit of Brazil. Cachaça is a spirit distilled from fermented sugar cane juice and can be either aged or unaged. The end result is sort of a distant cousin of rum, though the flavor profile tends to be much grassier, earthier, and overall more complex.

The Caipirinha itself was invented in Brazil as a Cachaça concoction. The origins of the drink are murky with some claiming it was a medicinal beverage while others say it was invented in the late 1800s by Brazilian sugarcane farmers. Whatever the case, it is a delicious cocktail that is sure to cool you off on hot summer days. And, as it only features three ingredients, it’s a remarkably simple cocktail to make though the build is slightly unique.

Caipirinha Ingredients

Cachaça – As mentioned above this particular sugarcane spirit is sometimes lumped in together with Caribbean rum but it is very much its own liquor. Distilled from fermented sugarcane juice (rather than molasses), Cachaça has a uniquely grassy flavor profile with a complex wood characteristic that varies among aged Cachaças. The growing interest in this cocktail has led to the import of Cachaça though there might still be slim pickings. If you can find it, we’d recommend Leblon Cachaça or Novo Fogo Aged Cachaça.

Limes – As you’ll be muddling lime wedges in this cocktail, you’ll need some good fresh limes – no store-bought lime juice. Make sure you have a pretty sizeable lime to get a good citrus kick in this cocktail. The size of your lime wedges is a personal preference but quartering it is a pretty solid option.

Sugar – While many cocktails call for simple syrup, you’re going to want to use actual sugar crystals. We’d recommend a pretty fine sugar and you could even make a whole sugar cube work. The sugar when combined with the limes will help bring out some of that sharp lime juice as well as the oils found in the peel.

Caipirinha Recipe

  1. Cut one lime into wedges, add to a double rocks glass with one tablespoon of sugar, and gently muddle.
  2. Add two ounces of Cachaça, fill the glass with ice, and gently stir.
  3. Garnish with a lime wedge.
  4. Enjoy!

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