April 12th, 2012

Legalize Cachaça – For Real!

Let the Games Begin!

Many of you have participated in our grassroots campaign to have Cachaça recognized in the United States as a distinct spirit of Brazil. Starting with the Declaration of Cachaça Independenceat the Tales of the Cocktail in New Orleans in July 2009, we have been working hard to educate and mobilize support to‘Legalize Cachaça!’ Driven by our grassroots organization – C.R.N.V.L. (Consumers for the Repeal of Needlessly Vague Labeling Laws!) – many of you have participated in our ralliesand have signed our petition to ‘Legalize Cachaça’, which was proudly presented to Mr. John Manfreda at the U.S. Government Authority, the T.T.B.

As a result of your support, the U.S. government has agreed to begin proceedings to allow the recognition of Cachaça as both ‘Cachaça’ and as a distinctive product of Brazil. In return, the Brazilian government has agreed to recognize both Tennessee Whiskey and Bourbon as distinctive products of the United States. This week, U.S Trade Representative Ron Kirk and Brazilian Minister of Development, Industry, and Foreign Trade Fernando Pimentel exchanged the official letters that launch the process of formal recognition.

In addition to your support, this is the result of a lot of hard work and persistence from people behind the scenes, including John Manfreda and his team at the TTB; Carlos Lima, Tony Haynes and the Institute of Brazilian Cachaça; and government officials at the USTR and the Brazilian equivalent, the MRE. In particular, many of our customers and distributors wrote directly to the TTB, which was very helpful in getting the TTB’s attention and support.

This is a big step in our mission for people around the world to recognize the greatness of Brazil’s national spirit, Cachaça. Made from fresh sugar cane, and not molasses, Cachaça is truly something special. Distilled in a single batch alambique potstill and polished in XO Cognac casks, Leblon Cachaça is even more special.

So to celebrate the ‘Legalize Cachaça’ news (as well as Leblon’s winning of the ‘Best Cachaça’ and two Double Gold medals at last month’s 2012 San Francisco Global Spirits Awards), we are hosting this week ‘Legalize Cachaça’ Happy Hours at these dates, times, and locations:

New York: Lani Kai – Friday April 13, 6-8pm
Miami: Novecento – Thursday April 12, 6-8pm
Chicago: Union Sushi – Thursday April 12, 6-8pm
Philadelphia: Alma de Cuba – Friday April 13, 7-9pm
Rio de Janeiro: Fasano – Friday April 13, 6-9pm
São Paulo: Mocotó – Friday April 13, 6-9pm | Mani – Friday April 13, 6-9pm

Delicious Leblon Caipirinhas will be served, including celebratory special Leblon Açai Caipirinhas made with Leblon and Cedilla (a cachaça-based liqueur infused with açai berries and made by the Maison Leblon) in the US, and shots of Reserva Especial in Brazil.

Please visit our Facebook Page and Website for announcements of other ‘Legalize Cachaça’ parties around the country and around the world.

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To digitially sign the petition, complete the form below:

We the People, in order to form a more perfect bar, seek to establish Cachaça as 'Cachaça,' Brazil's Noblve Spirit. We formally and necessarily declare that Cachaça is independent of, and therefore not, 'Brazilian Rum.' We make this declaration with no prejudice or malice towards Rum, nor to any other of our brethren spirits, such as Vodka, Tequila, or Gin.

To prove the above, let facts be submitted to a candid world: We recognize that Cachaça is made only from fresh-pressed cane juice, not molasses, and can only come from Brazil. We declare that Cachaça is the key ingredient to the Caipirinha, Brazil's National Cocktail. We also recognize that Cachaça mixes well with just about anything - fruit juices, sodas, and tonics - and brings a wonderful Brazilian touch to any classic cocktail.

We therefore hold these truths to be self-evident; that Cachaça is Brazil's Noble Spirit, endowed by its creator with certain unalienable characteristics, that among these are a fruity nose, fresh taste, and a long, clean finish. And in support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the confidence of our combined passion and expertise, we mutually pledge our understanding, our professionalism and our sacred honor.

Click on each event for more details.