Ahhh sangria – thirst quenching, delicious and relatively healthy, this is the perfect drink for the warmer months. Whether served in a large wine glass or a boujee carafe, this zingy, fruity, wine-based cocktail is sure to hit the spot.
Sangria originates from Spain and Portugal and has become one of the most popular alcoholic beverages around the globe. The wine-based drink can be dated hundreds of years back to the middle ages where it was called ‘hippocras’. Historically, it was enjoyed in these countries as a touch of alcohol would make the bacteria-filled water safe to drink again. To add flavour, spices such as ginger and cinnamon would be added along with seasonal fruit.
Sangria is traditionally a red wine punch made using a Spanish Tempranillo blend or other red wine variants from Spain’s Rioja wine region. Citrus fruits, spices, juice and occasionally brandy is added to create the instantly recognisable concoction. However, what’s less commonly known is the white wine sangria variant, sangria blanco. As one of the most individualistic drinks out there, sangria’s appeal lies in the fact that you can really take your favourite wine and fruits and experiment with different pairings to create your own signature drink.
But, in case you’re not sure where to start, we’ve got you covered with this basic sangria blanco recipe that you can tailor to your liking. Free from the confines and constraints of many traditional cocktail recipes that leave no room for error, sangria isn’t strict or precise but instead laid-back and robust. It’s the perfect summer drink and even if you’ve already enjoyed one or two at a late lunch or on a balmy evening, get creative and don’t worry, there’s no risk of compromising its integrity.
Give this one a whirl and let us know how it goes.
- 1 bottle of dry, crisp white wine (Sauvignon Blanc and Pinot Grigio are both easy to source and will work well)
- ¼ cup of apple brandy (to give the drink a subtle apple flavour + a smoother finish)
- ¼ cup of simple sugar syrup or agave nectar
- 1 lemon (sliced into rounds)
- ½ a green apple (skin left on and chopped into small pieces)
- 1 peach or nectarine (sliced into sectors)
- 1 cup of strawberries (sliced in half)
- A handful of mint sprigs
- In a large pitcher, muddle together the lemon and sugar syrup
- Add the apple brandy and continue to muddle before adding all of the fruit
- Pour the wine into the pitcher and stir the ingredients around whilst adding in the mint sprigs
- Add ice (lots of ice) and soda water if you want a bit of fizz
- Adjust the sweetness, acidity and alcohol content to your desire, remember you really can do no wrong with sangria
Sangria is best served ice cold! So, keep your wine glasses in the fridge for a couple of hours for extra points, and after you’ve enjoyed the whole glass, you get to enjoy the sangria-soaked fruity bits at the bottom. How good.
As for a dish pairing, sangria will perfectly complement something light and fresh. Think grilled fish and a lemon dressed garden salad, a simple prawn linguine or a barbecue cook-up. Anything that uses quality, fresh ingredients will pair beautifully with the refreshing and zingy nature of the sangria.