Sangria is a popular summer drink in Valencia, but no two recipes of this wine-based drink are exactly alike. This post gives a few ways to spice up the traditional recipe and add personal touches.
In the Valencian Community, we experience many sweltering summer days, the kind of day when sweat glistens across your body. The first thing that comes to mind is how to cool down. One of the best parts of summer lies in the refreshing drinks that can soothe the body during hot weather. When thinking of summer, a few specific drinks come to mind: the mojito, the margarita, and sangria.
Personalizing your Sangria
The trick with these drinks is to find ways to reinvent them. The easiest way to create differences with sangria is using either white (sangria blanco) or red wine as the base. An interesting, less traditional type of sangria is a white wine base and a medley of citrus fruit. It is lighter than red wine sangria, and the citrus fruit works well in the spring or summer seasons. The best part of sangria is that it’s almost guaranteed that no two are alike. This drink calls for wine, fruit, brandy, and perhaps soda water or fanta to dilute it. So the fun lies in mixing around to see what personally works best. One thing that must be standard is that the fruit used should be at the peak of ripeness, ensuring that the juice within the fruit mixes with the wine and vice versa.
Sangria for Every Season
Sangria is perfect for the summer season, but you can also drink it in cooler weather. An excellent way to transition this summery drink to an autumn drink is to add different flavours, such as using a cinnamon stick. When adding in spices, it’s essential to keep in mind how these spices might blend with the wine and fruits used. For this example, the cinnamon stick’s flavor works with fruit that’s in its peak in the fall, such as the apples, figs, or pears. The wine used should be a red wine with a hearty undertone. When having sangria in summer, it’s vital to include ice in the preparation.
Wine and Fruit Pairings
The weather is heating up as summer is here and outdoor activities beckon. Heat up the grill, throw on your favorite food, but don’t forget the wine.
As just mentioned, one of the most important parts of making sangria is to make sure that the wine and fruit go well together. White wines work well with citrus fruits such as orange, grapefruit, lemon, and lime. Red wines are heartier, but this type can work well with more fruits. A few fruits that always seem to go well are strawberries, oranges, apples, pears, and figs. Fruits such as watermelon fall short of being a good fruit to use in sangria due to the fact that it will either become super saturated by the wine or will start to fall apart.
A Brief Background on Sangria
Although now frequently imbibed in countries worldwide, Sangria’s origins started in Spain. The word sangre is the Spanish word for blood, and as you can guess, it was basically named for the colour of the drink. Whether the sangria made is white or dark red, it still remains to this day a great way to quench thirst and cool down on a hot summer day. So when the sun is beating down, remember the refreshing nature of this traditional drink.