The beauty of the caipirinha is that it leaves a lot of options to the imagination. Caipirinhas made with other muddled fruit are the most common deviation, which replaces a portion of the required sugar with the natural sweetness of fruits like raspberries, strawberries and passionfruit. Unlike normal rum, made from molasses, a by-product of sugar refinement, the flavor of cachaça is not diluted but enhanced when married with other flavors.
TIP: If you can’t find cachaça at your liquor store, feel free to ask them to order it for you. I recommend Leblon, a premium cachaça named for a famous Rio de Janiero beach, that is made from Brazilian sugarcane, then aged in cognac barrels.
Recipe by Ashley Bode
1 lime, cut into eighths
2 tsp sugar
2 1/2 oz cachaça
1. Before cutting lime, roll the lime gently on the cutting board to loosen the peel. This will make for easier muddling. Place the lime wedges into an old fashioned or rocks glass.
2. Add sugar to the bottom of glass and muddle the two together with a muddler. The pulp of the lime should be face up, if possible.
3. Add cachaça and ice; stir well.