Making fresh sangria is one of my favorite year-round drinks to mix up at home.The thing I love about sangria (or shangria as we like to call it in my home) are the endless combination of flavors you can create depending on your tastes, mood and what’s in season.
Last week a dear friend of mine was coming over for a long-overdue catch up. We had discussed going out for drinks and a bite to eat with my daughter, but as my eyes fell onto a bowl of peaches that were just slightly over-ripe, I decided we should stay in and I would whip up a batch of shangria instead.
Some might say you should be picky with the wines you choose for sangria. But I say: use whatever you have on hand! And in this case, I had a bottle of Baron Herzog Sauvignon Blanc leftover from a recent Shabbat dinner. It turned out to be a perfect base for a light, Summery sangria. Add some strawberries, a bit of orange-flavored liqueur and club soda or ginger ale, and you are ready with a light, fruity and slightly fizzy drink.
Want some inspiration to create your own perfect pairing? Here are a few recipes that caught my eye:
Need the perfect serving set for your sangria? I love this super affordable 7 piece set which includes glasses for all your friends too. Sangria isn’t meant to be enjoyed alone, after all.
Cheers! Or rather, l’chaim!
1 bottle dry white wine, such as Baron Herzog Sauvignon Blanc
¼ cup orange flavored liqueur or orange flavored vodka
2 Tbsp sugar
2 peaches, cut into slices or pieces
1 cup strawberries, sliced
8 ounces ginger ale or club soda
Small bunch of fresh mint leaves, around 2-3 Tbsp
In a small container combine orange-flavored liqueur, sugar, peach slices and strawberries. Put in fridge for 2 hours or overnight.
When ready to serve pour the fruit mixture into a pitcher. Add wine and soda.
Garnish with fresh mint.
What’s an easy and elegant way to serve a crowd some festive drinks? Punch! And in the spirit of the trends of 2012, I would like to suggest serving up some Cranberry Moscato Punch as you usher in 2013!
Last year at the holidays I made a rosemary-citrus infused punch that was subtle and sweet, but also more work since it called for an extra rosemary simple syrup. This year I am opting for something a bit bolder (and easier) with cranberry juice, lemon, triple sec and the sparkling wine.
Want to make your cocktails just a touch more special? Try freezing cranberries, mint, lemon or other herbs in square ice cub trays. We use these Tovolo Perfect Cube Trays for our rosemary and cranberry ice cubes last year.
2 bottles Bartenura Moscato wine (or other sweet sparkling wine)
1 lemon, sliced
1 bag fresh cranberries
4 cups cranberry juice
1 cup orange juice
1/2 cup - 1 cup Triple Sec (or other orange flavored liqueur)
cranberry ice (optional)
mint for garnish
In a pitcher or large punch bowl combine moscato wine, cranberry juice, orange juice, fresh cranberries and lemon slices. Add triple sec and stir gently.
Serve over cranberry ice cubes, or regular ice cubes, and garnish with lemon slices and fresh mint.
My husband and I aren’t really the sit-on-a-beach-for-a-week types, so instead of a beach vaca for our honeymoon, we went skiing in Switzerland – pretty amazing! After our days on the slopes, we would get to the bottom of the mountain and hit up the bars for an apres-ski – and had for the first time Gluhwein, or more commonly known here as mulled wine.
The cloves and cinnamon add just the right amount of spice, and some sugar and orange add sweetness. Putting the cloves into the orange slices isn’t just decorative – its actually convenient so you don’t have to go fishing around for the cloves when you are ready to serve the warm, spicy drink. (This is a step that I didn’t come to understand until I had made this recipe a few times…)
I will say in full disclosure that I have been known to whip up a batch of this cozy treat on a cold day, put it into a to-go mug and bring it to a pedicure. Am I allowed to say that? Regardless, it takes relaxation up a notch, and so I highly recommend.
It’s also the perfect drink to serve at a holiday gathering. You can double the batch, put it on the stove, and allow guests to serve themselves a warm mug. Wanna get fancy? Serve the hot wine in Israeli-style glass mugs like these.
Happy relaxing (and drinking)!
1 cup water
1 cup sugar
2-3 cinnamon sticks
1 bottle red wine
Cut orange into slices and place cloves into the orange peel.
Heat water, sugar and cinnamon sticks in a medium-large saucepan until sugar is dissolved completely.
Add wine and bring to simmer, but don't let it boil. Continue to heat wine for 20-30 minutes. Serve in mugs and garnish with cinnamon stick and slices of orange.