Sangria: The Adult Version of Fruit Punch
Now that summer has hit and my apartment temperature resides right around 75 degrees on a normal day and between 80 and 90 on a hot day, I’m finding my normal wine habits just aren’t cutting it. I love red wine, but in the summer heat, it just isn’t that refreshing. Roses and whites are perfect for this type of weather, but often I find myself craving Sangria. For those of you that are not familiar with Sangria it is kind of like the adult version of Fruit Punch. Sounds amazing right?
On a hot day Sangria can be incredibly refreshing. So what exactly is Sangria? Simply put, it is wine punch. It is usually made with a light, dry wine high in acidity, chopped fruit, and some sort of spirit like Brandy or Triple Sec. Sometimes a sweetener like honey, simple syrup or orange juice is added and some recipes call for seltzer water or lemon lime soda. Like all kinds of punch, there are a billion different recipes.
Sangria is derived from the Spanish word sangre, meaning blood. Traditionally, Sangria is made from red wine, but there are many white Sangrias as well. I recommend making your own or ordering it in a restaurant rather than buying a bottle of pre-made Sangria. I’ve tried a few bottled Sangrias and have never been impressed.
If you are looking to make red Sangria, an inexpensive Spanish Rioja is usually a good option. For white, an unoaked Chardonnay is probably your best bet, but it really comes down to personal preference. Check out the recipes below or do a quick Google search for Sangria recipes to find hundreds of variations on this traditional Spanish and Portuguese punch.
Classic Sangria (Adapted from the Classic Sangria Recipe found in Everyday Food)
- 1 orange cut in slices
- 1 lime cut into slices
- 1 granny smith apple cut into bite size pieces
- ¼ cup brandy
- 1 bottle dry red wine (Rioja or Cabernet Sauvignon)
- 4 cups lemon lime soda (optional in my opinion)
Combine all the ingredients except for the soda and refrigerate for an hour or up to 24 hours. Add ice and Soda (optional) and serve. You can vary the type of fruit based on what you have on hand. The original recipe called for grapes, but I omitted those.
Cherry Wine Sangria (Adapted from Chateau De Leelanau’s recipe)
- 1 bottle CDL Cherry Red (or another cherry wine– Cherry Red is sweet but I might try a dry one)
- ¼ cup CDL sparkling Cherry Juice (or other sparkling cherry juice; if you can’t find sparkling cherry juice, try mixing cherry juice and club soda or just using regular cherry juice)
- 1 Sliced orange
- ½ sliced lemon
- ½ sliced lime
- ½ sliced pineapple
Combine all ingredients and let chill in the fridge. Enjoy!
Sangria Flora (from the St.-Germain website)
- ¾ cup St-Germain
- 3 cups Sauvignon Blanc or Dry White Wine
- 1 peach
- 5 Strawberries
- 5 Raspberries
- 10 Green Grapes (halved)
Combine all ingredients. Let sit for 15 minutes (or longer if desired) and serve.
With so many recipes out there, it can be hard to decide which to try. My suggestion is to experiment! There is no right or wrong way to make Sangria, so mix it up and see what tastes best to you. Also if you’ve got a great Sangria recipe please share!