Chances are high you encountered Brazil’s national drink, the Caipirinha, if you’ve ever traveled to the South American country. Refreshing and easy to make, the cocktail contains fresh lime juice, sugar and cachaça—a spirit as central to Brazilian identity as samba, soccer and carnival. First made in the 1500s from the fermented juice of sugar cane, cachaça is similar to rum yet distinct for its funky, grassy flavors, setting the Caipirinha apart from other sweet-and-sour cocktails.
In a double Old Fashioned glass, muddle the sugar and lime.
Fill with ice, add the cachaça, and stir briefly.
Garnish with a lime wheel (optional).