updated 02/16/2012 AT 5:30 PM ET
•originally published 02/19/2012 AT 4:30 PM ET
Brazil’s annual Carnaval celebration is all about music, costumes, dance – and, of course, drinks.
Referring to the fete as “the biggest party on the planet,” Drew Peterson, the beverage director at New York’s Sushisamba restaurant, explains the influence behind the $12 kiwi-themed cocktail they’ve created at the eatery to honor the season, beginning Feb. 18.
Inspired by a recent trip to Brazil, Peterson says the restaurant’s culinary team fell in love with the use of kiwis in local cocktails.
“The Sushisamba Carnaval cocktail takes the spin on the Brazilian classic by combining fresh kiwi with classic Brazilian Leblon Cachacha, and tops the cocktail off with champagne for the celebratory component,” Peterson tells PEOPLE. “No one knows how to party harder than the Brazilians! Saude!”
To accompany the festive signature beverage, the restaurant has also come up with Carnaval-inspired menu specials, including a $35 Copacabana crispy red snapper with lime, chili, cilantro and coconut rice – and a banana split with doce de leite cream, coconut mocha and yamazaki cream for $14.
There’s a chance that celebrities such as Hugh Jackman, Ryan Phillippe, Adrien Brody and Kourtney Kardashian may end up trying the special items, as they have recently popped into the restaurant for a meal.
Follow Sushisamba’s recipe below to create your very own taste of Carnaval:
½ kiwi, peeled and sliced
½ oz Domaine de Canton
½ oz simple syrup
1½ oz Leblon
1 scoop ice
Champagne, to top
In a glass, muddle the kiwi. Then combine simple syrup, Canton, Leblon and ice. Shake. Top with champagne. Garnish with a raw ginger slice. Enjoy!