During all my years behind the bar I never made one drink with cachaça. Not one. I'd love to know the last time you ordered a drink with the potent sugar cane spirit, or were with someone who ordered one, and by the way... being anywhere south of the United States does not count.
I do remember the first time that I tasted cachaça and it was not love at first taste. It tasted earthy and raw and harsh, and hardly resembled rum to me. But over time, I learned to like it and appreciate it. Cachaça is so wildly different than all the usual spirit we're used to being served in bars and restaurants. Now, as we gather to watch the Olympics in Brazil each night, it seems like sipping on one of these drinks is a must.
If you're new to the spirit, start with the cachaça mojito or the batida. They quite the abrupt taste a bit more and will leave you curious enough to be bolder in your next drink choices. The caipirinha is a fantastically classic Brazilian drink that you absolutely must try.
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Caipirinha Cocktail 2 ounces cachaça 1 teaspoon of sugar or ½ ounce simple syrup ¾ ounce fresh lime juice Chopped lime
Directions Combine the cachaça, sugar, and lime juice in a shaker filled with ice. If you're using granuated sugar instead of simple syrup, you need to let it dissolve first. You can coax that process along with muddling or stirring. Strain the mixture into a glass filled with crushed ice and top with chopped limes.
Caipifruta Cocktail 2 ounces cachaça 1 teaspoon of sugar or ½ ounce simple syrup ¾ ounce fresh lime juice Chopped fruit
Directions First best results, infuse the cachaça first with your collections of fruits. Once ready, combine the cachaça, sugar, lime juice, fruit, and ice in a pint glass. Pour the drink into a shaker and then back again to mix. Repeat if necessary before serving.
Cachaça Margarita 2 ounces cachaça ¾ ounce triple sec 2 ounces limeade Salt for rim Lime wheel for garnish
Directions Combine the cachaça, triple sec, and limeade in a martini shaker filled with ice. Shake well, then strain into a glass rimmed with salt and filled with ice. Garnish with a lime wheel and serve.
Batida 2 ounces cachaça 3 ounces coconut milk ½ ounce coconut milk fat 1 ounce simple syrup 1 cup ice
Directions Combine all of the ingredients in a blender and mix on high until smooth. Serve immediately.
Cachaça Raspberry Mojito 2 ounces cachaça 1 mint spring 1 ounce raspberry simple syrup 1 ounce lime juice 2 - 4 ounces club soda
Directions Muddle the mint in the cachaça until the cachaça turns light green. Strain the mixture into a martini shaker filled with ice. Add the raspberry simple syrup and lime juice. Shake to mix, then strain into a highball. Add the club soda, garnish with mint, and serve.