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Star Tips from Featured Sommelier Paul Tanguay

Jim Clarke

On Alcohol:
The Rum-Tequila Alternative
Cachaça has long been considered the national alcohol of Brazil, of which the U.S. has only seen the mass-produced, industrial rubbing alcohols of Cachaça 51 and Pitu. Be on the look-out for high quality brands such as Beleza Pura, Rochinca. Aramzem Vieira & GRM making their way into the U.S. market (for more info visit Besides making great caiprinihas, some of these cachaças rival any great sipping rums and tequilas and show great versatility in recreating such popular standards as the margarita, mojito and cosmopolitan.

Forget Vodka: It’s Sho-time
With an over-saturated, tasteless and odorless vodka market, shochu presents itself as a perfect mixing alternative for tasty cocktails. This clear alcohol (18% to 41% alc/vol.) made from either mugi (barley), kome (rice) or imo (potato) is delicious when mixed in traditional cocktails as a substitution for vodka or simply blended with fresh juices.

Paul Tanguay is the Sommelier of SushiSamba
New York: Park Ave. S. and 7th Ave.
Chicago, Miami

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