This drink is the underprivileged brother to the Caipirinha. The Caipirissima uses white rum instead of the Cachaça found in the Caipirinha, so for those that don’t want to invest in a bottle of the fiery sugar cane distillate, the Caipirissima is good starting point. I do recommend that you use a good quality white rum, like Appleton or Havana Club Blanco, both of which are barrel aged and provide a good rum flavour. Fresh limes are an absolute must, and a good muddler will help. Other than that, you can enjoy this great summer cocktail.
The Caipirinha is the latest trendy cocktail making its way through North America. The drink is extremely simple to make and it consists of three ingredients, Cachaca, lime and sugar (four if you include ice). A whole lime is required and it needs to be sliced into quarters or more. You can wedge it or make slices, it's your choice. I prefer slices as they are easier to muddle and if done right you can save a couple of the lime slices to do a nice layering effect. Place the lime into a heavy walled glass, like a boston shaker glass, (you don't want to break the glass while muddling, safety first) and muddle the lime forcefully. You want to get the lime oils out of the peel because that seems to make this drink. Don't make a paste though, that's just not good. You can add the sugar before or after, but if you are using granular sugar, add it before muddling. Once you've muddles simple pour into a rocks glass and pack with ice. Pour the Cachaca over the ice, garnish with a lime and serve.
For the Caipirissima, simply follow the above procedure and substitute rum in place of Cachaca. It's a simple drink, but it has that rustic edginess compared to the fru fru "martini's" that seem to have invaded every bar menu around the globe. Think of the Caipirissima / Caipirissima as the grunge bands of the early 1990's compared to the fashion conscious hair bands of the late 1980's (think Cosmo). Nirvana vs. Poison or Sound Garden vs Bon Jovi, the martini's look good, but lack substance.
Just by the recipe you can probably figure out that the drink has a good strong lime flavour balanced out by the sugar. The rum gives it that alcohol edge. Best served ice cold.
1 Lime (quartered)
1 1/2 oz White Rum
½ oz Simple Syrup (2:1)
Lime wedge for garnish
Muddle, ice, drink.