On Episode 25 of The Charlie Tonic Hour, I show Charlie how to make up a pitcher of sangria from ingredients that we had lying around the house. I choose sangria for this week’s drink segment because sangria is a perfect vacation drink. It is fun and fruity but you don’t need any fancy ingredients or complicated equipment. With apologizes to Jimmy Buffett, any vacation drink that requires a blender is doing too much. The other great thing about sangria is that in most cases there is no need to make a special trip out to buy the ingredients. It’s the perfect way to use up random bottles of cheap wine and weird liquor that were leftover from you last party. Of course if you are like me, leftover alcohol is a rare thing from a party. If you do need to go out and buy wine, sangria is what cheap wine was invented for. The other great thing about sangria is that you can make a big pitcher of it and leave it in the fridge for a few days. It just keeps getting better and better until you drink it all and you are left with the best part of all: the alcohol infused fruit at the bottom. There are plenty of variations on sangria but here is a base recipe that you can use to build a tasty, tropical, sangria of any flavor.
Build Your Own Sangria
One bottle (750 ml) of red or white wine.
The cheaper the better.
1 to 1.5 cups liquor of your choosing.
Rum, Vodka, Triple Sec, Brandy and Schnapps all work well
2-4 cups of chopped fruit.
Sliced citrus fruit looks great. Meatier fruits like apples, pears, peaches or strawberries hold the liquor well and taste great when you eat them.
Sugar to taste.
1/2 cup works well for dry wines but less for sweeter wines.
1-2 cups juice or soda.
The Spanish use Sprite a lot but I prefer juice of some kind. Orange or lemonade are good choices. You can also add club soda for fizzy without the extra calories.
Mix the sugar, liquor and juice together in a large pitcher until sugar is dissolved. Add the wine and fruit.
You can drink it right away but the flavor is best if you refrigerate overnight.
I always make a double batch because it goes fast, especially if you are having a party.
Thanks to Divya Thakur for use of his picture.