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Cocktail Hour: Fruity-Fresh Versions Of Sangria

Sangria. Credit: iStockphoto

Sangria. Credit: iStockphoto

Sangria is a simple concoction of fruit, sugar, water and wine and a staple in sunny, tapas-minded Spain. Grown-up fruit punch, it’s refreshing and versatile, taking on more savory lemon and lime tones if that’s the fruit you choose, or slightly sweet if peaches are your preference.

But if you can’t be bothered to make your own, increasingly bars are making inventive versions, and good bottled versions abound.

Eppa SupraFruta is a bottled sangria, available in both red and white versions, made from organically grown Mendocino County wine grapes.

The red combines Cabernet Sauvignon and Syrah with a base of organic pomegranate, açai, blueberry, blood orange and lemon juices, while the white mixes Chardonnay with mangosteen, white peach, mango and blood orange juices. After the wine and fruit juices are blended, the sangria is left in stainless steel tanks for a few weeks before bottling.

Slices Sangria is the new creation of Mike Kenton, the founder of OFFbeat Brands. Kenton spent much of his career at Codorniu in Spain, where he fell in love with the traditional drink.

He uses wine made from Spanish grape varieties such as Tempranillo and Verdejo, blended with fruit juices such as orange, lime and blackberry (for the red); or lime, lemon and pineapple (for the white).

“Sangria has been on my family’s dining table for as long as I can remember,” said Slices’ Spanish winemaker, Miguel Gúrpide.

Gurpide also makes a sangria rosé (the fruit used includes lime, lemon and strawberry) and two sparkling sangrias, one rosé and one white.

Relatively light in alcohol (usually under 9% alcohol by volume), sangria is an easygoing cocktail to make for one or for a crowd, doused in club soda or given a couple of cubes of ice.

Eppa-phany Punch

Courtesy Eppa Sangria

Serves 1


2 to 3 cardamom pods

½ ounce lemon juice

½ ounce simple syrup

1 ounce fresh pineapple juice

2 ounces Eppa SupaFruta Sangria

Pineapple leaf, for garnish


1. In a tin, muddle the cardamom pods.

2. Add the rest of the ingredients.

3. Shake vigorously for 30 seconds.

4. Double strain over ice in a wine glass.

5. Garnish with a pineapple leaf.

Spanish Tortilla

Courtesy Tara and Les Goodman, Adafina Culinary

Serves 2


2 onions, Spanish or sweet, sliced ⅛-inch thick

6 to 7 medium Yukon Gold potatoes, peeled, sliced into ¼-inch rounds

2 cups Spanish olive oil

6 large farm eggs

Kosher salt and pepper to taste


1. Place the onions and potatoes in a medium mixing bowl, and toss with a couple pinches of kosher salt.

2. Place a 10- to 12-inch nonstick pan over medium-high flame, adding the onions and potatoes.

3. Pour in the olive oil and stir to coat.

4. When oil begins to bubble, reduce heat to medium-low and cook, turning frequently, until potatoes are fork-tender but not browned, about 15 to 20 minutes.

5. Remove pan from heat and strain the oil from the onions and potatoes.

6. Set aside oil and reserve for another use.

7. Cool onions and potatoes to room temperature, and adjust for seasoning, adding salt and pepper as needed.

8. Beat the eggs and add them to the cooled potato mixture.

9. Return pan to medium heat and stir the tortilla mixture as it cooks until eggs are slightly set.

10. Spread mixture out evenly and reduce heat to medium-low.

11. Cook until bottom is golden brown and eggs are set, about 10 to 12 minutes (you can place pan under the broiler for 2 to 3 minutes if needed to set the top).

12. Remove pan from heat and let cool for 10 to 15 minutes.

13. Place a plate face down over the pan and flip tortilla over — bottom side up. Let cool for a half hour or so, and slice into wedges.

14. Serve with Spanish pimenton (paprika) aioli, crunchy sea salt, and a glass of chilled sangria — or a sangria cocktail.

Top  photo: Sangria. Credit: iStockphoto

Zester Daily contributor Virginie Boone is a Sonoma Valley-based wine writer. She has reported on the Northern California wine scene for the Santa Rosa Press Democrat and its affiliate food and wine magazine, Savor, and is a contributing reviewer of California wines for Wine Enthusiast.