Kumquat-Ginger Caipirinha Recipe

Leblon Cachaca's Kumquat-Ginger Caipirinha
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  • Total: 5 mins
  • Prep: 5 mins
  • Cook: 0 mins
  • Yield: 1 cocktail (1 serving)

Place the kumquat-ginger caipirinha on your list of drinks to try at least once because it is a divine flavor experience. The recipe is a simple variation of the popular Brazilian caipirinha cocktail, in which fresh kumquat and ginger flavor the sugar and cachaça.

One of the best aspects of this drink is that the kumquat has a season which typically runs from December or January through March or April, so this is a fantastic little drink to bring the sunshine into winter.

The recipe comes from Leblon Cachaça. It is refreshing and complex and, since it is so dependent on fresh flavors, should be made with a premium cachaça. Fortunately, good cachaça, such as Leblon, is becoming easier to find.

Ingredients

  • 2 ounces cachaça (Leblon)
  • 5 kumquats (sliced)
  • 1 1/2 to 2 tablespoons sugar (superfine)
  • 1 teaspoon ginger (fresh, chopped)
  •  Garnish: kumquat slice

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

  2. In an old-fashioned glass, place the kumquats, ginger, and sugar.

  3. Muddle well.

  4. Fill the glass with ice, then add the cachaça.

  5. Garnish with a slice of kumquat.

  6. Serve and enjoy!

Tips

  • Kumquats are tiny, so simply cut them in half. You'll also want to rinse them under running water before slicing since the peel will become part of the drink.
  • If you want to shake this drink, place a small shaker tin over top of the glass. Ensure it has a good seal to avoid spills and splashes, then give it a couple of good shakes. Keep the apparatus vertical and hold each piece with one hand rather than shaking it over your shoulder like you would a normal cocktail shaker.
  • Superfine sugar has smaller granules than standard white sugar so it dissolves easier in cold drinks. There's really no need to hunt it down because all you need is a food processor or blender to make superfine sugar from the sugar that's already in your pantry.

Recipe Variations

  • Other small citrus fruits can be used when you can't find kumquats. Clementines (aka "cuties" or "sweeties") are an excellent alternative.
  • If you prefer, skip the sugar and use simple syrup instead. About 3/4 ounce of the syrup is equivalent to 1 tablespoon of sugar. Start with 1 ounce of syrup and adjust to taste.

How Strong Is a Kumquat-Ginger Caiprinha?

Drinks like the caipirinha (think of the whiskey old-fashioned, too) are essentially enhancing the spirit used, so their alcohol content is going to be very close to the strength of that ingredient. When factoring in a little ice dilution and juice from the muddle, you can expect this cocktail to weigh in around 29 percent ABV (58 proof) when made with an 80-proof cachaça.