Sweet, tart and in-season-right-now concord grapes blend splendidly with sugar-cane based cachaça.
There are so many great ways to say cheers -- proost (Dutch), Sláinte (Scottish), Kanpai (Japanese) -- this weekend we're taking the Brazilian route and toasting Saúde with this seasonal take on the traditional Caipirinha.
Concord Grape Caipirinha
1 cup concord grapes
1/3 cup water
1/3 cup granulated sugar
2 limes; quartered
4 ounces cachaça
6-8 concord grapes; for garnish
lime wheels; for garnish
To make the concord grape simple syrup: combine concord grapes, water and granulated sugar in a saucepan over medium heat. Stir, slightly crushing the grapes with your spoon, until the sugar dissolves, 3-5 minutes. Turn off heat and set aside to cool.
Distribute lime wedges between two glasses and use a muddle to smash the wedges and release their juice. Into each glass, pour in 1 1/2 ounces cooled concord grape simple syrup, 2 ounces cachaça and a few ice cubes. Stir to combine and garnish with additional concord grapes and lime wheels.
Related: Straight Up: What Is Cachaca?
(Images: Rebekah Peppler)