A string of lively, lantern-lit beach bars lines Playa Cabarete and all of them serve variations on the locally brewed liquor called Mama Juana (a dark, heady concoction made from dark rum, red wine, honey, herbs, and tree bark). Bartender Rade Baunovic, who pours the stuff at the always-packed Bambu Bar (809-982-4549), says most tourists prefer their Mama Juana cut with something sweet, like Coke, 7-Up, grenadine, or even milk. Go ahead and ask for a shot. Just be prepared to sleep in the next morning.
To taste the Mama Juana of a real master brewer, look for Pedro Alcantara (grizzled, mid-40s, always wearing a white Panama hat), who sells his bottles on the beach. Pedro hand-gathers more than sixteen different herbs and roots for his Mama Juana, including one locally considered to be a potent aphrodisiac: paraquevito.