Around the World in 20 Drinks: Cocktails to Fuel Your Olympic Travel Dreams
Categories: Food

Around the World in 20 Drinks: Cocktails to Fuel Your Olympic Travel Dreams

So summer’s almost over and you didn’t have a getaway yet — sorry, going to Rio de Janeiro via your TV and Olympics viewing party doesn’t count. Before you put on your sad face, there’s still time to experience the ultimate staycation. The whole point of travel is to step out of your daily routine, relax and explore new things, right? Well, you don’t have to be in another land to do that. Just pick a country and immerse yourself by looking at travel guides, slideshows and videos; reading works of fiction with settings so realistic, you feel you’re there and filling your Prime watch list with films in foreign languages. And while you’re doing all that, sip a national drink or two. Here are 20 cocktails from other countries to get you in the travel mood, as well as a bonus infographic at the bottom.

1. Cachaça (Brazil): Brazil’s national cocktail, the caipirinha, is made with cachaça — a spirit distilled from sugar cane — and lots of muddled lime, so it’s both tart and sweet. This recipe is simple enough that you can shake one up while watching foreign language films in bed. (via One Kings Lane)

2. Rum (Barbados): This cocktail — The Hemingway Daiquiri —is made with white rum, lime juice, grapefruit juice and maraschino liqueur. It was a fave of Ernest Hemingway, hence the name. If you want to channel Hemingway, drink it while reading his memoir A Moveable Feast. (via The Little Epicurean)

3. Gin (Britain): This classic G & T is sweetened with simple syrup, then tarted up with lemon and garnished with blueberries. It’s as beautiful to look at as it is to drink, so be sure to take a staycation selfie. (via Spoon, Fork, Bacon)

4. Aguardiente (Colombia): In Colombia, aguardiente — translation: firewater — is mixed with fresh squeezed orange juice and served warm with a cinnamon twizzler. Break this one out around the fire pit as the nights get cooler. (via Katie and the Kitchen Door)

5. Vodka (Russia): The only thing Russian about a Russian Mule cocktail is the vodka, but don’t the distinctive copper mugs add something extra special to the experience? Ginger beer and blackberry ensure this one goes down real easy — and that’s okay, because no one’s waking up early tomorrow. (via Cake and Knife)

6. Guaro (Costa Rica): This recipe calls for fresh orange and pineapple juices and a shot of grenadine. It’s the color of a sunset on a Costa Rican beach and will put you immediately in a travel state of mind. (via Foodie Anonymous)

7. Pisco (Peru & Chile): The Pisco Sour conjures images of sophisticated world travelers in the 1950s sipping cocktails in their smart shift dresses and dinner jackets. But you can enjoy yours in your backyard on a warm unhurried afternoon over a table of soulful spicy dishes surrounded by friends, and be one with the familia spirit of Peru and Chile. (via Boulder Locavore)

8. Bourbon (United States): Some say the Perfect Manhattan is the greatest martini ever invented, *perfect* because it calls for equal parts sweet and dry vermouth. It’s the bourbon — a specific type of whiskey only distilled in the US — that makes it a quintessentially American drink. Channel Don Draper as you lift your glass. (via Kitchen Swagger)

9. Tequila (Mexico): Ask an American what people drink in Mexico and they’ll say Margaritas, but ask a native Mexican and they’ll tell you it’s Palomas. In Mexico they’re made with tequila and grapefruit soda. This recipe calls for fresh squeezed grapefruit juice and agave, but you can substitute any grapefruit soda, such as Fresca. (via B. Britnell)

10. Rakia (Bosnia & Herzegovina): This cocktail is named the Andric, after Yugoslav Nobel Prize-winning novelist Ivo Andric, and calls for a plum brandy called slivovitz or rakia. The ginger syrup has just the right zip to balance the sweetness in the brandy and vanilla liqueur. (via Chatelaine)

11. Malt Whiskey (Scotland): The Rob Roy is another Manhattan, but made with Scotch instead of Bourbon. With three-and-a-half shots of liquor, it packs a wallop, but no worries — you’re sleeping in tomorrow. (via Dishes Delish)

12. Arrack (Sri Lanka): This cocktail sweetened with silky gomme syrup features the slow burn of Arrack, a liqueur distilled from the fermented juice of the coconut palm. Picture swaying palms as you sip it from your patio. (via Ceylon Arrack)

13. Absinthe (Switzerland): Sweet and tart, with lovely notes of citrus, the Corpse Reviver No. 2 is a cool cocktail with a killer name. Created back in the day when absinthe was blamed for driving artists like Toulouse-Lautrec mad, it was said four of these taken in swift succession was enough to revive a corpse. So it’s just the thing to restore your joie de vivre and erase your workday worries. (via Cup of Zest)

14. Cognac (France): Thyme simple syrup makes this Sidecar cocktail something rather special. Play some Edith Piaf tunes while you drink it in the garden wearing your black and white striped tee and red beret. (via Cake ‘n’ Knife)

15. Raki (Turkey): This cocktail pays homage to Istanbul by incorporating pomegranate and raki — the national liquor with an anise flavor similar to ouzo. The raki is spritzed over the finished cocktail, providing just the right essence to fuel your travel dreams. (via Panning the Globe)

16. Palinka (Hungary): This creamy cocktail is slightly sweet, with a delicious combo of cherry brandy and almond liqueur. Mix it with a cherry Palinka, a type of brandy distilled from various fruits grown on the Hungarian plains, and you’ll be there in spirit. (via Celebrations at Home)

17. Brennivin (Iceland): Brennivin is a liquor that’s infused with rye seeds, and it pairs so well with berries, like the blackcurrants of Scandinavia. Sip this tasty cocktail while you Netflix binge Fortitude and get in the icy zone. (via Food and Wine)

18. Baijiu (China): This whiskey martini has a distinct molasses flavor, thanks to Baijiu, a white liquor distilled from fermented sorghum. Sip yours in bed while screening The Lover and ponder why women don’t wear hats like that anymore. (via Baijiu Cocktail Week)

19. Vantage Australia (Australia): This martini calls for a brand new liqueur, distilled from Australian botanicals like mandarins, lemon myrtle and pepper-berries. Your stay-cay dinner parties will be OH so on trend with this fragrant martini. (via The Weekly Review)

20. Bouka (Tunisia): This cocktail calls for grenadine, cardamom, fresh mint and boukha — a Tunisian liquor distilled from Figs. Drink yours while listening to Dizzy’s jazzy horn solo on “A Night in Tunisia.” (via Saveur)

While you’re getting to the travel the world spirit, learn more about spirits of the world.

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