After an exciting day adventuring and exploring a foreign country, nothing says relaxation quite like a pint, glass, or cuppa of the local specialty. Here's our top picks of our favorite, festive, or go-to drink orders in a few of the places we've been.
1. British Virgin Islands - PAINKILLER
Similar to a Pina Colada, this cocktail is essential when visiting the British Virgin Islands! It includes Pusser's rum, pineapple juice, orange juice, cream of coconut, and a dash of nutmeg. Sip one while enjoying a world-class view of the Caribbean Ocean!
2. Costa Rica - GUARO
Guaro is the official national drink of Costa Rica. We were able to try some awesome homemade rum when we went on a rafting trip which included lunch and tour of a local farm, a common practice in the Arenal region. The grand finale was a look at their very own sugar cane press and a taste of their bootleg rum! It was delicious!
3. Portugal - PORT WINE
Port wine, named for its origins in Portugal, is a wine fortified with sweet grape liquor. Not only is port wine a great accompaniment to an after-dinner conversation, in several places we dined, it was common for a waiter to bring out a complimentary glass for us to enjoy! It helped that Jet speaks Portuguese and we usually made friends with the restaurant staff! Saude!
4. Brazil - CAIPIRINHA
Full disclosure, Jet is Brazilian, and he will probably name about six other drinks he would prefer to order at a bar besides a Caipirinha if you ask him. But this lime, sugar, and rum concoction is so quintessentially Brazilian, that it must be chosen as Brazil's drink of choice! It was my first drink in Brazil about ten years ago when we went for the first time!
5. Turkey - RAKI
This is the only drink on this list that I would not drink again! This terrifying liquor goes straight up your nose, thanks to the anise added to this clear brandy liquor. But when in Turkey, it must be ordered! The serving ritual is just as important as the drink, and when you order a shot of raki, your waiter will also bring some water. Watch as the water is poured into the clear raki liquid, it will magically turn a cloudy-white. Now your raki is ready to enjoy! ... (or you could order some rose tea, instead!)
6. Germany - BEER
Drinking a cold one in the biergartens of Munich should be at the top of everyone's bucket list, especially if you love beer! We traveled to Germany in the spring, and got to enjoy some of the best settings in the city of Munich while surrounded by blooming gardens, without the craziness of Oktoberfest. These public beer gardens are all over the city, and we especially loved being seated at a long table and then being joined by some locals off from work for a glass or two. Speaking of the glasses, be prepared, as there is only one size available in the public gardens: 1 liter! They do have 0.5 liters available in the Radler beer, a summery concoction of beer and lemonade that was excellent sitting outside on a clear spring day!
7. Morocco - MINT TEA
Since the sale of alcohol is illegal here, according to traditional Islamic law, mint tea is THE drink of choice for Moroccans. To be honest, we didn't miss the nightly alcoholic cocktail when in Morocco. It just wouldn't feel right to drink something other than tea when sitting rooftop above Tangiers, listening to the nightly call to prayer over the mosque loudspeakers and watching the sunset turn the white-washed building pink and orange!
8. Jamaica - RUM
Order anything with Jamaican rum on this Caribbean Island, especially a Jamaican rum punch mixed with fresh juices, and you can't go wrong! Jamaicans are very proud of their rum, and will offer you the whole bottle if you chose to purchase it. When not in the mood for a rum cocktail, order up a cold Red Stripe or Red Stripe Lime!
9. Spain - SANGRIA or TINTO DE VERANO
When ordering a tapa or two on the streets in Spain, sangria will pair perfectly with most any appetizer, cooling off from the Spanish heat! Similar to the wine and juice mix we are used to in the U.S. is Tinto de Verano is a cheaper version made of wine and sometimes soda. Some places will even offer a €2-3 special of a glass of sangria and a chef's choice of tapa! You can't beat that!
10. France - WINE
Known around the world as the leader in wines, don't be intimidated when ordering wine in France. My recommendation is to enjoy some of the local wine when visiting each region of France. Ask your waiter for a house wine sample or a local specialty, which is usually already open and they should have no problem bringing you a sample.
No matter when you go, be sure to take part in the local beverage of choice. Stay tuned for more drinks around the world, numbers 11-20!
What are your favorite drinks from around the world? Comment below, and cheers!