White Wine California Citrus Sangria

Well, I think we might finally have summer here in the SF Bay Area. I know it's officially summer most other places but you know the famous saying - "the coldest winter I ever spent was a summer in San Francisco."

At any rate, I'm charging ahead with a summery drink and nothing says summer to me quite like a huge pitcher of Sangria.

Sangria is traditionally made with red wine and while I like it that way, I don't love it. A Sangria made with a crisp white, rose or sparking wine - that is another story.

You know I love the idea of making drinks by the pitcher for easy entertaining and this one is especially well-suited for the long, slow pace and menus of summer BBQ's.

I have tried several recipes but always come back to this adaptation by Michael Chiarello.

White Wine California Citrus Sangria

  • 3 bottles pinot grigio
  • 1 1/2 cups brandy
  • 3/4 cup orange liqueur
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 2 peaches  thinly sliced
  • 1 mango cubed
  • 1/2 small melon cubed - honeydew
  • 1 lime, thinly sliced
  • 1/4 cup mint leaves

In a large pitcher, combine the wine, brandy, and orange liqueur. Pour in the sugar, stir or shake the pitcher thoroughly to mix. Add all fruit at once. Allow the mixture to sit for 1 hour before serving.

I know it says citrus Sangria and apart from the lime there's not much there. That's the "adaptation" part or the tinkering, whatever you'd like to call it. I'm notorious for changing, enhancing and outright ignoring recipes but I have a good excuse this time - using the best, freshest fruits and in this case that's summer fruits instead of winter/spring citrus.

If it were winter or spring I would, hard as this is for me, follow the original recipe and use 1 orange, 1 blood orange, 3 kumquats and 1 lime.

Salud! Here's to summer.