A New Take on Cachaça

    Distilled from fresh cane juice, cachaça—the national spirit of Brazil—is naturally sweet and refreshing, making it an ideal base for cocktails. A straightforward, uncomplicated spirit, it is typically bottled shortly after distillation. However, in the case of the recently launched Sagatiba Velha (velha meaning aged), the distillate is further imbued with a depth that only oak barrels can impart. The nose of the Velha combines vanilla, brown sugar, and cinnamon notes reminiscent of French toast. On the palate, the spirit delivers on the promise with cream, banana, and butter notes. A hint of pepper balances out the richness, while almond and anise come through on the endnotes. Though great in a caipirinha, Velha’s two years in the barrel ensure a wonderful straight drink as well. (www.sagatiba.com)

    —Oliver Slosser

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