If you’re like me, you’re always in search of a much needed getaway, but sometimes the best getaways happen without ever having to board a flight. So grab a few friends, sit back, relax and prepare for your next adventure with this global guide to delicious drinks that will take you around the world and back all from the comfort of home.
The Painkiller: British Virgin Islands
Is the Caribbean calling your name? Do you hear crashing waves and steel drums day and night? Take a trip to the British Virgin Islands with the country’s official drink, the Painkiller. This drink made with orange and pineapple juices, coconut cream, fresh grated nutmeg, and Pusser’s Rum, will have you feeling like you’re basking in the sun on a beach in no time.
2-4 oz. of Pusser’s Rum
4 oz. pineapple juice
1 oz. cream of coconut
1 oz. orange juice
Grated fresh nutmeg
In a cocktail shaker filled with ice add first four ingredients and stir. Pour into cocktail glasses and top with grated nutmeg.
The Caipirinha: Brazil
If you’ve always wanted to dance in your teeny weeny bikini on Ipanema Beach in Brazil but never got the chance, now you can bring it right to your door with the Brazilian classic the Caipirinha. It will be carnival time in your home once you get an ice cold glass of this rum, sugar, and lime infused drink in your hands. The lime can be easily substituted with fresh fruit like strawberries or kiwi for more of a tropical experience.
1/2 cup sugar
1 1/2 quarts ice
1 cup cachaca (Brazilian brandy made from sugar cane)
Cut the limes in half, and then cut each half into 8 pieces. Place 12 pieces of lime in each of 4 double old-fashioned glasses (or other 12-ounce glasses.) Sprinkle 2 tablespoons of sugar into each glass. Using a muddler or the butt end of a large wooden spoon, mash the limes into the base of the glass. Try to dissolve the sugar as you do this, and stir occasionally. Fill each glass with 1 1/2 cups of ice and 1/4 cup of cachaca. Pour the contents of the glass into a shaker, and invert the glass into the shaker to act as a lid. Shake the glass and shaker to combine the sugar and cachaca for several seconds. Lift the glass from the shaker, and pour the contents back into the glass. Repeat the process with the remaining 3 glasses.
The French 75: France
A traditional French drink, the French 75 actually has a spot in history as a World War I cocktail named for a cannon and if you ask anyone who’s had one, the drink’s combination of gin and champagne packs enough punch to match a French 75mm howitzer.
3 ounces gin
3 ounces fresh lemon juice
4 teaspoons superfine granulated sugar
1 1/2 cups ice cubes
1 cup chilled champagne
Lemon twists for garnish
In a cocktail shaker, combine gin, lemon juice, sugar, and ice cubes and shake to chill. Strain cocktails into 2 champagne flutes and top off with champagne. Garnish glass with a lemon twist.
The Negroni: Italy
Named after Count Cammillo Negroni this somewhat bitter drink is made purely of spirits so don’t go taking it to the head. Instead, sit back and enjoy a sunset as you sip this drink that some Italian locals claim mimics the Florentine sunset.
2 tablespoons gin
2 tablespoons Campari
2 tablespoons sweet vermouth
1 orange twist
Combine gin, Campari, and sweet vermouth in an ice-filled Old Fashioned glass; stir gently and garnish with an orange twist.
Aguas Frescas: Mexico
Not quite juice, but more than just flavored water, the appropriately named Agua Fresca or “refreshing water” is simply fruit pulp steeped in cold water, sometimes with added sugar. Try a watermelon Agua Fresca to quench your thirst.
8 cups cubed seeded watermelon (about 6 pounds with the rind), divided
1 cup water, divided
1/3 cup sugar, divided
1/4 cup fresh lime juice
1 liter (4 cups) club soda or seltzer water, well chilled
Lime slices for garnish
Combine half the watermelon, half the water and half the sugar in a blender; puree. Pour through a coarse strainer into a large container. Repeat with the remaining watermelon, water and sugar. Stir in lime juice. Refrigerate until well chilled, about 4 hours.
To serve, stir in club soda (or seltzer) and garnish with lime.
This chilled fresh yogurt drink blended with water and spices or fruit often has a salty pungent bite, thanks to the added black pepper and cumin, ingredients that may initially shock your taste buds. But guaranteed that if you give the Lassi a try you’ll be hooked! If salty drinks aren’t your thing, you can always try a sweet Lassi which is blended with fruit.
3 cups low fat plain yogurt
1 cup ice cold water
4 Tablespoons jaggery (Indian sugar) or normal white sugar
1 Teaspoon rosewater – available online and at Indian markets
Mix all of the ingredients together and serve in glasses with lots of ice.