How to Make a Pitcher of Sangria

Sangria is the lifeblood that fuels a lazy afternoon party in the summer, when it’s too late for Mimosas but too early for hard liquor. Sangria, like sangre, like blood, is sweet and perhaps too sippable—red wine, a helping of brandy, and fruit juices. How you make it varies wildly from recipe to recipe, from palate to palate. Our version leans on orange, apple, blackberry, and pomegranate to create a lush backdrop to the alcohol. Ideally, you’ll be able to give yourself 24 hours to let the fruits steep into the mix, however strong the temptation might be to guzzle what amounts to a very refreshing, very grown-up fruit punch. Then, find yourself a veranda or a terrace—preferably one that’s sun-dappled—to plop down on with the pitcher. Share if you want, don’t if you don’t.

A Little Background

Sangria hails from Spain, where it was conceived many centuries ago with Spanish wine made from grapes grown on ancient vineyards. The name probably comes from sangre, the Spanish word for blood, likely due to its color rather than blood being an early ingredient. But hey, who knows. At the 1964 World’s Fair in New York, Spain served up Sangria to thirsty Americans, and it’s stuck around ever since. In fact, it’s everywhere. You can order pitchers of it at diners and five-star restaurants specializing in Spanish cuisine. In Europe though, the E.U. ruled that only Spain and Portugal have the right to make and serve “real” Sangria, which means other European countries have to label their offshoots as such—Finnish Sangria or German Sangria, for example. Somehow, that’s not as appealing.

If You Like This, Try These

You could make pitchers on pitchers of Sangria variations. For one thing, it’s an easy drink to experiment with, so have at it. Go crazy in the produce section. We can also suggest a White Sangria recipe made with white wine, cava, and limoncello; and another White Sangria recipe that’s much fruitier. Sangaree is a simpler wine punch that’s drunk in the Caribbean. For a hot wine cocktail, go for Mulled Wine.

What You Need

Here’s what you need to do Sangria justice, beyond what you might be able to dig out of the fridge or cupboard.

Food styling by Sean Dooley
Prop styling by Emily Hirsch
Photographed by Jeffrey Westbrook

Source : Esquire