About South American Spirits from Brazil

About South American Spirits from Brazil
The signature spirit of Brazil is cachaça (ca·sha·sa) which distilled from fresh sugarcane juice. There are two styles, unaged, which is bottled just after distillation, and aged, which is aged in American, Brazilian, or French oak barrels from three to twelve years; some of these aged versions are double distilled. The best examples of cachaça offer flavors of banana, powdered sugar, coconut and pepper; some have a more rustic, fuel-like character. While some cachaças are enjoyed on their own, most are used to mix in cocktails, in particular Brazil’s national cocktail, The Caipirinha (kie-purr-REEN-yah), which is simply cachaça, sugar, and muddled lime.

Top Picks for Brazil

South American Spirits

Pitú Vitoriosa Cachaça
97 points
$120
Copper color. Aromas and flavors of spicy raisin bran, elephant cage straw, dried bananas, and butter roasted brazil nuts with a glycerous, dry-yet-fruity medium-to-full body and a silky, complex, very long finish with overtones of fennel, sweet and peppery spices, bee pollen and propolis, and plantain. An intriguingly rustic, rich, and warming aged cachaça that invites another sip.
Germana Soul Cachaça
96 points
$37
Clear color. Attractive aromas of fresh meringue, albumen and egg shell, roasted plantain, papaya and apples, and hint of diesel and wax polish with a silky, bright, dryish medium body and a smooth, delightful, long coconut water, spiced brazil nut brittle, hint of white banana leaf ash, and tea finish. A graceful and complex Cachaça with nuanced layers of flavor for sipping or thoughtful cocktails.
Germana Cachaça Da Palha
95 points
$54
Straw yellow color. Aromas and flavors of malted chocolate balls, banana cream pie, cola float with mint, and cashew maple toffee with a silky, bright, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a smooth, appealing, medium-long finish manifesting accents of coconut and mineral waters, horchata, and delicately spiced papaya and plantain chips. A pure and well rounded Cachaça with flavors that glide across the palate to a warm satisfying finish.
Novo Fogo Silver Cachaça
95 points
$29.99
Clear color. Aromas and flavors of black olive tapenade, dried grasses, grilled tomato, raisin toast, and ripe papaya with a round, vibrant, dryish medium body and a smooth, intricate, long finish conveying elements of salty pao de queijo, black bean spread, and grilled pineapple finish. A round and supple Cachaca with extroverted vegetal notes and exceptional texture; for spirits connoisseurs and fine cocktails.
95 points $29.99
Germana Caetanos Cachaça
93 points
$37
Golden yellow color. Aromas and flavors of roasted coconuts and nuts, beeswax, rubber leaf, and vaseline and lip balm with a supple, bright, dry-yet-fruity medium-full body and a silky, compelling, medium-long finish that presents accents of toasted polenta with honeycomb, coconut custard with raisin bran, plantain cake, and spiced nuts. A rich, wood-aged Cachaça with an interesting range of savory and sweet flavors.
Novo Fogo Bar Strength Silver Cachaca
93 points
$24
Best Buy
Clear color. Aromas and flavors of ripe mango, juicy kiwi, cajeta, warm plantain, and matcha with a supple, crisp, dryish light body and a tingling, complex, long finish imparting notes of grilled nuts. A complex, highly hedonic Cachaca with intricate layers of flavor.
Awards: 2021 Best Unaged Cachaca
93 points $24 Best Buy
Novo Fogo Chameleon Cachaça
93 points
$32.99
Light gold color. Aromas of grilled fig, heirloom apple, hints of orange peel, and cedar with a velvety, vibrant, dry light-to-medium body and a smooth, elegant, long roasted pine nuts and hazelnuts, grilled citrus, endive, and whipped cream finish. A delicious Wood Aged Cachaca with bright grassy cane note coupled with creamy oak; a sophisticated treat on its own or in thoughtfully crafted cocktails.
Awards: 2021 Best Wood Aged Cachaca
93 points $32.99
Pitú Gold Cachaça
92 points
$24
Best Buy
Gold color. Aromas and flavors of polished wood and wood putty, salted roasted cashews and bananas, spicy tropical fruit chutney, and horse blanket with a satiny, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a warming, long finish displaying shades of roasted coconut water, anise, sage, and cola nut, gingerbread and carrot cake, and exotic woods. A buoyant and bountiful wood-aged cachaça that will be extremely versatile.
92 points $24 Best Buy
Novo Fogo Barrel Aged Cachaça
90 points
$34.99
Bright gold color. Aromas of poached pear, cinnamon-vanilla, green apple, brown butter, honey-roasted sunflower seeds, and sprouted grain biscuits with a supple, vibrant, dry-yet-fruity light-to-medium body and a warming, appealing, medium-long bruleed tangerine and paprika finish. A toasty Cachaca with well-balanced oak; bright, craveable flavors will keep you coming back for another sip.
90 points $34.99