5 Non-Alcoholic Drinks to Try in Latin America

October 19, 2012
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It’s no surprise that Central America has a lot to offer in the way of drinks that have a little bite to them, whether it’s rum, sugar cane liquor, or in the way of lighter options, pilsner beer. However, there’s more to Central America drinks. Today we feature a few of the best non-alcoholic drinks in Central America.

  1. Refresco. Refresco is just as it sounds, a refreshing cold drink in Costa Rica. You’ll find variations of it around Central America and the rest of the world, as it’s little more then a fruit smoothie, typically made with milk or water, and known by this name in Costa Rica. Fresh local fruits often used in refrescos include coconut, pineapple, and mango.
  2. Horchata. Horchata is another Latin American drink that varies in definition and taste depending on the country. The milky-looking drink in Latin America typically consists of milk, sugar, vanilla, and cinnamon, although many other variations include rice. While travelers at one time would typically have to go to a café to have one made, they can now be found in grocery stores in some countries.
  3. Coffee. If you like coffee, then you’ll like what you find in Central America. Many Central America countries are known for their coffee production, grown in the very countries you’re drinking it in. In many Central American countries you can even do a tour of the production facilities. However, go into most grocery stores and cafes and you’ll find local coffee. Nonetheless, if you’re thinking about bringing coffee back, make sure you brush up on your country’s custom regulations beforehand.
  4. Limonada con soda. Translated “lemonade with soda, “ this is a drink you’ll typically find in Guatemala. While you can easily order just a lemonade, this adds a little fizz to it. Unlike some of the drinks on this list, limonada con soda is a drink recipe you can easily bring back home. Traditional recipes in Guatemala call for freshly squeezed lemons, sugar, and soda water. You can also find it in some Guatemalan grocery stores.
  5. Seaweed shake. While this Belizean shake-like drink may not exactly sound appealing, people who drink it often feel refreshed and feeling healthier. As the name presumes, it features dried seaweed, in addition to evaporated and condensed milk, vanilla, and nutmeg blended with ice. You’ll usually have to get this from a street vendor selling them.

Any particular Latin American drinks you like? Tell us in the comments below!

by Spencer Spellman

 

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