Chile, a land kissed by the Pacific Ocean and crowned by the Andes, boasts a rich culinary tapestry. This cultural melting pot has birthed a plethora of delightful beverages, many of which are non-alcoholic and ideal for every member of the family. Here are the top five non-alcoholic cocktails you should indulge in when visiting Chile.
- Mote con Huesillo: A summer staple, Mote con Huesillo is an iconic Chilean drink. At its heart, it’s a sun-dried peach (huesillo) soaked until soft, served atop husked wheat (mote) in a sweet syrup. This refreshing concoction is often found at street vendor stalls, ready to quench the thirst of anyone looking for a sweet treat. The combination of chewy wheat and juicy peach makes it both a drink and a snack!
- Papaya al Jugo: Originating from the northern regions of Chile, this delightful beverage celebrates the country’s beloved papaya. It consists of pureed papaya fruits blended with a hint of sugar and served chilled. Its velvety texture and sweet taste make it a favorite, especially during breakfast or as a midday refreshment. For those craving an exotic twist, a touch of lime enhances its vibrancy.
- Chicha de Manzana: While ‘chicha’ typically refers to fermented drinks, Chicha de Manzana is a non-alcoholic version made from apples. This apple cider-like beverage is frequently homemade and features cooked apples, sugar, and cinnamon. It’s especially popular during the Chilean National Holidays in September.
- Leche con Plátano: Simple yet undeniably satisfying, Leche con Plátano is a blend of milk and ripe bananas. This creamy concoction often incorporates a dash of vanilla and sugar to taste. A staple in Chilean households, it’s a childhood favorite that transcends into adulthood. It’s not only delicious but also nutritious.
- Aguas Frescas: Aguas Frescas, or ‘fresh waters’, are a range of refreshing beverages made from fruits, cereals, or seeds mixed with sugar and water. While they’re popular throughout Latin America, Chile has its versions. One such is Agua de Cebada, a barley-based drink sweetened and sometimes flavored with a touch of vanilla.
Chile’s non-alcoholic beverage scene is a testament to the country’s bountiful natural resources and cultural influences. Each drink tells a story of tradition, nature, and Chilean zest for life. Next time you’re in Chile, don’t just stop at their famed empanadas or ceviche; sip on these delightful non-alcoholic cocktails and immerse yourself in Chile’s liquid heritage.