I don’t think I was served or offered sangria the entire time I was in Spain. That was eight or nine summers ago anyway, and I was young but always provided with whatever adult beverage my hosts were drinking. Table wine with soda water, champagne, a taste of this or that liqueur.
No sangria though. Hm.
At particular parties in college, we’d fill a big hammered stainless (or was it aluminum?) bowl with cheap wine, 7-up, all sorts of chopped fruits, and various other magical liquid ingredients I never quite saw. Then we’d sing in the basement all night, or dance down the streets.
Now, it’s time for a mellow and fruity sangria–something tasty that delights with every sip but doesn’t require much attention. We sat out at the fire pit last weekend, pre-celebrating Father’s Day as my future ma- and pa-in law are currently off exploring London for 8 days. More on the meal we grilled later: we made our favorites, and leftovers were scant and lasted only hours.
The sangria, on the other hand, was finished before the meal was even begun.
Fruit from 1 canteloupe, cubed into bite-sized pieces
4 ripe apricots, sliced into half-moons and then cut into little pieces
2 mangos, cut into pieces like this
1/2 cup of torn mint leaves, or more as desired
1/2 cup orange liqueur such as Gran Marnier (what I used) or Cointreau
1 bottle of cold, not-bad pinot grigio (I had a $9 bottle of Hogue Pinot Grigio ’08 on hand)
Any other wine leftovers in the fridge (in my case, half a bottle of a vinho verde and a splash of riesling)
Chop all fruits and mix with torn mint leaves and orange liqueur. Add wine and stir to mix. Refrigerate at least 1 hour before serving in tall glasses. Provide spoons to facilitate fruit-slurping.
Experiment with other wine choices. When it comes to a sangria or mixed wine drink, I’m not particular about vintages or vintners. In this case, I didn’t pay much attention, beyond the varietal, to what half-bottles from the fridge I was adding to the mix. Find a good value in the $8-$10 range and relax.