It may be the dead of Winter, but this past weekend, San Francisco felt like pure Summer, with clear skies and balmy temperatures. I decided to celebrate with a drink that couldn't be more appropriate: the Caipirinha.

This drink, is made with limes, as well as a special liquor called cachaça, which incidentally happens to be the national liquor of Brazil. Over the past five years, cachaça has developed a large fan base in the United States. Like rum, it's made from sugarcane, but while rum is made from distilled molasses, cachaça is the product of fermented sugarcane juice. To make this cocktail, you can choose any brand, but I used Água Luca ($28.99), a premium variety of cachaça that's filtered a whopping 12 times.

On the nose, it resembles tequila, and it has a light, clean flavor with a slightly sweet finish. Although Água Luca can easily be enjoyed by itself on the rocks, its sweet-tart flavor is incredible when used in a caipirinha. To transport your palate to Brazil,





  1. 2 oz. cachaça
  2. 1 oz. simple syrup
  3. 1 lime, quartered
  4. Cracked ice


  1. In a shaker, muddle sugar and limes thoroughly.
  2. Add cachaça and cracked ice. Shake vigorously and pour contents of shaker, including ice, into an old-fashioned glass. Garnish with a lime wedge.

Makes 1 cocktail.

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