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Peruvian Chilcano - a refreshing long drink with Pisco

Peruvian Chilcano

A refreshing and popular long drink with Pisco from Peru


Chilcano, or also known as Chilcanito, is one of the most popular long drinks in Peru – and my personal favorite. It is based on Peru’s national drink Pisco, a grape brandy, which is the pride and joy of every Peruvian.

Especially in summer and on hot days this light, easy drinkable and tasty long drink is stunningly refreshing and so good. It’s as well a great sun-downer and, next to Pisco Sour, the drink we have when meeting friends or having them over.

There are lots of theories and local myths surrounding the origin of Chilcano, but nobody really knows where it came from or who created this lovely slightly alcoholic beverage for the first time. However, it is known that it appeared in Lima around the turn of the millennium (19th to 20th century) and references date back the Chilcano to the early 20th century.

While the original version of the Chilcano is prepared with Pisco, Ginger Ale, lime juice and some Jarabe de Goma (gommy or gum syrup), in the last few years people happy to try out new things started to add different fruit juices such as cranberry, passion fruit or even strawberry to name just a few or other soft drinks substituting the Ginger Ale - lime juice mixture.

The good thing about Chilcano is that it’s really easy to prepare in no time even at home. But mixing some Pisco with Ginger Ale and tossing in some slices of lime and ice cubes, won’t do it. So that our readers can enjoy a heavenly Peruvian Chilcano, our co-founder Tin Tin shares his very special recipe with us below. Please use high-quality Pisco and fresh ingredients to get the characteristic refreshing taste, quality and flavor of an original Chilcano.


Chilcano is really easy prepared in no time. Using freshly pressed lime juice and high quality Pisco ensures the characteristic refreshing taste and flavor of an original Chilcano.
First step of the preparation of Chilcano is to mix the Pisco, lime juice and sugar syrup.
Then just pour the mixture into long drink glasses and add some ice cubes
Fill up with Ginger Ale and toss in some slices of lime
and your perfect Chilcano is ready to serve

Tin Tin's Recipe for original Peruvian Chilcano4



120 ml good quality Pisco - preferable "Quebranta" (4 oz.)
40 ml freshly pressed lime juice (1.4 oz.)
40 ml Jarabe de Goma (1.4 oz.) - can be substituted with readily available white cane sugar syrup or gomme / gum syrup
Ice cold Ginger Ale
2 limes
Angostura Bitters
ice cubes


  1. Mix the freshly pressed lime juice with the Pisco and the sugar syrup. Cut the limes in slices.
  2. Pour about 50 ml (1.7 oz.) each into 4 long drink size glasses. Add a few ice cubes and top up with ice cold Ginger Ale.
  3. Add 3-4 slices of lime and 3 drops of Angostura Bitters to each glass. Stir the drink carefully and serve with a straw.
  4. Enjoy!
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