The global novel coronavirus pandemic may have grounded us, but we can still enjoy happy hour. This daily series will provide delicious drink recipes for you to try at home. So call your friends for a virtual sip session and traverse the globe, even if it's only in your mind. 

A large glass of ruby-colored Sangria. A large wedge of watermelon and orange slice hang off the rim of the glass.
Sangria is a popular refreshing fruity full-body drink © Cristian Puscasu / Shutterstock

Today's cocktail hails from Spain – Sangria. 

What is it?

Sangria is a refreshing summer drink based on full-bodied red wine, spiked with liquor and combined with fruit (juice and wedges), sugar and soda water or lemonade. 


Sangria has a history in Spain that stretches back to the Romans who are recorded enjoying a tipple of watered-down red wine with fruit back in the 4th century; water was deemed unsafe to drink unless combined with alcohol to kill off any bacteria. The name comes from sangre (blood) due to its ruby red colour. Sangria was famously introduced to the USA in the Spanish Pavilion during the 1964 New York World’s Fair. 

You’ll need (serves 4)

24fl oz (1 bottle) of dry, full-bodied red wine, preferably Spanish 
2 tbsp orange juice 
3 tbsp orange liqueur, such as Gran Torres 
1 tbsp sugar 
1 orange, thinly sliced (diced peach or apple may also be added) 
1 lemon, thinly sliced 
8½fl oz (250ml) soda water, sparkling water or gaseosa (the Spanish soda equivalent) 
ice cubes 


Step 1: Combine all the ingredients in a large jug except for the soda water. 
Step 2: Cover and refrigerate for several hours or overnight. 
Step 3: Add the soda and ice cubes and serve immediately in goblet-sized wine glasses. 

Tasting notes

Sangria is, above all, a sociable drink. It is generally prepared in a jug so not designed for solitary drinking. This is a drink to enjoy with friends and family, ideally on a hot summer’s day at a chiringuito (beachside bar) where you can sip your drink sitting on a stool with sand between your toes. Sangria should be drunk soon after it is made otherwise the ice will melt and it will go flat. At the same time, don’t drink it too quickly! Remember that added liqueur – as innocuous and thirst-quenching as this delicious concoction tastes, it still has serious hangover potential.

Other recipes:

Hibiscus Ginger Punch 
Siam Sunray

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