Global Sips: Caipirinha

Posted on July 27, 2013 by Kirsten Read | 1 Comment

Thirsty for an exotic drink? Caipirinha (pronounced kai-pee-reen-ya) is Brazil's national cocktail, and their most common distilled alcoholic beverage. 

First thing’s first: It’s not a caipirinha without Cachaça (kuh-sha-suh), a sweet Brazilian rum-like liquor made from sugarcane juice. This traditional spirit was most likely first produced back in the 1500s when sugar cane was introduced to the region. To make it healthier, you could cut back on the sugar, but other than that it's as a pretty simple, healthier option. 

There are many stories about the caipirinha's origin. The best known is one that begins around 1918, in the state of São Paulo. According to information, the caipirinha as we know it today would have been created from a popular recipe made with lemon, garlic and honey, indicated for patients of Spanish flu - and which, today, is still used to scare small colds. As it was quite common to put a little alcohol in any home remedy in order to expedite the therapeutic effect, rum was commonly used. "Until one day someone decided to remove the garlic and honey. Then added a few tablespoons sugar to reduce the acidity of lime. The ice came next, to ward off the heat, "explains Carlos Lima, executive director of IBRAC (Brazilian Institute of Cachaça)


1 shot Cachaça (Feeling Brazilian? Try the Leblon brand)
1 teaspoon turbinado sugar
2 lime wedges
Soda water (optional)


In the bottom of a glass, muddle the lime wedges and sugar until well mixed, about 20 seconds. Add ice, cachaça, and soda water. Give it a quick stir, and enjoy.

Now, to be truly Brazilian, sip this while wearing Lydali agate drusy earrings or rings. Cheers!

Posted in Brazil, Caipirinha, drink, global

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